Illinois PA Legislative Issues
The Illinois Academy of Physician Assistants (IAPA) is legislatively engaged on both the state and national levels. IAPA collaborates with state partners as well as our national organization, the American Academy of Physicians (IAPA) to advance legislation protecting our patients and practice. The information to the right provides information about current legislation being tracked and on our policy agenda. Please contact IAPA at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
a) “Elimination of PA-physician ratio” (Senate Bill 2904/House Bill 4815)
—Summary: This historic PA legislation will eliminate the barrier in Illinois that allows only five physician assistants (PAs) to practice in a collaboration agreement with one doctor. IAPA believes that PAs and their collaborating physicians should determine this at the practice level based on education, experience and patient population needs.
We need your help! Please contact your Illinois Senators and Representatives asking them to support this important legislation which will help improve patient access. To find out who your Senator or Representative is, click here.
Update 4/26/18: The Illinois State Senate yesterday overwhelmingly approved bipartisan legislation that would help PAs across the state by modernizing practice requirements. Senate Bill 2904 would eliminate the 5-to-1, PA to physician ratio in Illinois. With the Senate’s passage, it puts PAs in a strong position as IAPA continues to negotiate with Illinois State Medical Society and Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation.
The bill, sponsored by Senator Heather Steans, D-Chicago, will still go through changes in the Illinois House of Representatives but the 47-4 vote sends a strong message of support from senators.
The bill also has the support of Southern Illinois University School of Medicine and the Illinois Primary Health Care Association.
We will keep you posted as this bill advances through the process. The Spring session of the Illinois General Assembly ends May 31, 2018.
b) “Illinois PA Practice Act Sunset 2017”
On Aug. 25, Gov. Bruce Rauner signed into law Senate Bill 1585 modernizing the state’s PA practice act, which will allow PAs to expand their ability to provide top-notch medical care in Illinois. The bill passed in both the House and the Senate without opposition and will allow PAs to better serve patients in rural and underserved areas and those covered by Medicaid. It also extends the PA practice act for Illinois’ 3,000 PAs until 2028.
The bill was chiefly sponsored by Senator Iris Y. Martinez and Rep. Cynthia Soto, together with 30 bipartisan cosponsors.
c) “PAs and the Prescription Monitoring Program (PMP)”
(1/1/2018) As many of you know, PAs across Illinois are now required to register for the state’s Prescription Monitoring Program (PMP) and access the PMP for certain prescriptions. Here is a list of Frequently Asked Questions from the Illinois Department of Human Services for you to review and if you have further questions on these, you can contact the Department of Human Services at www.ilpmp.org or email our lobbyist Dan Shomon at email@example.com.
Click here to see the common FAQ’s associated with the PMP.
d) “PAs and Illinois Medicaid”
Summary: For many years there has been confusion surrounding PAs and Illinois Medicaid patients. This section is to meant to confirm and clarify any confusion surrounding the submission of claims rendered by PAs. This section shall not be considered legal advice. For any specific billing questions, please contact your local Medicaid contractor.
1. PAs and enrollment
As of 2015, PAs may now be enrolled as providers in the Medicaid system. Instructions for enrollment may be found on the Medicaid IMPACT website.
2. PAs and Medicaid Claims submission process
PAs may submit claims for Medicaid patients in the following manner:
- The PA’s collaborating physician of record or the PA’s employer should be listed as the “billing provider” of services.
- PAs should be listed on a claim as the “rendering provider” of services.
Of note: Although PAs may be now enrolled in the IMPACT system, they cannot submit Medicaid claims using their own NPI number. Claims submitted with the PA listed as the “billing provider” of services and using the PA’s NPI number will be rejected.
3. PAs and their collaborating physician of record
- The PA’s collaborating physician does NOT need to be present on site at the time of services rendered. Definitions surrounding collaborating relationship of a PA and his/her collaborating physician may be found in Section 7.5 of the Illinois Physician Assistant Practice Act of 1987.
“…The collaborating relationship under a written collaborative agreement shall not be construed to require the personal presence of a physician at the place where services are rendered…”
For any additional questions about PAs and the Medicaid claim submissions process, please contact: Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS) at 217-782-5565, visiting their website, or contact the Illinois Academy of PAs at 630-352-2216
e) “Illinois PAs and Optimal Team Practice (OTP)”
Summary: The Illinois Academy of PAs legislative team is working toward modernizing PA practice and moving toward OTP. OTP will eliminate arbitrary barriers to PA practice and will help improve healthcare for all patients. OTP in Illinois will need to be done in steps and each year the IAPA will need your help to modernize the profession. If you are interested in helping join the effort, please join the IAPA.
Or…if you are interested in volunteering for a project, committee or the board, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org and one of our board members will contact you.
For more information on OTP, please go to the AAPA website.
f) PAs and Ionizing Radiation
History – the IAPA changed the (420 ILCS 40/) Radiation Protection Act of 1990 to include PAs in section 5, pending rules to be written. Agreed Rules have yet to be written.
Issues – Controversies have occurred by the administrators at IEMA, stating that PAs cannot facilitate procedures without a physician in the room. Their definition is from (Source: Amended at 32 Ill. Reg. 3693, effective February 29, 2008)
1) Operator Restrictions. No person shall intentionally administer radiation to a human being with a fluoroscopic radiation machine unless such person is licensed to practice a treatment of human ailments under the Medical Practice Act of 1987, the Illinois Dental Practice Act or the Podiatric Medical Practice Act of 1987,” …
2) An accredited medical radiographer may operate a fluoroscope as directed by, and under the direct supervision of, a licensed practitioner who is physically present and participating in the procedure;”…
However, the Rules do go on to includes PAs, not to do fluoroscopies, but to give authorization: http://www.ilga.gov/commission/jcar/admincode/032/032003600000300R.html