Regulatory / Legislative Committee Nancy Ehrlich, RVT - Chair and Liaison
A CaRVTA Regulatory/Legislative Committee member is in attendance at all VMB, RVT Task Force, and MDC meetings to report on information that is important to our members, as well as to represent CaRVTA when appropriate. The Leg/Reg Committee is looking for more committee members. If you are interested, be sure to e-mail Nancy Ehrlich at email@example.com. Most state meetings take place in Sacramento, although VMB meetings sometimes are scheduled for Southern California.
CaRVTA works hard to make sure our members' voices are heard in Sacramento, from representation at California's Veterinary Medical Board meetings, VMB committee meetings and the State legislature to member e-news and alerts. Your CaRVTA Board also works with the State government to promote legislation favorable to the RVT profession, such as adding an RVT to the VMB and granting title protection for RVTs. In addition to regulations and laws, the VMB is also the RVT licensing body. Below, we have listed important VMB tools and resources that student and professional RVTs will find useful throughout their careers.
The Emergency Fee Increase was approved by the Office of Administrative Law (OAL) on January 27, 2020 and went into effect on that date. Anyone whose application was sent in prior to January 27 and included the fee payment, will not be charged the new fees.
July 24, 2020
Nancy Ehrlich, RVT
Regulatory/Legislative Advocate, CaRVTA
Multidisciplinary Advisory Committee (MDC): The MDC met on July 22, 2020 with all members present via WebEx.
The Complaint Process Audit Committee reported that a Board consultant will review all expert reports prior to submitting to ensure that they are accurate in relation to the standards of care and the law. They also reported that the Board is limiting the use of Division of Investigation investigators and using more hospital inspectors to investigate cases to save time and money.
The MDC has created a survey that it emailed to all of the premises for which they have email addresses, which represent about 50% of all premises. The purpose of the survey is to determine if sufficient funds can be raised by changing the Premise Permit fee to allow a significant decrease in the RVT fees. The survey is asking about the number of DVMs and RVTs employed by the premise. The goal is to create a tiered Premise fee based on the number of veterinarians employed. If a new Premise Permit fee schedule can be worked out that would create sufficient funds, it would be added to the Sunset bill, which would not take effect until 1/22. The MDC hopes to have more information by the next meeting.
Kristi Pawlowski, RVT was elected Chair and Dr. Kevin Lazarcheff was elected Vice-Chair for the upcoming year.
Future agenda items include: Cannabis Guidelines, Complaint Process Audit, Telemedicine, Dental Radiography, RVT/Nurse Initiative, Duties of Managing Licensee, VCPR – tied to clinic or DVM, Foreign Graduate RVTs.
Future meeting dates have not been set.
Veterinary Medical Board (VMB): The VMB met n July 23, 2020 with all members present via WebEx.
Carrie Holmes, the new Deputy director for Board and Bureau Relations introduced herself to the Board.
Kristi Pawlowski, RVT presented the MDC report. She stated that the MDC should know by October if the survey they sent out has provided sufficient information to come up with a new Premise Permit fee schedule. If the survey is insufficient, the MDC plans to add the question to the envelope in which the Premise Permit forms are mailed out.
The VMB made 2 appointments to the MDC. Leah Shufelt, RVT was reappointed for a second term. Dr. Jaimie Payton was appointed to the DVM open position.
The VMB moved on to a discussion of pending legislation. First bill was AB2028, which would require boards to publish additional materials on-line prior to meetings. The VMB is opposed unless amended due to the increased work-load and cost. Next was SB627, the bill that would allow DVMs to recommend cannabis for their patients. This bill is now stalled. Next was SB1115, the bill that would change blood banking rules for animals. That bill is also stalled. The final bill discussed was SB1347. This bill would allow unlicensed personnel at shelters to administer vaccines, prophylactic medications and certain first-aid measures after a 4 hour training course. Both CVMA and the VMB are opposed unless the bill is amended.
Next was a discussion of proposed regulations. Due to a request by the public, a public hearing will be held on August 13 regarding the Animal Rehabilitation regulation. The VMB voted to approve changes to Sec. 2036, which adds Drug Compounding for RVTs to Indirect Supervision and moves Casting and Splinting to Indirect Supervision. They also approved a motion to amend Sec. 2068.5 to remove the 5-year limit and 24 hour minimum months from the Alternate Route requirements. The VMB voted to amend Sec. 2010 to remove the need to reapply after failing a licensing exam. This will save candidates money and the VMB staff time. The VMB also voted to repeal Sec. 2068.7, the Limited Term Eligibility Window, as it is no longer valid.
Jennifer Loredo, RVT, the RVT Member of the VMB, stated in her RVT Report that the VMB should explore using Sec. 4841.5, which allows the VMB to determine equivalent education to RVT School, to review applications from foreign graduate RVTs.
Kathy Bowler and Dr. Mark Nunez reported on National Association involvements. They reported that the American Association of State Boards (AAVSB) did a survey of RVTs and RVTgs (4-year degree) to see if there was any difference in their job duties. The survey showed that there was not a significant difference in job tasks being performed. They are also discussing a Master’s Degree program for RVTs, but question if it would be cost effective considering the lack of difference between an RVT and an RVTg.
During the Executive Reports, it was noted that the VMB’s budget is in better shape than expected – perhaps due to the large fees increases imposed this year. The VMB is working on decreasing the time to return phone calls and suggests that it is preferable to contact the VMB by email at firstname.lastname@example.org for a faster response. They are also working on up-dating their web site to make it more user-friendly. The VMB is also working with the AAVSB to get the exam statistics by RVT School as required by CA regulations. The AAVSB wants to charge as much as $5000 for the data. The VMB is working with them to try to reduce the cost.
Future meeting dates have not been set.
Laws and Policies Regarding Marijuana, Hemp and AnimalsAB-485 - Mill Bred Dogs, Cats, RabbitsAB-1522 - Sick Leave ActVeterinary Assistant Controlled Substance Permit
Unlicensed Veterinary Activity
When the VMB receives a complaint about unlicensed activity, it first investigates the complaint. Second, it sends a Cease & Desist letter to the individual, giving them an opportunity to explain whether or not they are actually engaged in the unlicensed activity. If they are performing the activity and do not desist, they are issued a citation and fine. They may also be referred to the local District Attorney for criminal prosecution. The VMB has passed a motion to direct its legal counsel to investigate further enforcement options.
For information about how to file a complaint - CLICK HERE
FINGERPRINTING OF VETERINARY LICENSEES
Some veterinarians and RVTs are receiving notifications from the Veterinary Medical Board (VMB) that they need to be fingerprinted in order to renew their license. We received the following information from VMB regarding this requirement.
“The fingerprint requirement is not a new requirement. California Code of Regulations (CCR) section 2010.05 states, in part, the following:
As a condition of renewal of a license, a veterinarian who was initially licensed prior to January 1, 1960, a registered veterinary technician who was initially licensed prior to January 1, 2004, or any licensee for whom an electronic record of the submission of fingerprints no longer exists or was never created, shall furnish to the Department of Justice a full set of fingerprints for the purpose of conducting a criminal history record check and to undergo a state and federal level criminal offender record information search conducted through the Department of Justice.
This regulation took effect in 2012 after a legislative change to BPC section 144 requiring fingerprint results from DOJ and FBI (only DOJ was required prior to that). At that time, all boards listed under BPC section 144 underwent rulemaking to bring current licensees into compliance during their renewal period. Unfortunately, the licensing system at the time was not designed to check for or hold renewals in the absence of fingerprint results. BreEZe, however, was recently designed to check for DOJ and FBI results. If results are missing, licensees are notified accordingly.
If a licensee/registrant was fingerprinted before, but the system is indicating the need for fingerprint results, it’s possible it was before the fingerprints were required to go to the FBI. It’s also possible that when a licensee/registrant submitted fingerprints, the box was not checked to send to the FBI. Regardless, if a licensee/registrant received notification from the Board indicating the need for fingerprint results, it’s because an electronic record of the submission of fingerprints no longer exists or was never created.”
VMB FEE INCREASE (3.8.18)