It’s back – Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) has reintroduced prescription mandate legislation into Congress. Misleadingly named the “Fairness to Pet Owners Act” (H.R. 623), this legislation would force veterinarians to provide written copies of all prescriptions they issue for companion animals, regardless whether clients request or want them.
The extra regulatory burden imposed by prescription mandates would take time away from what matters most to veterinarians: caring for their patients. Many veterinary clinics are small businesses that simply don’t have the time or resources to deal with extra paperwork. Plus, this legislation is unnecessary because clients who want written prescriptions should be able to receive them by simply asking. The AVMA’s Principles of Veterinary Medical Ethics urge veterinarians to fulfill prescription requests when asked by a client, and a majority of states have similar policies.
The AVMA will devote substantive resources to opposing this bill in Congress. Our Governmental Relations Division staff is meeting regularly with lawmakers in Washington, DC, to demonstrate how this bill would hurt veterinarians and their clients.
To make the most effective case against this bill, we need your help too. We want to hear from you on how this bill could impact your veterinary clinic so we can share these stories with lawmakers and media to illustrate the negative impacts of prescription mandates. For instance, would this legislation reduce the number of patients you can see or force you to raise prices for clients?
If you have a story to share, you can reach out directly to the Governmental Relations Division via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. If we plan to use your story publicly, we will contact you for permission before sharing.
Another great way to help stop prescription mandates is by visiting our Congressional Advocacy Network and using the online form there to send your lawmakers a letter asking them to oppose this bill. This action is quick and easy, and goes a long way in helping to build opposition to this legislation.
We know prescription mandates are bad for the veterinary community, and we’re doing everything we can to protect veterinarians from this legislation. Visit our prescription mandates page to learn more about our advocacy efforts around this issue.