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Florida: Improve OBS Standards of Patient Safety

Over the past few years, Florida's patients have been under increased risk from reckless surgical practices due to the state's office-based surgery oversight. ASPS worked closely with the Florida Society of Plastic Surgeons in recent months on legislative initiatives to address the recent influx of adverse incidents and mortalities at Florida surgical practices. The Society awarded FSPS a $10,000 state advocacy grant to advocate on office-based surgery legislation and state rulemaking on gluteal fat grafting (BBL) procedures to ensure greater patient safety.

During the 2019 legislative session, ASPS joined FSPS by encouraging members of the House and Senate to immediately pass office-based surgery legislation, SB 732. This bill would ensure that all owners, operators, and physicians at office-based surgery centers are held accountable for standards of care by giving the Department of Health the authority to regulate all office-based surgery centers - not just physicians. Additionally, the legislation would ensure that unscrupulous practices are unable to reincorporate under a new practice name to avoid disciplinary action.

After the legislation passed both chambers, ASPS sent comments to Governor Ron DeSantis urging him to sign the bill into law, stressing the importance of this measure to protect Florida's patients from serious risk and bad actors at facilities in the state. The bill currently awaits Governor DeSantis' signature.

On June 6, FSPS continued their efforts to uphold patient safety in the state by calling on the Florida Board of Medicine to issue an emergency rule that would establish a standard of care for fat injection. During the hearing, the Board moved forward with issuing an emergency gluteal fat grafting (BBL) rule that would only allow injections into the subcutaneous space – explicitly prohibiting both submuscular and intramuscular injections. In response to the emergency rule and increased adverse incidents for BBL procedures, ASPS and four other plastic surgery societies issued a safety advisory to surgeons expressing concerns with the complications surrounding the procedure.

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