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A.B. 2062 - Allied Health Credentialing Issues


Sponsor: Assemblymember Roger Hernandez (D)

Summary: This measure was amended into your issue scope May 1.

Current version (5/1/2014): Stipulates that a surgical technologist must complete either of the following: (i) A surgical technology educational program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs or by an organization recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation or the United States Department of Education.; or (ii) A training program for surgical technology provided by the United States Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard or Public Health Service.

Specifies that a surgical technologist must hold and maintain certification as a surgical technologist by a credentialing organization with a surgical technologist certification program that is accredited by either the National Commission for Certifying Agencies or the American National Standards Institute.

Current version (5/1/2014):

Amended version (4/10/2014):

Introduced version:

Status: Introduced 2/20/2014. Referred to Committee on Health 3/3/2014. Amended by author; referred to Committee on Health 4/10/2014. Hearing held; referred to Committee on Appropriations 4/22/2014. Amended by author; referred to Committee on Appropriations 5/1/2014. Hearing scheduled 5/7/2014.

Outlook: The hearing will be open to the public. Public testimony will be accepted. Written testimony should be submitted in advance of the scheduled hearing. A vote may be taken at the discretion of the committee chair.

The author amended this measure out of committee. The May 1 amendment provides for the training and certification requirements a surgical technologist must complete prior to practice.

The April 30 hearing was canceled at the request of the author.

This measure passed the Committee on Health, 19-0, and was referred to the Committee on Appropriations. The California State Council of the Service Employees International Union, the Association of Surgical Technologists, California Dietetic Association, California Health Collaborative California Labor Federation, and the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting support this measure. There is no registered opposition on file.

The April 10 amendment removes the requirement that individuals complete continuing education in surgical technology annually.

According to the author, surgical technologists are the only member of the surgical team with no required, mandated minimum level of education, training, or certification. The author states that surgical technologists are a key member of the surgical team in any operating room responsible for the environmental disinfection, safety and efficiency and that this is important because surgical site infections (SSIs) significantly drive up health care costs. The author asserts that nationwide, hospital costs are estimated at $20,785 per surgical site infection, accounting for $3.3 billion in total annual U.S. healthcare costs and that this bill will improve patient care safety while lowering health care costs by raising the education and training standards for surgical technologists in California.

The author is a member of the majority party. Democrats control both chambers of the Legislature as well as the office of the Governor.

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