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Up-to-date info on MOA legislative advocacy efforts and issues impacting Maryland Optometry.

 

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Did You Know?

Posted By MOA Admin, Tuesday, May 7, 2019

The MOA Annual Convention will provide the mandatory scope expansion course and upcoming e-blasts will explain the impact of new BOE regulations for 2019 and 2020 renewals. 


Please take a few minutes to update your personal information with the MOA. The more up-to-date we keep your records, the better we're able to serve you timely and relevant information. 
Click on the graphic below to fill out the contact form.

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History Has Just Been Made

Posted By MOA Admin, Tuesday, April 30, 2019

 

This morning Governor Larry Horgan signed HB 471 - Health Occupations - Requirements for the Practice of Optometry - Miscellaneous Revisions into law. This is a monumental day for Maryland optometry! The MOA would like to thank all of ourmembers and supporters, we could not have done this without any of you.

Click Here to learn how the new law effects you.


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The Benefits of Membership

Posted By MOA Admin, Tuesday, April 23, 2019

 

 MOA congratulates Past President Andrew Morgenstern, OD, FAAO on his recent induction into the National Academy of Practice (NAP)

 

The NAP is an interprofessional nonprofit organization with membership representing 14
academies of practice. 
NAP fellows are nationally recognized, distinguished practitioners
and scholars, elected by their peers to advise health care policy makers. 
The MOA
congratulates Dr. Morgenstern who is most deserving of this esteemed honor!

Click here to read press release.

 

Membership Has Its Benefits

  • Advocacy - Protecting our profession through continued grassroots efforts
  • Practice Growth - AOA Excel offers cutting-edge business and clinical resources
  • Medical Malpractice Insurance Savings - You might be able to save up to $1,000 annually. Click here for a free quote. 
  • MOA Member Benefits - Save annually in CE Discounts, Credit Card Processing Fees, Disability & Life Insurance, Group Purchasing Discounts, Retirement Planning and Student Loan Refinancing.
  • Free associate membership for paraoptometric staff - provides access to an extensive selection of exam dates, courses, study guides, seminars, lectures and periodical resources.
  • Networking with colleagues - society meetings, social events and public health initiatives

 

Click here to renew your 2019 Membership by 4/30/19! Thank you!!!

Best,
Kevin Johnson (MOA President)

Download File (PDF)

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The Future of Maryland Optometry

Posted By MOA Admin, Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Leadership Summit Convened To Map Out The Future of Maryland Optometry & MO
Dean Gogerdchi, O.D.
President-Elect

This past Sunday, MOA members met with AOA leadership in D.C. to discuss the future of Maryland Optometry in light of pending scope expansion. The discussion, which covered a wide variety and range of topics was extremely productive, but the greatest takeaways for me were the new found energy and excitement that filled the room and the diversity of our meeting attendees, which included leaders of the past, present and future. Together, we strategized about a new "2020 vision" for Maryland Optometry focused on membership growth and engagement. Young ODs will be crucial to our organization's success, so it was great to see a lot of fresh new faces at this strategy meeting.  

Contact Dean Gogerdchi at gogerdchi@gmail.com to learn more about getting involved, and many thanks to meeting attendees including: past and present MOA Presidents (Drs. Rob Stutman, Eliott Klonsky, John Burns and Kevin Johnson), Board Members (Drs. Whitney Fahrman and Alan Glazier) and MOA Leadership/Committee Chairs (Drs. Natalie Sukontasup, Brian Woolf, Corinne Casey, Judy Hu, and Chun Auyueng).

 


       

 
 
Maryland Optometry Storms Capitol Hill
Heather Atcherson, O.D.
Young OD Chair

On Tuesday, April 9 MOA members and optometry students met with State representatives and senators in D.C. to discuss pro-Optometry legislation at the 2019 AOA on Capitol Hill conference. MOA Past President Dr. Bryan Rogoff and I led the Maryland Delegation, joined by our colleagues (Drs. Thomas Azman, Gwen Songwe, Vicky Wong and Jenny Chan) and five optometry students. The optometry students were excited that Maryland Optometry will soon enter the 21st century and were tremendous advocates for the profession during meetings with legislators and staff. All five are interested in practicing in Maryland and will hopefully be able to join us at our Annual Convention in November. They had a great time gaining first-hand experience of the legislative process and learning about the work that goes into creating and passing bills. Many thanks to our Maryland Delegation optometry students: Alexandra, Katherine and Graham (third-year Salus students, Katzen Eye Group externs), Kelly (third-year Salus student, Eye Design Family Eyecare Center extern) and Julie (second-year NECO student). 

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Persistance Pays!

Posted By MOA Admin, Tuesday, April 9, 2019
Did Virginia give up when they lost their No. 1 seed in game one of the N.C.A.A. tournament? NO THE DID NOT! They came back and took it all, winning their first ever NCAA title this year. Almost anything can be accomplished with discipline, determination and persistence...even the modernization of Maryland Optometry!

While everyone was watching the nail-biting Championship game (and their brackets), our scope bill passed through both chambers of the legislature. It now sits on the Governor's desk, waiting to be signed into law. 

Unfortunately, the end of Maryland's legislative "season" was not all positive. Maryland Speaker of the House, the Honorable Michael E. Busch passed away on Sunday. He presided over his chamber for four decades as a FEARSOME, RESPECTED and FAIR leader who will undoubtedly be missed by all. 

Since we cannot know what the future holds, I say, "Carpe Diem!"

 

Jennifer Cohen
Executive Director

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D-Day Approaches!

Posted By MOA Admin, Tuesday, April 2, 2019
The Maryland General Assembly adjourns on Monday, April 8th for Sine Die!
Legislation (HB 471 and SB 447) to modernize Maryland Optometry is now only days away from becoming law. A much deserved celebration is being prepared - but first, we must recognize those who were instrumental in this year's success. Take a moment to get to know your colleagues (ODs and MDs) who supported our 2019 legislation, and please thank them for their support! 

More information about our scope expansion victory celebration and future education requirements will be provided next week. 

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A Sunny Forecast

Posted By MOA Admin, Tuesday, March 26, 2019
After weeks, months, years of pushing our legislative agenda forward, Maryland Optometry is about to step into the 21st century. With NO OPPOSITION to our 2019 bill, scope expansion now seems inevitable! MOA is working on the steps, which include CE and licensure requirements...and of course, CELEBRATION! By next week, we'll have more to report, but for now...enjoy the sunny forecast of good weather to come!
In the meantime, please SAVE THE DATE for this year's MOA Annual Convention -
Friday-Sunday, Nov 1-3 at the Gaylord, National Harbor. 

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3-2-1...Scope Expansion Lift Off!

Posted By MOA Admin, Tuesday, March 19, 2019
Launching the New & Improved Maryland Optometry Practice Act Version 2.0

This year's legislation to modernize the Maryland Optometry Practice Act continues to soar through the Maryland General Assembly. As of yesterday, the cross-filed legislation had received an unanimous vote by each bill's originating body (165-0 House | 47-0 Senate). The bills have now crossed over to be voted on by the other chamber and remain on course to become law. If our scope expansion legislation passes this Session, March 1, 2020 will become a historic day for Maryland Optometry. Additional authorities granted to therapeutically certified optometrists under the new law will greatly enhance patient access to primary eye care through the delivery of services previously provided only by an ophthalmologist. See below for highlights on potential scope expansion privileges and stay tuned for a more comprehensive update next week.
 
In the meantime, please help Maryland carry over our advocacy momentum to the federal level by joining your colleagues and optometry students from around the country as part of the Maryland Delegation at the 2019 AOA on the Hill Conference on Tuesday, April 9 in Washington, D.C. Sign up HERE to join the Delegation as we meet with Maryland Senators and Representatives to push for pro-optometry legislation and initiatives on the Hill. 

2020 Scope Expansion - New Authority Highlights

Independent Management of Open Angle Glaucoma Patients 
  • Referral Required IF:  
    • Target IOP is not reached
    • Clinical stability cannot be documented within 12 months 
Corneal/Conjunctival Foreign Body Removal
  • No tool restrictions (other than scalpel)
  • Central Axis - may not perforate Bowman's membrane
  • Outside Central Axis - no deeper than mid-stroma
Ordering/Performing Tests
  • Cultures/Swabs permitted
  • Bloodwork permitted (in consultation w/patient's physician) 
  • Must provide report of bloodwork results to consulting physician
  • Genetic testing prohibited
  • Non-radiographic image testing permitted
Rx Authority  (open ended with exception of restrictions below) 

Prohibited:

  • Rx to children under 16 years of age
  • Rx of any glaucoma medication to children under 18
  • Rx of oral anti-fungals
  • Rx of oral immuno-modulatory agents
  • Rx of oral immuno-suppresives (oral steroids - 1 month max dosage - permitted with physician consult)
  • Rx of oral and topical anti-metabolites
  • Rx of controlled dangerous substances

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A New Era for Maryland Optometry!

Posted By MOA Admin, Tuesday, March 12, 2019
Modernizing Maryland Optometry has been a "long winding road" to quote John Lennon, but our destination is now just around the corner.  At our meeting with ophthalmology last week, the groundwork was laid for a meaningful compromise to expand the scope of practice of Maryland Optometry this Session. Collaborative and positive discussions continued throughout the week and over the weekend, culminating in amendment language agreed to by both parties. Yesterday, HB 471 with amendments received a FAVORABLE UNANIMOUS VOTE by the Health Occupations and Long Term Care Subcommittee  of the House Government Operations Committee. The cross-file bill, SB 447, is being amended identically in the Senate and both bills will receive a full committee vote before the end of the week. I dare not speak of anything being "inevitable" at this point, but with both parties signed-off on the new compromise legislation, its chances for passage this Session are good - really good! Stay tuned for more details about the compromise and what could very well be a new era for Maryland Optometry!

Once again, the MOA wants to thank everyone who helped us along the road including: MOA and MSEPS members and representative ODs and M.D.s who helped negotiate this year's compromise, MOA PAC and P.O.P. supporters, MOA lobbyists and the many Key ODs and advocates who took action in support of our legislation, especially those who took time out of their busy schedules to attend meetings with legislators and/or testify at bill hearings.  We could not have made it this far without your help!
 

Jennifer Cohen
Executive Director

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Optometry/Ophthalmology Compromise Being Considered

Posted By Cheryl Frazier, Thursday, March 7, 2019
Over the last week, there has been a whirlwind of activity surrounding our scope expansion bill and advocacy efforts in Annapolis. After a Senate Hearing and House Sub-Committee Work Session last week, representatives from organized Optometry (MOA) and Ophthalmology (MSEPS) met this Monday in an attempt to work out a compromise agreement. With only doctors there, politics was taken out of the equation resulting in a respectful and rational dialogue that lasted more than 4 hours. The result? COMPROMISE! Yes, we may see the dawn of a new era of Maryland Optometry. As always, the devil is in the details and so we remain cautious BUT OPTIMISTIC. 
More to come soon, so stay tuned...

MOA also want to acknowledge and thank the optometry and ophthalmology diplomats who attended the compromise meeting. (Drs. Kevin Johnson, Robert Stutman, Scott LaBorwit, David Baranano, David Glasser and Sonny Goel) 

 

 
Jennifer Cohen
Executive Director

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