Pair of New Texas Bills Push Independent Practice for APRNs

Posted By American Med Spa Association, Wednesday, March 17, 2021

A pair of bills filed in Texas would allow advance practice registered nurses (APRNs) to practice independently without supervision from physicians. Currently, APRNs in Texas must practice under a written supervision agreement with a physician; their scope of practice and prescriptive authority are defined in these written agreements. We will discuss how each of these new bills seek to change this situation.
Senate Bill 915 (SB 915) is sponsored by Senator Kelly Hancock; you can read the bill in full here. It has been referred to the Senate Business and Commerce Committee for further consideration. As introduced, SB 915 matches the language of House Bill 2029 (HB 2029), which we previously covered. It isn’t uncommon for multiple bills to be filed regarding popular law initiatives, and, frequently, bills will be amended and altered in the committee process, so it is unlikely that these will end up identical as they advance.
House Bill (HB 4362) is sponsored by Representative Stephanie Klick, the same sponsor as HB 2029; you can read the bill in full here. It is awaiting committee assignment for further consideration. HB 4362 makes multiple changes to several licensed scope of practices, including dental assistants and optometrists; it also makes APRNs independent practitioners. It has largely similar language to the other two bills mentioned above for granting independent practice and prescriptive authority.
We will be monitoring all three of these bills as they advance though the Texas legislative process this year. When there are several efforts trying to achieve the same goal, it is common for one bill to become a frontrunner and more likely to pass than the others. We would expect a similar dynamic here as well.