If the NC Legislature has its way on Monday (4/4/11), non-licensed health practitioners (naturopaths, homeopaths, herbalists, aromatherapists, some midwives and others) will become felons. Important information about the bill, including a link to the bill and talking points are below. Please contact Governor Purdue's office and urge her to veto it! Her contact info is below.
Here is a link to the bill: http://www.ncleg.net/gascripts/BillLookUp/BillLookUp.pl?Session=2011++&BillID=s31
I am hoping that you will add your voice in opposition to this bill and contact Governor Bev Purdue and urge her to veto it.
A friend spoke to the Governor's office this morning. They said that after House approval it will be sent to the Governor the next day (Tuesday). The Governor will have 10 days to sign or veto. She sometimes acts quickly and sometimes not. I asked that she delay a decision on this so that people can weigh in, as this was a sleeper bill that flew under the radar until now.
Please get as many people as you can to call and email the Governor's constituent services office and urge for a veto. The contact info is:
1-800-662-7952 and firstname.lastname@example.org
We really need a strong outcry. Please pass the word/social network as best as you can.
Here are some talking points:
1. SB 31, a bill to clarify the penalty for the unauthorized practice of medicine, is a horrific bill with unintended consequences. If SB31 becomes law, it will increase healthcare costs for everybody because it will shut down the option consumers currently have to seek care from alternative healthcare providers whose services are paid for out of pocket. Most alternative care providers are not covered by insurance policies, and consumers who would proactively choose to pay for healthcare services out of pocket, will suddenly be forced to find MD's and make use of their insurance thereby raising costs for all. Alternative health care consumers actually provide a much needed pressure release on the rising costs of healthcare in NC. Shutting down their access to alternative choices in care will increase health care costs in NC, and this is bad for everybody.
2. Felony charges are completely unwarranted for professionals who have been legitimately helping North Carolinians for years. The significant unemployment it could cause simply due to fear of a felony charge is not included in the bill analysis.
3. There are already laws on the books to handle any injury caused by someone impersonating a medical professional. This bill is unnecessary and grows the government bureaucracy at a time when fiscal resources are already too thin.
4. Public testimony at the House sub-commitee was not taken, which is outrageous, especially given that the room was packed even though the meeting was moved with no notice.
5. This bill was under the radar and the public didn't begin to become aware of it until its final committee meeting. Public upset is growing and it is imperative that the Governor consider our concerns.
6. Please add your own story about why midwifery and/or alternative and complementary care are important to you.