BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    




                                                                  AB 1760
                                                                  Page A
          Date of Hearing:   March 11, 2008

                   ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE ON BUSINESS AND PROFESSIONS
                                   Mike Eng, Chair
                   AB 1760 (Galgiani) - As Amended:  March 5, 2008
           
          SUBJECT  :   Veterinarians and registered veterinary technicians.

           SUMMARY  :   Requires the California Veterinary Medical Board  
          (Board) to offer the veterinary licensing exam at least twice a  
          year and makes other changes related to the licensure and  
          regulation of veterinary professionals.  Specifically,  this  
          bill  :

          1)Clarifies that the Governor appoints one public member to the  
            Board.

          2)Requires the Board to issue certificates of registration.

          3)Delineates reciprocity requirements, and requires the Board to  
            issue licenses to applicants who fulfill such requirements.   
            This bill also allows applicants to use certificates issued by  
            the Program for Assessment of Education Equivalence to fulfill  
            reciprocity requirements.

          4)Requires the Board to issue temporary licenses to eligible  
            applicants who meet specified requirements and agree to  
            complete the approved educational curriculum on regionally  
            specific and important diseases and conditions in California.

          5)Allows the Board to extend the expiration date of temporary  
            licenses.

          6)Makes various technical and conforming amendments. 

           EXISTING LAW  provides for the licensure and regulation of the  
          practice of veterinary medicine by the Board.  Requires the  
          Board to ascertain by means of examination given at least once  
          each year, the professional qualifications of applicants for  
          licensure and to issue a license to every qualified applicant.  

           FISCAL EFFECT  :   Unknown

           COMMENTS  :   










                                                                  AB 1760
                                                                  Page B
           Purpose of this bill  .  According to the author: "It doesn't make  
          sense that we would spend California tax dollars to educate  
          veterinarians in our state universities, only to have them leave  
          California to practice in another state because it takes too  
          long to get a license in California.  We need to ensure that  
          taxpayer dollars are educating California's future workforce,  
          and that we are able to meet the veterinary needs of our  
          agricultural industry.  AB 1760 will ensure that the licensing  
          test is offered at least twice a year, as well as, change the  
          reciprocity standards for veterinarians educated outside of  
          California; helping California meet the high demands of  
          veterinarians in our state." 
           
          Background  .  This bill is sponsored by the Western United  
          Dairyman and seeks to address the current veterinarian shortage  
          in California, especially in regards to the farming community.   
          According to the California Veterinary Medical Association  
          (CVMA), there are approximately 7,500 veterinarians in  
          California and 222 graduate from veterinary school each year.   
          According to a November 2004 report by the University of  
          California Subcommittee on Veterinary Medical Education, the  
          current national shortfall of at least 1,500 veterinarians could  
          grow to 15,000 or more over the next 20 years.  The author's  
          office notes that the current lack of licensed veterinarians has  
          a direct effect on the safety of our food supply, and cites an  
          American Veterinary Medical Association Study stating that the  
          demand for "food supply veterinarians" (farm animal  
          veterinarians) is predicted to increase 12 to 13 percent over  
          the next eight years.  This research also shows that there will  
          most likely be a four to five percent decrease of these types of  
          veterinarians obtaining jobs in our agricultural and farming  
          communities because of the shortage of veterinarians in this  
          state.

           Suggested amendment .  This bill proposes a technical clean-up of  
          current statute by inserting the language "and one public  
          member" into Business and Professions Code Section 4802.  The  
          committee may wish to recommend the following clarifying  
          technical amendment:

          On page 3, strike line 6-7 inclusive, and insert:

          "The Governor shall appoint the five members qualified as  
          provided in Section 4801, one of whom shall be a public member.  
          The Senate?"









                                                                  AB 1760
                                                                  Page C

           Support  .  The Western United Dairymen write: "The dairy industry  
          is in short supply of 'large animal' veterinarians?Our  
          membership believes the overall shortage is due not only to the  
          lack of graduates, but lack of incentives for graduates to enter  
          the veterinarian medical field.  AB 1760 provides an 'incentive'  
          for graduates to test and license in California, and hopefully,  
          to stay and practice here."

          The California Farm Bureau Federation states: "The Farm Bureau  
          supports AB 1760 to help alleviate the shortage of large animal  
          veterinarians in California.  California's livestock producers  
          rely on veterinarians for preventive herd health medicine and  
          offer treatment of sick and injured livestock.  Veterinarians  
          not only handle diseases that affect our animals, but are also  
          important to the diseases that are transferable between humans  
          and animals.  There is a growing shortage of veterinarians in  
          production, agriculture, academia, and regulatory medicine  
          throughout the United States and the Farm Bureau believes that  
          this bill can be a piece towards helping solve the growing  
          shortage of veterinarians."
           
          Previous Legislation  .  SB 2003 (Knight), Chapter 1070, Statutes  
          of 1998, required the Board to issue temporary licenses to  
          practice veterinary medicine, changed requirements for testing  
          of applicants, required and authorized the Board to set and  
          appropriate the examination and license fees, and created a  
          one-year temporary license for qualifying internship or  
          residency programs.
           
          REGISTERED SUPPORT / OPPOSITION  :   

           Support 
           Western United Dairymen (sponsor)
          California Cattlemen's Association
          California Farm Bureau Federation
          California Veterinary Medical Board


           Opposition 
           
          None on file.
           
          Analysis Prepared by  :    Josefina Ramirez / B. & P. / (916)  
          319-3301 









                                                                  AB 1760
                                                                  Page D