This year North Carolina legislators actually kept their promise to wrap-up their work by the July 4 holiday. Several pieces of legislation affecting North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) members were enacted this short session, including:

  • HB728 Which amended laws and fees pertaining to the North Carolina Medical Board, including increasing licensing fees from $175 per year to $250 per year; limiting service on the Board to no more than two complete 3-year terms in a lifetime; limiting the use of Maintenance of Certification as part of licensing decisions and increasing access to Physicians Health Program (PHP) assessments. The NCMS along with the NCMB and the PHP had been working on this bill for four years to ensure the Board had adequate revenue to operate and to clarify and refine the Board’s processes.
  • Provided funding to enhance the Controlled Substance Reporting System (CSRS) software, and ensuring the platform will be integrated into North Carolina’s Health Information Exchange (HIE) and allowing it to talk to systems in adjoining states. The legislation also included a provision requiring any licensed physician authorized to dispense opioids to register on the CSRS. These items are included as part of the budget bill, HB1030 (beginning on page 89).

To get a complete rundown of the other legislation of note to NCMS members, watch NCMS General Counsel and EVP for Government Affairs and Health Policy Steve Keene’s video review of the session. Also, watch your Bulletin and the NCMS website for release of the 2016 NCMS Legislative Summary for a comprehensive listing of all bills pertaining to physicians and physician assistants introduced during this short session.