California provider-status bill signed into law

October 2, 2013

California Governor Jerry Brown has signed provider-status legislation authorizing pharmacists throughout the Golden State to give a full range of immunizations, as well as dispensing birth control pills and certain medications for international travel.

California Governor Jerry Brown has signed provider-status legislation authorizing pharmacists throughout the Golden State to give a full range of immunizations, as well as dispensing birth control pills and certain medications for international travel.

SB 493 was sponsored by Sen. Ed Hernandez (D-West Covina) and will go into effect January 1, 2014. The new law also establishes board recognition and training requirements for an advanced practice pharmacist with expanded functions. 

“We appreciate the Governor’s signature on this landmark legislation,” stated Jon Roth, CEO of the California Pharmacists Association. “With the implementation of the Affordable Care Act at a time when the number of primary care physicians continues to shrink, we believe this legislation will help ensure that the millions of new patients receiving insurance will be able to access healthcare services through their local pharmacist.”

The new law authorizes pharmacists to administer drugs and biological products. It will also expand the duties pharmacists in California can legally perform, including furnishing self-administered hormonal contraceptives, prescribing smoking cessation drugs, and prescribing medications not requiring a diagnosis that are recommended for international travelers.

California pharmacists can only give flu shots and emergency contraception under present state law.