Health Freedom States
The following states have laws that protect patient access to alternative therapies from licensed physicians: Alaska, Colorado, Georgia, Massachusetts, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas, and Washington.
The following states have regulations that protect patient access to alternative therapies from licensed physicians:
The following states have laws that protect patient access to EDTA Chelation, specifically, from licensed physicians: South Dakota and Louisiana.
To read the complete text, go to Health Lobby's State Laws page.
Licensed practitioners granted freedom to provide complementary and alternative therapies (enacted March, 2001):
Senate Bill 1324 passed both houses after a barnstorm session of committee hearings and votes. House bill 1077 by Rep. Connie Mack and Senate Bill1324 by Senator Durell Peaden, M.D. were introduced on 3/9/01. Senator Charlie Clary Co-Sponsored. (Both Senators Peaden and Clary serve on the Senate Health, Aging, and Long-Term Care Committee, and Senator Clary chaired the Committee for the past two years).
Special thanks to Julie Hilton, a lawyer/mediator turned lobbyist in the crunch, and to Florida Citizens for Health.
Senate Bill 1324 authorizes provision of and access to complementary or alternative health care treatments; requires patients to be provided with certain information regarding such treatments; revises Florida’s Patient's Bill of Rights & Responsibilities to include right to access any mode of treatment patient
The new law requires that practitioners offering alternative treatments disclose specific information to their patients before providing care:
“(3) COMMUNICATION OF TREATMENT ALTERNATIVES.--A health care practitioner who offers to provide a patient with a complementary or alternative health care treatment must inform the patient of the nature of the treatment and must explain the benefits and risks associated with the treatment to the extent necessary for the patient to make an informed and prudent decision regarding such treatment option. In compliance with this subsection: “
”(a) The health care practitioner must inform the patient of the practitioner's education, experience, and credentials in relation to the complementary or alternative health care treatment option.”
”(b) The health care practitioner may, in his or her discretion, communicate the information orally or in written form directly to the patient or to the patient's legal representative.”
”(c) The health care practitioner may, in his or her discretion and without restriction, recommend any mode of treatment that is, in his or her judgment, in the best interests of the patient, including complementary or alternative health care treatments, in accordance with the provisions of his or her license.”
To view the full text for the bill, see www.faim.org/news.htm#FL
Minnesota's bill was the result of the efforts of a health freedom movement galvanized in the mid-90s by high profile legal actions taken against several of the state's most prominent alternative health care practitioners.
The bill's enactment marks a step forward for protecting consumer access not only in Minnesota, but also throughout the land. The bill was long overdue. A consumer's freedom of access is dependent on the practitioner's freedom to practice, much as the public's freedom of access to information rests on the writer's freedom to write freely and without suppression by state laws or actions.
On May 11, 2000, Governor Jesse Ventura signed the Complementary and Alternative Health Care Freedom of Access bill into law. With that signing Minnesota protected freedom of access to health care as a basic freedom. It grants a right of practice for unlicensed complementary health care providers. The law requires complementary health care providers to present a patient bill of rights to their patients, as well as disclose in writing background information about their training and practice. It also provides enforcement mechanisms to protect the public from fraud and harm. The new law went into effect July 1, 2001.
Special thanks to attorney Diane Miller and Advocate Jerry Johnson for their efforts in getting this bill written, negotiated and passed.
President, MN Natural Health Coalition
3236 17th Ave. South, #1
Minneapolis, MN 55407
Conflict between the NV Board of Homeopathic Medical Examiners and the NV State Board of Medical Examiners has resulted in Regulations by the regular board to allow their licensees, MDs, DOs and physician assistants, to use CAM therapies under certain conditions.
In early Spring, the Homeopathic Board proposed regulations that would have expanded the scope of "homeopathic" practices overseen by that Board to include a number of CAM therapies other than Hahnamanian homeopathy, such as EDTA Chelation, herbal, vitamin and nutritional treatments, along with 'trigger point,' 'thought field' and many other therapies.
Public debate resulted in the regular board appealing the homeopathic board's regulations to the legislature. On August 22, 2000 a legislative committee overturned the Homeopathic Board's regulations ruling that the regulations went beyond the scope of traditional homeopathy and exceeded the intention of law.
Meanwhile, the regular Board reviewed their regulations and replaced a provision prohibiting treatment "in a manner not recognized scientifically as being beneficial" with new provision permitting CAM under several conditions, among them:
- A licensee shall not practice medicine by utilizing any means or instrumentality that has a risk for a patient that is unreasonably greater than the means or instrumentality ordinarily utilized by physicians in good standing practicing in the same specialty or field or that is provided as a substitute for conventional treatment that has proven to be of substantial benefit to the patient.
- Prior to offering advice about the means or instrumentality of treatment, the licensee shall undertake an assessment of the patient. This assessment should include but not be limited to, conventional methods of diagnosis ordinarily utilized by physicians in good standing practicing in the same specialty or field, and may include non-conventional methods of diagnosis which shall be documented in the patient’s chart.
- Documentation as to whether such conventional treatment options ordinarily utilized by physicians in good standing practicing in the same specialty or field have been discussed with the patient and shall include referral input, if necessary.
To view the complete text for the regulations, see www.faim.org/states.htm#NV.
The Ohio health freedom The new law reads as follows:
An individual authorized to practice medicine and surgery…may use alternative medical treatments if the physician provides the necessary information in order to obtain informed consent from the patient and the treatment meets the standards enforced by the State Medical Board pursuant to Section 4731 .22 of the Revised Code and any rules adopted by the Board.
The Ohio health freedom bill was signed into law on July 10, 2000 by Governor Bob Taft. House Bill 90 by Rep. George Terwilleger (R), passed the Ohio House of Representatives 88-0 on October 13, 1999. It has now been replaced by the Senate version of the bill SB 125, by Charles Horn (R) which passed the Senate on May 24. On May 25 the House concurred to the senate version. The new law reads as follows:
- AN INDIVIDUAL AUTHORIZED TO PRACTICE MEDICINE AND SURGERY OR OSTEOPATHIC MEDICINE AND SURGERY MAY USE ALTERNATIVE MEDICAL TREATMENTS IF THE PHYSICIAN PROVIDES THE NECESSARY INFORMATION IN ORDER TO OBTAIN INFORMED CONSENT FROM THE PATIENT AND THE TREATMENT MEETS THE STANDARDS ENFORCED BY THE STATE MEDICAL BOARD PURSUANT TO SECTION 4731.22 OF THE REVISED CODE AND ANY RULES ADOPTED BY THE BOARD.
- AS USED IN THIS SECTION, "ALTERNATIVE MEDICAL TREATMENT" MEANS CARE THAT IS COMPLIMENTARY TO OR DIFFERS FROM CONVENTIONAL MEDICAL CARE BUT IS REASONABLE WHEN THE BENEFITS AND RISKS OF THE ALTERNATIVE MEDICAL TREATMENT AND THE CONVENTIONAL CARE ARE COMPARED.
Special thanks to Ohio lobbyist Thomas Pappas.
Supporters had presented in favor of HB.90 in three hearings before the House Health Retirement and Aging Committee which amended the bill before reporting it for a floor vote in the house. Opponents provided testimony as well on two occasions.
In the last session, Terwilliger introduced HB772 and Nancy Chiles Dix (R, Athens), vice chair of the Senate Energy, Natural Resources & Environment Committee introduced the companion Senate bill SB138.
The legislation was advocated by the Ohio Coalition for Patient's Rights (OCPR), which includes several groups, among them the nation's oldest continuous state Homeopathic Medical Society.
For more information, contact the OCPR.
Ohio Coalition for Patient's Rights
P.O. Box 14
Bluffton, Ohio 15817
Go to http://www.healthlobby.com/news2.html#Ohio for details.
The Louisiana legislature passed a statute in July 1999 which authorizes the use of chelating agents and chelation therapy by licensed physicians. To view the text of the statue, see www.faim.org/states.htm#la.
The Professions and Occupations statute for South Dakota was modified in July of 1993 to allow for physicians to practice chelation. To view the text of the statute, see www.faim.org/states.htm#sd.