MISSOURI COALITION WANTS PSYCHOLOGISTS TO WRITE SCRIPTS
Missouri may joinLouisiana and NewMexico in allowinglicensed psychologiststo prescribecertainmedicationsfor the treatmentof mental health disorders underlegislation being championed by a grassrootscoalition of patients, concerned citizens,and health care professionals.
The group, Missouri Families for Accessto Comprehensive Treatment, arguesthat giving prescriptive authorityto psychologists will put the state at theforefront of providing safe, quality, mentalhealth care to patients, who cansometimes wait up to 8 months to seea psychiatrist for medication in underservedrural and inner-city communities.
Under the proposal, only licensed,doctoral psychologists who complete 2additional years of academic psychopharmacologytraining and pass anational qualifying psychopharmacologyexam would be eligible for prescriptionprivileges.
The American Psychological Association'spractice division reports that asmany as 8 more states are expected topursue psychologist prescribing lawsthis year.