Attention Texas Prescribers

The Texas Medical Board at its December meeting adopted a rule change pertaining to the Texas Administrative Code, Chapter 193.8 Prescriptive Authority Agreements: Minimum Requirement.

Specifically, the amendments to Section 193.8, change the requirements set forth in paragraphs (9) – (11) and adds a new paragraph (12), relating to the frequency physicians must meet with physician assistants to whom they delegate and supervise. For further information, please see, Texas Medical Board Press Release (December 21, 2017) at:

SAMHSA Finalizes Changes to Part 2 Confidentiality Regulations

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, announced the finalization of proposed changes to the Confidentiality of Substance Use Disorder Patient Records regulation, 42 CFR Part 2 (Part 2). The changes became effective on February 2, 2018. The rule can be viewed at .

Part 2 protects the confidentiality of records relating to the identity, diagnosis, prognosis, or treatment of any patient records that are maintained in connection with the performance of any federally assisted program or activity relating to substance use disorder education, prevention, training, treatment, rehabilitation, or research. Under Part 2, a federally assisted substance use disorder program may only release patient identifying information with the individual’s written consent, pursuant to a court order, or under a few limited exceptions.

Some of the items contained in the Part 2 changes include:

  • The final rule permits additional disclosures of patient identifying information, with patient consent, to facilitate payment and healthcare operations such as claims management, quality assessment, and patient safety activities.
  • The final rule permits additional disclosures of patient identifying information to certain contractors, subcontractors, and legal representatives for the purpose of conducting a Medicare, Medicaid, or CHIP audit or evaluation.
  • The final rule will assist users of electronic health records (EHRs) by permitting use of an abbreviated notice of prohibition on re-disclosure more easily accommodated in EHR text fields.