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2018 Legislation

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Summaries of the enrolled bills from the 2018 legislative session that affect Florida's health care professions. Click on hyperlinks to view a brief summary, effective date and a link to the final enrolled text.

House Bills

  • 21 Controlled Substances
  • 29 Military and Veterans Affairs
  • 351 Prescription Drug Pricing Transparency
  • 429 Donation and Transfer of Human Tissue
  • 513 Distributing Pharmaceutical Drugs and Devices
  • 675 Pharmacies
  • 1337 Nursing
  • 7059 Optometry

Controlled Substances
Effective Date: July 1, 2018
House Bill 21 (Full Text)


Creates section 456.0301, Florida Statutes, requiring practitioners to complete a specified board-approved continuing education course to prescribe controlled substances. The bill defines "acute pain" and establishes prescribing guidelines and grounds for disciplinary action if not followed. It limits opioid prescriptions for the treatment of acute pain to a specified period under certain circumstances and requires health care practitioners to check the prescription drug monitoring program (PDMP) database prior to prescribing or dispensing a controlled substance.

Additionally, the bill requires pain management clinics with an exemption from registration under section 458.3265 or 459.0137, Florida Statutes, to register their exemption with the Department of Health with no fee, and specifies a new certificate is required if a change of address occurs.

Military and Veterans Affairs
Effective Date: July 1, 2018
House Bill 29 (Full Text)


Cited as the Don Hahnfeldt Veteran and Military Family Opportunity Act. Amends section 456.024, Florida Statutes, revising expedited licensure requirements for active duty military spouses to practice dentistry and eliminates the supervision level requirement for a temporary professional license for dentistry.

Authorizes licensing boards to recognize certain military-issued credentials earned by active duty military members and their spouses for purposes of issuing a license in a health care profession, and designates March 25th of each year as "Medal of Honor Day."

Prescription Drug Pricing Transparency
Effective Date: July 1, 2018
House Bill 351 (Full Text)


Amends section 465.0244, Florida Statutes, providing requirements for pharmacists to inform customers of certain generically equivalent drug products and whether cost sharing obligations to such customers exceed the retail price of a prescription. Creates sections 624.490, 627.64741, 627.6572 and 641.314, Florida Statutes, establishing definitions, registration and duties involving prescription benefit managers and associated contracts. Repeals section 465.1862, Florida Statutes, regarding pharmacy benefits manager contracts.

Donation and Transfer of Human Tissue
Effective Date: July 1, 2018
House Bill 429 (Full Text)


Amends section 381.0421(12), Florida Statutes, to require the Department of Health to develop and publish on its website an educational pamphlet relating to certain tissue transplants. It also requires the educational pamphlet to include specified information relating to risks and benefits of human cells, tissue, and cellular and tissue-based product transplants.

Distributing Pharmaceutical Drugs and Devices
Effective Date: July 1, 2018
House Bill 513 (Full Text)


Revises an exception to pharmacy regulations (Chapter 465, Florida Statutes) for certain manufacturers and distributers of dialysis drugs or supplies.

Effective Date: July 1, 2018
House Bill 675 (Full Text)


Expands the eligibility for a membership seat on the Board of Pharmacy. Establishes and provides requirements for Class III institutional pharmacies and adds these pharmacies to those authorized to dispense prepackaged drug products.

Effective Date: October 1, 2018
House Bill 1337 (Full Text)


Amends the title of an Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner (ARNP) to Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) and makes conforming changes throughout the Florida Statutes. APRNs would be licensed instead of certified. Changes the title of a Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS) to an APRN.

Effective Date: October 1, 2018
House Bill 7059 (Full Text)


Amends section 463.006, Florida Statutes, to require the Department to license an applicant for licensure and certification as an optometrist when the applicant meets specified requirements, and creates language relative to the time-period a national examination score can be accepted. Repeals language relating to the content of the licensure examination.

Senate Bills

  • 510 Reporting of Adverse Incidents in Planned Out-of-Hospital Births
  • 622 Health Care Facility Regulation

Reporting of Adverse Incidents in Planned Out-of-Hospital Births
Effective Date: Upon becoming law
Senate Bill 510 (Full Text)


Creates section 456.0495, Florida Statutes, which requires physicians, osteopathic physicians, nurse midwives, and licensed midwives who attended an attempted or completed non-hospital birth to report certain adverse incidents to the Department of Health (DOH). DOH is required to review the incident report and determine if the incident involves conduct that is subject to disciplinary action; then, if disciplinary action is necessary, DOH must refer the matter to the appropriate board, or to the department if there is no regulatory board. Requires the Department to adopt rules implementing this section and develop a form for reporting adverse incidents.

Health Care Facility Regulation
Effective Date: July 1, 2018
Senate Bill 622 (Full Text)


Amends section 456.054, Florida Statutes, which provides that a designated facility owned or operated by a public health trust and located within the boundaries of a municipality is under the exclusive jurisdiction of the county creating the public health trust. Eliminates state licensure requirements for clinical laboratories, and requires a birth center to be federally certified and to meet specified requirements to perform certain laboratory tests.