HBA-NRS S.B. 332 77(R) BILL ANALYSIS Office of House Bill AnalysisS.B. 332 By: Moncrief Public Health 5/14/2001 Engrossed BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE Currently, the Medical Practice Act prohibits physicians from giving patients free medications under an indigent pharmaceutical program. Removing this prohibition would not infringe on pharmacists' dispensing authority. Senate Bill 332 provides that the Medical Practice Act does not prohibit physicians from giving patients medication supplied by a pharmaceutical company for an indigent pharmaceutical program. RULEMAKING AUTHORITY It is the opinion of the Office of House Bill Analysis that this bill does not expressly delegate any additional rulemaking authority to a state officer, department, agency, or institution. ANALYSIS Senate Bill 332 amends the Occupations Code to provide that provisions in the Medical Practice Act governing the authority of a physician to provide certain drugs and supplies do not prohibit a physician from supplying to a patient, free of charge, a drug provided to the physician by a drug manufacturer for an indigent pharmaceutical program if, in the physician's opinion, it is advantageous to the patient, in adhering to a course of treatment prescribed by the physician, to receive the drug. EFFECTIVE DATE On passage, or if the Act does not receive the necessary vote, the Act takes effect September 1, 2001.