BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    

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        SB 1050 (Yee)
        As Amended  April 22, 2010
        Majority vote 

         SENATE VOTE  :30-0  
         BUSINESS & PROFESSIONS     11-0 APPROPRIATIONS      17-0        
        |Ayes:|Hayashi, Conway, Eng,     |Ayes:|Fuentes, Conway,          |
        |     |Hernandez, Hill, Ma,      |     |Bradford,                 |
        |     |Nava, Niello, Ruskin,     |     |Charles Calderon, Coto,   |
        |     |Smyth, Logue              |     |Davis,                    |
        |     |                          |     |De Leon, Gatto, Hall,     |
        |     |                          |     |Harkey, Miller, Nielsen,  |
        |     |                          |     |Norby, Skinner, Solorio,  |
        |     |                          |     |Torlakson, Torrico        |
        |     |                          |     |                          |
         SUMMARY  :   Revises the membership of the Osteopathic Medical Board  
        of California (OMBC) and the Naturopathic Medicine Committee  
        (Committee), and clarifies the duties and responsibilities of the  
        Committee.  Specifically,  this bill  :   

        1)Specifies that the Committee is solely responsible for  
          implementing the Naturopathic Medicine Act, and that the Committee  
          shall be responsible for reviewing the quality of the practice of  
          naturopathic medicine carried out by persons licensed as  
          naturopathic doctors.

        2)States that the Committee's highest priority in exercising its  
          licensing, regulatory, and disciplinary functions is protection of  
          the public.  Whenever the protection of the public is inconsistent  
          with other interests sought to be promoted, the protection of the  
          public shall be paramount.

        3)Removes the two naturopathic doctors from OMBC and adds them to  
          the Committee, adds two public members to OMBC, and reduces  
          Committee membership by one physician and surgeon and one public  

        4)Deletes the requirement that the Committee get OMBC's approval to  
          appoint an executive officer, and permits the Committee to employ  
          other officers and employees as necessary to discharge its duties.  


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         FISCAL EFFECT  :   According to the Assembly Appropriations Committee,  
        annual professional fee-supported special fund costs of $20,000 to  
        $30,000 to the Naturopathic Committee. 

         COMMENTS  :  According to the author's office, "As part of the July  
        2009 Budget package, ABX4 20 [(Strickland), Chapter 18, Statutes of  
        2009 - 10 Fourth Extraordinary Session] changed the structure and  
        the composition of the OMBC by combining it with the Bureau of  
        Naturopathic Medicine (BNM).  For the first time in the board's  
        86-year history and in the only state in the country, two  
        non-physician providers would sit in judgment of California's  
        osteopathic physicians?.  ABX4 20 also created a Committee under the  
        auspices of the OMBC.

        "The integration of the two professions on the same oversight board  
        confuses and misleads the public by implying that the training,  
        education and credentialing of naturopathic doctors is equivalent to  
        that of osteopathic physicians and surgeons.  Osteopathic physicians  
        are engaged and qualified in the unlimited practice of medicine,  
        whereas naturopathic doctors are unable to independently prescribe  
        medication or perform surgery.  Patients may believe they're seeing  
        a physician when in fact they're visiting a naturopathic  
        practitioner, whose course of treatment is much different and more  
        "[This bill] would fix the abovementioned concerns by simply  
        changing the two naturopathic doctor seats on the board to two  
        public member seats.

        "This bill also changes the distribution of the existing nine seats  
        on the Naturopathic Medicine Committee?. [and], consistent with  
        existing law, authorizes the Committee to appoint an executive  
        officer and other officers and employees?. This bill would make the  
        Committee responsible for reviewing the quality of practice by  
        licensed naturopathic doctors and solely responsible for  
        implementing the Naturopathic Doctors Act."

        Doctors of osteopathy (DOs) are physicians and surgeons who are  
        fully trained and licensed to prescribe medication and to perform  
        surgery.  DOs are often equated with doctors of medicine (MDs), but  
        with a philosophical treatment difference that assesses the overall  
        health of their patients, including home and work environments.  DOs  
        must have a bachelor's degree and complete four years of medical  


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        OMBC was initially established as the Board of Osteopathic Examiners  
        by initiative statute in 1922.  That initiative established  
        regulation by an entity separate from the Medical Board of  
        California (MBC) because of a perception of discrimination against  
        DOs by the predecessor to the MBC.  

        Prior to 2002, OMBC was an independent, free-standing board.  In  
        2002, OMBC was brought within the Department of Consumer Affairs  
        (DCA) by SB 26 (Figueroa), Chapter 615, Statutes of 2002.

        Naturopathic medicine is a licensed health care profession based on  
        the belief that the human body has an innate healing ability.   
        Naturopathic doctors (NDs) teach their patients to use diet,  
        exercise, lifestyle changes and natural therapies to enhance their  
        bodies' ability to ward off and combat disease.  NDs must graduate  
        from a school accredited by the Council of Naturopathic Medical  
        Education and complete at least 4,100 hours of training, of which  
        not less than 2,500 hours are academic training and not less than  
        1,200 hours are supervised clinical training.  ND license candidates  
        must also pass a licensing exam that is administered by the North  
        American Board of Naturopathic Examiners.  

        The Bureau of Naturopathic Medicine (Bureau) and the Naturopathic  
        Doctors Act became operative on July 1, 2004 (SB 907 [Burton],  
        Chapter 485, Statutes of 2003).  As originally established the  
        Bureau was placed under the authority of the Director of the DCA,  
        who appointed the Bureau chief.  The Director was also responsible  
        for establishing an advisory council to the Bureau consisting of  
        three California licensed NDs, three California licensed physicians  
        and surgeons, and three public members.

        As part of the July 2009 Budget package, ABX4 20 [(Strickland),  
        Chapter 18, Statutes of 2009 - 10 Fourth Extraordinary Session]  
        changed the structure and the composition of the OMBC by combining  
        it with the Bureau.  OMBC is composed of nine members:  five DOs,  
        two public members, and two naturopathic doctors.   The bill also  
        created the Committee under the auspices of OMBC.

         Analysis Prepared by  :    Sarah Weaver / B.,P. & C.P. / (916)  


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