Bill allowing optometrists to prescribe approved

PHOENIX (AP) — The Arizona House passed a bill early Thursday that would allow optometrists to prescribe some drugs that is set for a vote in the Senate.

The 34-22 vote was the last of the session and come just minutes before the Legislature adjourned.

Opponents of the bill called it dangerous at a Wednesday press briefing. Republican Rep. Heather Carter of Cave Creek and Sen. Kelli Ward of Lake Havasu City say the bill allowing the non-physicians who examine patients for eye problems and glasses was rammed through the Legislature.

Senators approved House Bill 2380 on a 20-7 vote Wednesday.

Supporters say optometrists are skilled medical professionals who need the authority to treat their patients.

Carter and Ward say they believe letting optometrists prescribe certain medications puts patients at risk because they don't have the training to properly monitor for adverse reactions.

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