STATE | ASPS & PA Society Fighting Optometric Scope Expansion
Optometrists across the country are working to expand their scope of practice beyond their education and training. In many states, they work to expand their scope of practice to include the performance of "minor" surgical procedures and/or injections. Unfortunately, Pennsylvania is no exception.
ASPS has been tracking the development of optometric scope expansion efforts in Pennsylvania throughout the course of 2018. In July, ASPS and the Robert H. Ivy Pennsylvania Society of Plastic Surgeons submitted comments in opposition to legislation that would allow optometrists to administer injections. While the full Senate has not acted on the measure, ASPS worked closely with the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) to deter Senate leadership from calling the bill for a vote in the upper house. ASPS and the Ivy Society submitted subsequent letters highlighting the societies' concerns with permitting optometrists to administer injections – especially botulinum toxins.
Due to optometrists' clear lack of training, these legislative efforts jeopardize patient safety. ASPS stands firmly alongside the AAO in opposing efforts that allow optometrists to perform any type of surgical procedure, including the administration of injections.