Idaho State Board of Optometry
Bureau of Occupational Licenses
1109 Main Street, Suite 220
Boise, Idaho 83702-5642
(208) 334-3233

Minutes of November 21, 2007

CONFERENCE CALL

ROLL CALL:              Daniel Tiller, Board Chair
                                                Michael Flandro, Board Member
                                                Donald James, Board Member
                                                Jack Zarybnisky, Board Member
                                                Frank Barnhart, Board Member

      BUREAU STAFF:             Tana Cory, Bureau Chief
                                                Emily MacMaster, Deputy Attorney General
                                                Roger Hales, Administrative Attorney
                                                Carrie Gilstrap, Secretary

 OTHERS PRESENT VIA TELEPHONE:       Rodney White, Larry Benton

 

 

The meeting was called to order at 12:35 p.m. Mountain Standard Time

 

Dr. Tiller began the meeting by reminding the board that at the last meeting they had decided to send a letter to licensees regarding CPT codes; however, since that time there new information has been learned.

 

Larry Benton stated that he had a conversation at a meeting he attended with Ken McClure, lobbyist for the Idaho Medical Association. It was at a legislative advisory meeting where the IMA was giving their full agenda for the upcoming legislative session. During this meeting they stated that they would be looking out for any legislation from the Optometry Board regarding surgery.

 

Mr. Benton stated that Mr. McClure inquired about the Optometry Board. Mr. Benton answered by letting him know the Board had decided to rescind the letter which identifies specific CPT codes for optometrists. Mr. McClureís response was that he didnít understand why the board would want to take away codes that the IMA doesnít have a problem with.

 

Larry Benton stated that if the Board takes away or disqualifies codes that arenít conflicted, then it will set the Board back. He encourages the Board to not give away codes the Board doesnít need to.

 

Roger Hales asked if Mr. Benton felt Mr. McClure would go back to the Idaho Board of Medicine (IBOM) and express his view. Mr. Benton stated yes.

Discussion was held on the intent of IBOM and reasonable position the optometry board has taken.  The codes referenced in the most recent draft of the proposed letter to licensees are not being opposed by the IBOM.

 

Mr. Hales stated the Board needs to consider that the IBOM has threatened a declaratory judgement action and may challenge certain things that are within their scope and in addition, the board should have adopted them by rule. If the Optometry Board were to lose, then they would be responsible for the attorney fees, etc. Mr. Hales suggested the Board sit down with the sub-committee and see how they feel about the latest letter drafted.

Dr. Zarybnisky stated he doesnít want to give up anymore than they have to.

 

Mr. Hales added that the board needs to be careful on how they view this and the position they are taking because their charge is to protect the public.

Dr. Barnhart stated he has trouble sending out any letter that isnít based on law or rule because it could still be challenged.  Mr. Hales stated he understands the boardís position and suggests that they explore this a little more. The board could table the letter that was to be sent out.

 

A motion was made by Dr. Flandro to table sending the letter to licensed optometrists as requested in the minutes of October 26, 2007 and direct counsel to meet with the attorney of the IBOM to discuss any concerns. Seconded by Dr. Zarybnisky, motion carried.    

 

Rodney White and Larry Benton exited the teleconference.

 

Roll call was re-established.

 

Emily MacMaster, Deputy Attorney General, presented disciplinary memorandums to the board.

 

OPT-2007-1 and OPT-2007-3

Dr. Barnhart recused himself from the discussion. The board gave the Attorney Generalís Office direction on how to proceed with these two cases.

 

OPT-2008-1

A motion was made by Dr. James to close the matter and direct the Attorney Generalís Office to send a cease and desist letter and further referral to the prosecutors office if they fail to comply. Seconded by Dr. Zarybnisky, motion carried.

 

Emily MacMaster suggests the board may want to draft legislation regarding plano contacts and unlicensed practice.

 

A motion was made by Dr. Flandro to adjourn the meeting at 1:30 p.m. Seconded by Dr. Zarybnisky, motion carried.