How to buy cheap seroquel

How to cite this how to buy cheap seroquel article:Singh OP. The National Commission for Allied and Healthcare Professions Act, 2020 and its implication for mental health. Indian J Psychiatry 2021;63:119-20The National Commission for Allied and Healthcare Professions Act, 2020 has been notified on March 28, 2021, by the how to buy cheap seroquel Gazette of India published by the Ministry of Law and Justice.

This bill aims to “provide for regulation and maintenance of standards of education and services by allied and healthcare professionals, assessment of institutions, maintenance of a Central Register and State Register and creation of a system to improve access, research and development and adoption of latest scientific advancement and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.”[1]This act has created a category of Health Care Professionals which is defined as. €œhealthcare professional” includes a scientist, therapist, or other professional who studies, advises, researches, supervises or provides preventive, curative, rehabilitative, therapeutic or promotional health services and who has obtained any qualification of degree under this Act, the duration of which shall not be <3600 h spread over a period of 3 years to 6 years divided into specific semesters.[1]According to the act, “Allied health professional” includes an associate, technician, or technologist who is trained to perform any technical and practical task to support diagnosis and treatment of illness, disease, injury or impairment, and to support implementation of any healthcare treatment and referral plan recommended by a medical, nursing, or any other healthcare professional, and who has obtained any qualification of diploma or degree under this Act, the duration of which shall not be less than 2000 h spread over a period of 2 years to 4 years divided into specific semesters.”[1]It is noticeable that while how to buy cheap seroquel the term “Health Care Professionals” does not include doctors who are registered under National Medical Council, Mental Health Care Act (MHCA), 2017 includes psychiatrists under the ambit of Mental Health Care Professionals.[2] This discrepancy needs to be corrected - psychiasts, being another group of medical specialists, should be kept out of the broad umbrella of “Mental Healthcare Professionals.”The category of Behavioural Health Sciences Professional has been included and defined as “a person who undertakes scientific study of the emotions, behaviours and biology relating to a person's mental well-being, their ability to function in everyday life and their concept of self. €œBehavioural health” is the preferred term to “mental health” and includes professionals such as counselors, analysts, psychologists, educators and support workers, who provide counseling, therapy, and mediation services to individuals, families, groups, and communities in response to social and personal difficulties.”[1]This is a welcome step to the extent that it creates a diverse category of trained workforce in the field of Mental Health (Behavioural Health Science Professionals) and tries to regulate their training although it mainly aims to promote mental wellbeing.

However there is how to buy cheap seroquel a huge lacuna in the term of “Mental Illness” as defined by MHCA, 2017. Only severe disorders are included as per definition and there is no clarity regarding inclusion of other psychiatric disorders, namely “common mental disorders” such as anxiety and depression. This leaves a strong possibility of concept of “psychiatric illnesses” being limited to only “severe psychiatric disorders” (major how to buy cheap seroquel psychoses) thus perpetuating the stigma and alienation associated with psychiatric patients for centuries.

Psychiatrists being restricted to treating severe mental disorders as per MHCA, 2017, there is a strong possibility that the care of common mental disorders may gradually pass on under the care of “behavioural health professionals” as per the new act!. There is need to look into this aspect by the leadership in psychiatry, both organizational and academic psychiatry, and reduce the contradictions how to buy cheap seroquel between the MHCA, 2017 and this nascent act. All disorders classified in ICD 10 and DSM 5 should be classified as “Psychiatric Disorders” or “Mental Illness.” This will not only help in fighting the stigma associated with psychiatric illnesses but also promote the integration of psychiatry with other specialties.

References 1.The National Commission for Allied and how to buy cheap seroquel Healthcare Professions Act, 2021. The Gazette of India. Published by Ministry of Law and how to buy cheap seroquel Justice.

28 March, 2021. 2.The how to buy cheap seroquel Mental Healthcare Act, 2017. The Gazette of India.

Published by Ministry of Law how to buy cheap seroquel and Justice. April 7, 2017. Correspondence Address:Om Prakash SinghAA 304, Ashabari Apartments, O/31, Baishnabghata, Patuli Township, Kolkata - 700 how to buy cheap seroquel 094, West Bengal IndiaSource of Support.

None, Conflict of Interest. NoneDOI. 10.4103/indianjpsychiatry.indianjpsychiatry_268_21Abstract Thiamine is essential how to buy cheap seroquel for the activity of several enzymes associated with energy metabolism in humans.

Chronic alcohol use is associated with deficiency of thiamine along with other vitamins through several mechanisms. Several neuropsychiatric syndromes have been associated with thiamine deficiency in the context of alcohol use disorder including Wernicke–Korsakoff syndrome, alcoholic cerebellar syndrome, alcoholic how to buy cheap seroquel peripheral neuropathy, and possibly, Marchiafava–Bignami syndrome. High-dose thiamine replacement is suggested for these neuropsychiatric syndromes.Keywords.

Alcohol use disorder, alcoholic cerebellar syndrome, alcoholic peripheral neuropathy, Marchiafava–Bignami syndrome, thiamine, Wernicke–Korsakoff how to buy cheap seroquel syndromeHow to cite this article:Praharaj SK, Munoli RN, Shenoy S, Udupa ST, Thomas LS. High-dose thiamine strategy in Wernicke–Korsakoff syndrome and related thiamine deficiency conditions associated with alcohol use disorder. Indian J Psychiatry 2021;63:121-6How to cite this URL:Praharaj SK, Munoli RN, Shenoy S, how to buy cheap seroquel Udupa ST, Thomas LS.

High-dose thiamine strategy in Wernicke–Korsakoff syndrome and related thiamine deficiency conditions associated with alcohol use disorder. Indian J Psychiatry [serial online] 2021 [cited 2021 Jun how to buy cheap seroquel 15];63:121-6. Available from.

Https://www.indianjpsychiatry.org/text.asp?. 2021/63/2/121/313716 Introduction Thiamine is a water-soluble vitamin (B1) that plays a key role in the activity of several enzymes associated with energy metabolism. Thiamine pyrophosphate (or diphosphate) is the active form that acts as a cofactor for enzymes.

The daily dietary requirement of thiamine in adults is 1–2 mg and is dependent on carbohydrate intake.[1],[2] The requirement increases if basal metabolic rate is higher, for example, during alcohol withdrawal state. Dietary sources include pork (being the major source), meat, legume, vegetables, and enriched foods. The body can store between 30 and 50 mg of thiamine and is likely to get depleted within 4–6 weeks if the diet is deficient.[2] In those with alcohol-related liver damage, the ability to store thiamine is gradually reduced.[1],[2]Lower thiamine levels are found in 30%–80% of chronic alcohol users.[3] Thiamine deficiency occurs due to poor intake of vitamin-rich foods, impaired intestinal absorption, decreased storage capacity of liver, damage to the renal epithelial cells due to alcohol, leading to increased loss from the kidneys, and excessive loss associated with medical conditions.[2],[3] Furthermore, alcohol decreases the absorption of colonic bacterial thiamine, reduces the enzymatic activity of thiamine pyrophosphokinase, and thereby, reducing the amount of available thiamine pyrophosphate.[4] Since facilitated diffusion of thiamine into cells is dependent on a concentration gradient, reduced thiamine pyrophosphokinase activity further reduces thiamine uptake into cells.[4] Impaired utilization of thiamine is seen in certain conditions (e.g., hypomagnesemia) which are common in alcohol use disorder.[2],[3],[4] This narrative review discusses the neuropsychiatric syndromes associated with thiamine deficiency in the context of alcohol use disorder, and the treatment regimens advocated for these conditions.

A PubMed search supplemented with manual search was used to identify neuropsychiatric syndromes related to thiamine deficiency in alcohol use disorder patients. Neuropsychiatric Syndromes Associated With Thiamine Deficiency Wernicke–Korsakoff syndromeWernicke encephalopathy is associated with chronic alcohol use, and if not identified and treated early, could lead to permanent brain damage characterized by an amnestic syndrome known as Korsakoff syndrome. Inappropriate treatment of Wernicke encephalopathy with lower doses of thiamine can lead to high mortality rates (~20%) and Korsakoff syndrome in ~ 80% of patients (ranges from 56% to 84%).[5],[6] The classic triad of Wernicke includes oculomotor abnormalities, cerebellar dysfunction, and confusion.

Wernicke lesions are found in 12.5% of brain samples of patients with alcohol dependence.[7] However, only 20%–30% of them had a clinical diagnosis of Wernicke encephalopathy antemortem. It has been found that many patients develop Wernicke–Korsakoff syndrome (WKS) following repeated subclinical episodes of thiamine deficiency.[7] In an autopsy report of 97 chronic alcohol users, only16% had all the three “classical signs,” 29% had two signs, 37% presented with one sign, and 19% had none.[8] Mental status changes are the most prevalent sign (seen in 82% of the cases), followed by eye signs (in 29%) and ataxia (23%).[8] WKS should be suspected in persons with a history of alcohol use and presenting with signs of ophthalmoplegia, ataxia, acute confusion, memory disturbance, unexplained hypotension, hypothermia, coma, or unconsciousness.[9] Operational criteria for the diagnosis of Wernicke encephalopathy have been proposed by Caine et al.[10] that requires two out of four features, i.e., (a) dietary deficiency (signs such as cheilitis, glossitis, and bleeding gums), (b) oculomotor abnormalities (nystagmus, opthalmoplegia, and diplopia), (c) cerebellar dysfunction (gait ataxia, nystagmus), and (d) either altered mental state (confusion) or mild memory impairment.As it is very difficult to clinically distinguish Wernicke encephalopathy from other associated conditions such as delirium tremens, hepatic encephalopathy, or head injury, it is prudent to have a lower threshold to diagnose this if any of the clinical signs is seen. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) brain scan during Wernicke encephalopathy shows mammillary body atrophy and enlarged third ventricle, lesions in the medial portions of thalami and mid brain and can be used to aid diagnosis.[11],[12] However, most clinical situations warrant treatment without waiting for neuroimaging report.

The treatment suggestions in the guidelines vary widely. Furthermore, hardly any evidence-based recommendations exist on a more general use of thiamine as a preventative intervention in individuals with alcohol use disorder.[13] There are very few studies that have evaluated the dose and duration of thiamine for WKS, but higher doses may result in a greater response.[6],[14] With thiamine administration rapid improvement is seen in eye movement abnormalities (improve within days or weeks) and ataxia (may take months to recover), but the effects on memory, in particular, are unclear.[4],[14] Severe memory impairment is the core feature of Korsakoff syndrome. Initial stages of the disease can present with confabulation, executive dysfunction, flattened affect, apathy, and poor insight.[15] Both the episodic and semantic memory are affected, whereas, procedural memory remains intact.[15]Thomson et al.[6] suggested the following should be treated with thiamine as they are at high risk for developing WKS.

(1) all patients with any evidence of chronic alcohol misuse and any of the following. Acute confusion, decreased conscious level, ataxia, ophthalmoplegia, memory disturbance, and hypothermia with hypotension. (2) patients with delirium tremens may often also have Wernicke encephalopathy, therefore, all of these patients should be presumed to have Wernicke encephalopathy and treated, preferably as inpatients.

And (3) all hypoglycemic patients (who are treated with intravenous glucose) with evidence of chronic alcohol ingestion must be given intravenous thiamine immediately because of the risk of acutely precipitating Wernicke encephalopathy.Alcoholic cerebellar syndromeChronic alcohol use is associated with the degeneration of anterior superior vermis, leading to a clinical syndrome characterized by the subacute or chronic onset of gait ataxia and incoordination in legs, with relative sparing of upper limbs, speech, and oculomotor movements.[16] In severe cases, truncal ataxia, mild dysarthria, and incoordination of the upper limb is also found along with gait ataxia. Thiamine deficiency is considered to be the etiological factor,[17],[18] although direct toxic effects of alcohol may also contribute to this syndrome. One-third of patients with chronic use of alcohol have evidence of alcoholic cerebellar degeneration.

However, population-based studies estimate prevalence to be 14.6%.[19] The effect of alcohol on the cerebellum is graded with the most severe deficits occurring in alcohol users with the longest duration and highest severity of use. The diagnosis of cerebellar degeneration is largely clinical. MRI can be used to evaluate for vermian atrophy but is unnecessary.[20] Anterior portions of vermis are affected early, with involvement of posterior vermis and adjacent lateral hemispheres occurring late in the course could be used to differentiate alcoholic cerebellar degeneration from other conditions that cause more diffuse involvement.[21] The severity of cerebellar syndrome is more in the presence of WKS, thus could be related to thiamine deficiency.[22],[23] Therefore, this has been considered as a cerebellar presentation of WKS and should be treated in a similar way.[16] There are anecdotal evidence to suggest improvement in cerebellar syndrome with high-dose thiamine.[24]Alcoholic peripheral neuropathyPeripheral neuropathy is common in alcohol use disorder and is seen in 44% of the users.[25] It has been associated predominantly with thiamine deficiency.

However, deficiency of other B vitamins (pyridoxine and cobalamin) and direct toxic effect of alcohol is also implicated.[26] Clinically, onset of symptoms is gradual with the involvement of both sensory and motor fibers and occasionally autonomic fibers. Neuropathy can affect both small and large peripheral nerve fibers, leading to different clinical manifestations. Thiamine deficiency-related neuropathy affects larger fiber types, which results in motor deficits and sensory ataxia.

On examination, large fiber involvement is manifested by distal limb muscle weakness and loss of proprioception and vibratory sensation. Together, these can contribute to the gait unsteadiness seen in chronic alcohol users by creating a superimposed steppage gait and reduced proprioceptive input back to the movement control loops in the central nervous system. The most common presentations include painful sensations in both lower limbs, sometimes with burning sensation or numbness, which are early symptoms.

Typically, there is a loss of vibration sensation in distal lower limbs. Later symptoms include loss of proprioception, gait disturbance, and loss of reflexes. Most advanced findings include weakness and muscle atrophy.[20] Progression is very gradual over months and involvement of upper limbs may occur late in the course.

Diagnosis begins with laboratory evaluation to exclude other causes of distal, sensorimotor neuropathy including hemoglobin A1c, liver function tests, and complete blood count to evaluate for red blood cell macrocytosis. Cerebrospinal fluid studies may show increased protein levels but should otherwise be normal in cases of alcohol neuropathy and are not recommended in routine evaluation. Electromyography and nerve conduction studies can be used to distinguish whether the neuropathy is axonal or demyelinating and whether it is motor, sensory, or mixed type.

Alcoholic neuropathy shows reduced distal, sensory amplitudes, and to a lesser extent, reduced motor amplitudes on nerve conduction studies.[20] Abstinence and vitamin supplementation including thiamine are the treatments advocated for this condition.[25] In mild-to-moderate cases, near-complete improvement can be achieved.[20] Randomized controlled trials have showed a significant improvement in alcoholic polyneuropathy with thiamine treatment.[27],[28]Marchiafava–Bignami syndromeThis is a rare but fatal condition seen in chronic alcohol users that is characterized by progressive demyelination and necrosis of the corpus callosum. The association of this syndrome with thiamine deficiency is not very clear, and direct toxic effects of alcohol are also suggested.[29] The clinical syndrome is variable and presentation can be acute, subacute, or chronic. In acute forms, it is predominantly characterized by the altered mental state such as delirium, stupor, or coma.[30] Other clinical features in neuroimaging confirmed Marchiafava–Bignami syndrome (MBS) cases include impaired gait, dysarthria, mutism, signs of split-brain syndrome, pyramidal tract signs, primitive reflexes, rigidity, incontinence, gaze palsy, diplopia, and sensory symptoms.[30] Neuropsychiatric manifestations are common and include psychotic symptoms, depression, apathy, aggressive behavior, and sometimes dementia.[29] MRI scan shows lesions of the corpus callosum, particularly splenium.

Treatment for this condition is mostly supportive and use of nutritional supplements and steroids. However, there are several reports of improvement of this syndrome with thiamine at variable doses including reports of beneficial effects with high-dose strategy.[29],[30],[31] Early initiation of thiamine, preferably within 2 weeks of the onset of symptoms is associated with a better outcome. Therefore, high-dose thiamine should be administered to all suspected cases of MBS.

Laboratory Diagnosis of Thiamine Deficiency Estimation of thiamine and thiamine pyrophosphate levels may confirm the diagnosis of deficiency. Levels of thiamine in the blood are not reliable indicators of thiamine status. Low erythrocyte transketolase activity is also helpful.[32],[33] Transketolase concentrations of <120 nmol/L have also been used to indicate deficiency, while concentrations of 120–150 nmol/L suggest marginal thiamine status.[1] However, these tests are not routinely performed as it is time consuming, expensive, and may not be readily available.[34] The ETKA assay is a functional test rather than a direct measurement of thiamin status and therefore may be influenced by factors other than thiamine deficiency such as diabetes mellitus and polyneuritis.[1] Hence, treatment should be initiated in the absence of laboratory confirmation of thiamine deficiency.

Furthermore, treatment should not be delayed if tests are ordered, but the results are awaited. Electroencephalographic abnormalities in thiamine deficiency states range from diffuse mild-to-moderate slow waves and are not a good diagnostic option, as the prevalence of abnormalities among patients is inconsistent.[35]Surrogate markers, which reflect chronic alcohol use and nutritional deficiency other than thiamine, may be helpful in identifying at-risk patients. This includes gamma glutamate transferase, aspartate aminotransferase.

Alanine transaminase ratio >2:1, and increased mean corpuscular volume.[36] They are useful when a reliable history of alcohol use is not readily available, specifically in emergency departments when treatment needs to be started immediately to avoid long-term consequences. Thiamine Replacement Therapy Oral versus parenteral thiamineIntestinal absorption of thiamine depends on active transport through thiamine transporter 1 and 2, which follow saturation kinetics.[1] Therefore, the rate and amount of absorption of thiamine in healthy individuals is limited. In healthy volunteers, a 10 mg dose results in maximal absorption of thiamine, and any doses higher than this do not increase thiamine levels.

Therefore, the maximum amount of thiamine absorbed from 10 mg or higher dose is between 4.3 and 5.6 mg.[37] However, it has been suggested that, although thiamine transport occurs through the energy-requiring, sodium-dependent active process at physiologic concentrations, at higher supraphysiologic concentrations thiamine uptake is mostly a passive process.[38] Smithline et al. Have demonstrated that it is possible to achieve higher serum thiamine levels with oral doses up to 1500 mg.[39]In chronic alcohol users, intestinal absorption is impaired. Hence, absorption rates are expected to be much lower.

It is approximately 30% of that seen in healthy individuals, i.e., 1.5 mg of thiamine is absorbed from 10 mg oral thiamine.[3] In those consuming alcohol and have poor nutrition, not more than 0.8 mg of thiamine is absorbed.[2],[3],[6] The daily thiamine requirement is 1–1.6 mg/day, which may be more in alcohol-dependent patients at risk for Wernicke encephalopathy.[1] It is highly likely that oral supplementation with thiamine will be inadequate in alcohol-dependent individuals who continue to drink. Therefore, parenteral thiamine is preferred for supplementation in deficiency states associated with chronic alcohol use. Therapy involving parenteral thiamine is considered safe except for occasional circumstances of allergic reactions involving pruritus and local irritation.There is a small, but definite risk of anaphylaxis with parenteral thiamine, specifically with intravenous administration (1/250,000 intravenous injections).[40] Diluting thiamine in 50–100 mg normal saline for infusion may reduce the risk.

However, parenteral thiamine should always be administered under observation with the necessary facilities for resuscitation.A further important issue involves the timing of administration of thiamine relative to the course of alcohol abuse or dependence. Administration of thiamine treatment to patients experiencing alcohol withdrawal may also be influenced by other factors such as magnesium depletion, N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor upregulation, or liver impairment, all of which may alter thiamine metabolism and utilization.[6],[14]Thiamine or other preparations (e.g., benfotiamine)The thiamine transporters limit the rate of absorption of orally administered thiamine. Allithiamines (e.g., benfotiamine) are the lipid-soluble thiamine derivatives that are absorbed better, result in higher thiamine levels, and are retained longer in the body.[41] The thiamine levels with orally administered benfotiamine are much higher than oral thiamine and almost equals to intravenous thiamine given at the same dosage.[42]Benfotiamine has other beneficial effects including inhibition of production of advanced glycation end products, thus protecting against diabetic vascular complications.[41] It also modulates nuclear transcription factor κB (NK-κB), vascular endothelial growth factor receptor 2, glycogen synthase kinase 3 β, etc., that play a role in cell repair and survival.[41] Benfotiamine has been found to be effective for the treatment of alcoholic peripheral neuropathy.[27]Dosing of thiamineAs the prevalence of thiamine deficiency is very common in chronic alcohol users, the requirement of thiamine increases in active drinkers and it is difficult to rapidly determine thiamine levels using laboratory tests, it is prudent that all patients irrespective of nutritional status should be administered parenteral thiamine.

The dose should be 100 mg thiamine daily for 3–5 days during inpatient treatment. Commonly, multivitamin injections are added to intravenous infusions. Patients at risk for thiamine deficiency should receive 250 mg of thiamine daily intramuscularly for 3–5 days, followed by oral thiamine 100 mg daily.[6]Thiamine plasma levels reduce to 20% of peak value after approximately 2 h of parenteral administration, thus reducing the effective “window period” for passive diffusion to the central nervous system.[6] Therefore, in thiamine deficient individuals with features of Wernicke encephalopathy should receive thiamine thrice daily.High-dose parenteral thiamine administered thrice daily has been advocated in patients at risk for Wernicke encephalopathy.[43] The Royal College of Physicians guideline recommends that patients with suspected Wernicke encephalopathy should receive 500 mg thiamine diluted in 50–100 ml of normal saline infusion over 30 min three times daily for 2–3 days and sometimes for longer periods.[13] If there are persistent symptoms such as confusion, cerebellar symptoms, or memory impairment, this regimen can be continued until the symptoms improve.

If symptoms improve, oral thiamine 100 mg thrice daily can be continued for prolonged periods.[6],[40] A similar treatment regimen is advocated for alcoholic cerebellar degeneration as well. Doses more than 500 mg intramuscular or intravenous three times a day for 3–5 days, followed by 250 mg once daily for a further 3–5 days is also recommended by some guidelines (e.g., British Association for Psychopharmacology).[44]Other effects of thiamineThere are some data to suggest that thiamine deficiency can modulate alcohol consumption and may result in pathological drinking. Benfotiamine 600 mg/day as compared to placebo for 6 months was well tolerated and found to decrease psychiatric distress in males and reduce alcohol consumption in females with severe alcohol dependence.[45],[46] Other Factors During Thiamine Therapy Correction of hypomagnesemiaMagnesium is a cofactor for many thiamine-dependent enzymes in carbohydrate metabolism.

Patients may fail to respond to thiamine supplementation in the presence of hypomagnesemia.[47] Magnesium deficiency is common in chronic alcohol users and is seen in 30% of individuals.[48],[49] It can occur because of increased renal excretion of magnesium, poor intake, decreased absorption because of Vitamin D deficiency, the formation of undissociated magnesium soaps with free fatty acids.[48],[49]The usual adult dose is 35–50 mmol of magnesium sulfate added to 1 L isotonic (saline) given over 12–24 h.[6] The dose has to be titrated against plasma magnesium levels. It is recommended to reduce the dose in renal failure. Contraindications include patients with documented hypersensitivity and those with heart block, Addison's disease, myocardial damage, severe hepatitis, or hypophosphatemia.

Do not administer intravenous magnesium unless hypomagnesemia is confirmed.[6]Other B-complex vitaminsMost patients with deficiency of thiamine will also have reduced levels of other B vitamins including niacin, pyridoxine, and cobalamin that require replenishment. For patients admitted to the intensive care unit with symptoms that may mimic or mask Wernicke encephalopathy, based on the published literature, routine supplementation during the 1st day of admission includes 200–500 mg intravenous thiamine every 8 h, 64 mg/kg magnesium sulfate (≈4–5 g for most adult patients), and 400–1000 μg intravenous folate.[50] If alcoholic ketoacidosis is suspected, dextrose-containing fluids are recommended over normal saline.[50] Precautions to be Taken When Administering Parenteral Thiamine It is recommended to monitor for anaphylaxis and has appropriate facilities for resuscitation and for treating anaphylaxis readily available including adrenaline and corticosteroids. Anaphylaxis has been reported at the rate of approximately 4/1 million pairs of ampoules of Pabrinex (a pair of high potency vitamins available in the UK containing 500 mg of thiamine (1:250,000 I/V administrations).[40] Intramuscular thiamine is reported to have a lower incidence of anaphylactic reactions than intravenous administration.[40] The reaction has been attributed to nonspecific histamine release.[51] Administer intravenous thiamine slowly, preferably by slow infusion in 100 ml normal saline over 15–30 min.

Conclusions Risk factors for thiamine deficiency should be assessed in chronic alcohol users. A high index of suspicion and a lower threshold to diagnose thiamine deficiency states including Wernicke encephalopathy is needed. Several other presentations such as cerebellar syndrome, MBS, polyneuropathy, and delirium tremens could be related to thiamine deficiency and should be treated with protocols similar to Wernicke encephalopathy.

High-dose thiamine is recommended for the treatment of suspected Wernicke encephalopathy and related conditions [Figure 1]. However, evidence in terms of randomized controlled trials is lacking, and the recommendations are based on small studies and anecdotal reports. Nevertheless, as all these conditions respond to thiamine supplementation, it is possible that these have overlapping pathophysiology and are better considered as Wernicke encephalopathy spectrum disorders.Figure 1.

Thiamine recommendations for patients with alcohol use disorder. AHistory of alcohol use, but no clinical features of WE. BNo clinical features of WE, but with risk factors such as complicated withdrawal (delirium, seizures).

CClinical features of WE (ataxia, opthalmoplegia, global confusion)Click here to viewFinancial support and sponsorshipNil.Conflicts of interestThere are no conflicts of interest. References 1.Frank LL. Thiamin in clinical practice.

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37.Thomson AD, Leevy CM. Observations on the mechanism of thiamine hydrochloride absorption in man. Clin Sci 1972;43:153-63.

38.Hoyumpa AM Jr., Strickland R, Sheehan JJ, Yarborough G, Nichols S. Dual system of intestinal thiamine transport in humans. J Lab Clin Med 1982;99:701-8.

39.Smithline HA, Donnino M, Greenblatt DJ. Pharmacokinetics of high-dose oral thiamine hydrochloride in healthy subjects. BMC Clin Pharmacol 2012;12:4.

40.Latt N, Dore G. Thiamine in the treatment of Wernicke encephalopathy in patients with alcohol use disorders. Intern Med J 2014;44:911-5.

41.Raj V, Ojha S, Howarth FC, Belur PD, Subramanya SB. Therapeutic potential of benfotiamine and its molecular targets. Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci 2018;22:3261-73.

42.Xie F, Cheng Z, Li S, Liu X, Guo X, Yu P, et al. Pharmacokinetic study of benfotiamine and the bioavailability assessment compared to thiamine hydrochloride. J Clin Pharmacol 2014;54:688-95.

43.Cook CC, Hallwood PM, Thomson AD. B Vitamin deficiency and neuropsychiatric syndromes in alcohol misuse. Alcohol Alcohol 1998;33:317-36.

44.Lingford-Hughes AR, Welch S, Peters L, Nutt DJ, British Association for Psychopharmacology, Expert Reviewers Group. BAP updated guidelines. Evidence-based guidelines for the pharmacological management of substance abuse, harmful use, addiction and comorbidity.

Recommendations from BAP. J Psychopharmacol 2012;26:899-952. 45.Manzardo AM, He J, Poje A, Penick EC, Campbell J, Butler MG.

Double-blind, randomized placebo-controlled clinical trial of benfotiamine for severe alcohol dependence. Drug Alcohol Depend 2013;133:562-70. 46.Manzardo AM, Pendleton T, Poje A, Penick EC, Butler MG.

Change in psychiatric symptomatology after benfotiamine treatment in males is related to lifetime alcoholism severity. Drug Alcohol Depend 2015;152:257-63. 47.Dingwall KM, Delima JF, Gent D, Batey RG.

Hypomagnesaemia and its potential impact on thiamine utilisation in patients with alcohol misuse at the Alice Springs Hospital. Drug Alcohol Rev 2015;34:323-8. 48.Flink EB.

Magnesium deficiency in alcoholism. Alcohol Clin Exp Res 1986;10:590-4. 49.Grochowski C, Blicharska E, Baj J, Mierzwińska A, Brzozowska K, Forma A, et al.

Serum iron, magnesium, copper, and manganese levels in alcoholism. A systematic review. Molecules 2019;24:E1361.

50.Flannery AH, Adkins DA, Cook AM. Unpeeling the evidence for the banana bag. Evidence-based recommendations for the management of alcohol-associated vitamin and electrolyte deficiencies in the ICU.

Crit Care Med 2016;44:1545-52. 51.Lagunoff D, Martin TW, Read G. Agents that release histamine from mast cells.

Annu Rev Pharmacol Toxicol 1983;23:331-51. Correspondence Address:Samir Kumar PraharajDepartment of Psychiatry, Kasturba Medical College, Manipal, Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Manipal, Karnataka IndiaSource of Support. None, Conflict of Interest.

NoneDOI. 10.4103/psychiatry.IndianJPsychiatry_440_20 Figures [Figure 1].

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We are social epidemiologists and community advocates focused on addressing seroquel therapeutic class social determinants of health inequities. While we appreciate O’Neill et al’s effort to link multiple provincial-level administrative data sets to examine homicide victimisation by immigration status in Ontario, Canada, we have concerns about the framing and interpretation of findings and their potential impact on immigrants and refugees.1FRAMING AND APPROACHWhile O’Neill et al’s data and sample size are strengths, the attention to the context of being an immigrant to Canada, theoretical framework and motivation for examining immigrants in relation to homicide victimisation are not fully developed. O’Neill et al do not acknowledge having done any community engagement which is critical and ethical2 given the long history of exclusion, exploitation, racism and seroquel therapeutic class discrimination, and the current global climate of increasing criminalisation of migrants. Meaningful community engagement offers important context. Helps shape the research seroquel therapeutic class purpose, questions, approach, interpretation and recommendations.

And can reduce the potential for harm.Though criminalisation of migration under security pretexts is an infringement of international law,3 and contradicts evidence that immigration is related to a reduction in crime,4 many high-income countries, including Canada, are framing harmful immigration policy (eg, restricting entry, detaining immigrants) as an urgent need to protect against threats of safety and security,4 5 disproportionately targeting racialised and Muslim immigrants and refugees. Within this policy context, along with political rhetoric to generate support for it, hate crimes are at record highs in Canada, seroquel therapeutic class with approximately 85% of these crimes motivated by racism and ethnic or religious discrimination.6Not only does this paper fail to consider this context, the statements that immigrant communities are ‘predisposed to violence’ without evidence to support this claim. The conflation of perpetrating and dying by homicide, by alternating between the use of ‘homicide’ and ‘homicide victimisation’. And the suggestion that ‘cultural views on gender’ increase risk of violence and homicide victimisation against immigrant women, are particularly harmful.RESULTS AND INTERPRETATIONThe authors’ emphasis on the increased risk of homicide victimisation of female and male refugees compared to long-term residents is misleading given that these results are not statistically significant. The authors argue that the findings are important regardless of significance, seroquel therapeutic class because of large effect sizes.

But for many researchers, effect sizes of 1.31 and 1.23, respectively, would be considered small to medium and would lead to a much more cautious interpretation.The authors’ interpretation that non-refugee immigrants have a lower risk of homicide victimisation because Canada’s immigration policies select for highly educated and healthy immigrants reflects problems with the theory informing this research, since homicide victimisation is not within the control of an individual. Social epidemiology was founded on the need to theorise political, economic and cultural context over and above individual characteristics.7 A concerning omission is that there is no mention of the potential for hate crimes6 to be at least partially responsible for homicide victimisation seroquel therapeutic class among refugees and immigrants. Additionally, in the text, it is left unclear how a refugee’s history of ‘violence, trauma and torture’ and ‘depression and psychosocial illness’ are linked to homicide victimisation. Such unsupported statements omit essential consideration that Canadian neighbourhoods are heterogeneous combinations of refugees, non-refugees and long-term residents and that violence occurs within a social context which includes racism, xenophobia and Islamophobia.8With the study’s low counts of homicide victimisations among refugees (31 among females and 89 among males over 20 years), 90% of all homicide victimisations seroquel therapeutic class in the same time period occurring among long-term residents (table 1 of paper), and no clear data pointing to specific factors to intervene upon, we argue that this potential in excess homicide victimisation does not warrant targeted homicide prevention strategies, as the authors suggest. Broader prevention strategies targeting the entire population (eg, a national ban on handguns and assault weapons,9 10 implementing Canada’s Anti-Racism Strategy8) may be more beneficial in reducing homicide victimisation.POTENTIAL IMPACTWe are concerned that the paper’s framing, approach and interpretation could negatively impact immigrant and refugee communities targeted by significant racism, anti-immigrant sentiment and Islamophobia at policy, practice, community and individual levels.6 11 Community engagement from the start, and comprehensive multi-level, multistage social determinants of immigrant health framework,11 could have prevented misinterpretations of the findings and this potential for harm.

It could have also shifted the approach from a deficit- to an asset-based one that seroquel therapeutic class recognises the leadership and impacts of women who founded groups such as Mothers for Peace12 and Mending a Crack in the Sky.13 These groups combat the stigmatisation of mothers and families that have lost children to violence. Support mothers and families experiencing ongoing trauma due to violence. And advocate for policy and programme change to reduce poverty, violence and homicide for all people in Canada, a more inclusive public health approach..

We are social epidemiologists and more info here community advocates focused on addressing social determinants of health inequities how to buy cheap seroquel. While we appreciate O’Neill et al’s effort to link multiple provincial-level administrative data sets to examine homicide victimisation by immigration status in Ontario, Canada, we have concerns about the framing and interpretation of findings and their potential impact on immigrants and refugees.1FRAMING AND APPROACHWhile O’Neill et al’s data and sample size are strengths, the attention to the context of being an immigrant to Canada, theoretical framework and motivation for examining immigrants in relation to homicide victimisation are not fully developed. O’Neill et al do not acknowledge having done any community engagement which is critical and ethical2 given the long history of exclusion, exploitation, racism and discrimination, and the current global climate of increasing criminalisation of how to buy cheap seroquel migrants. Meaningful community engagement offers important context.

Helps shape the how to buy cheap seroquel research purpose, questions, approach, interpretation and recommendations. And can reduce the potential for harm.Though criminalisation of migration under security pretexts is an infringement of international law,3 and contradicts evidence that immigration is related to a reduction in crime,4 many high-income countries, including Canada, are framing harmful immigration policy (eg, restricting entry, detaining immigrants) as an urgent need to protect against threats of safety and security,4 5 disproportionately targeting racialised and Muslim immigrants and refugees. Within this policy context, along with political rhetoric to generate support for it, hate crimes are at record highs in Canada, with how to buy cheap seroquel approximately 85% of these crimes motivated by racism and ethnic or religious discrimination.6Not only does this paper fail to consider this context, the statements that immigrant communities are ‘predisposed to violence’ without evidence to support this claim. The conflation of perpetrating and dying by homicide, by alternating between the use of ‘homicide’ and ‘homicide victimisation’.

And the suggestion that ‘cultural views on gender’ increase risk of violence and homicide victimisation against immigrant women, are particularly harmful.RESULTS AND INTERPRETATIONThe authors’ emphasis on the increased risk of homicide victimisation of female and male refugees compared to long-term residents is misleading given that these results are not statistically significant. The authors argue that the findings are important regardless of significance, because of how to buy cheap seroquel large effect sizes. But for many researchers, effect sizes of 1.31 and 1.23, respectively, would be considered small to medium and would lead to a much more cautious interpretation.The authors’ interpretation that non-refugee immigrants have a lower risk of homicide victimisation because Canada’s immigration policies select for highly educated and healthy immigrants reflects problems with the theory informing this research, since homicide victimisation is not within the control of an individual. Social epidemiology was founded on the need to theorise political, economic how to buy cheap seroquel and cultural context over and above individual characteristics.7 A concerning omission is that there is no mention of the potential for hate crimes6 to be at least partially responsible for homicide victimisation among refugees and immigrants.

Additionally, in the text, it is left unclear how a refugee’s history of ‘violence, trauma and torture’ and ‘depression and psychosocial illness’ are linked to homicide victimisation. Such unsupported statements omit essential consideration that Canadian neighbourhoods are heterogeneous combinations of refugees, non-refugees and long-term residents and that violence occurs within a social context which includes racism, xenophobia and Islamophobia.8With the study’s low counts of homicide victimisations among refugees (31 among females and 89 among males over 20 years), 90% of all homicide victimisations in the same time period occurring among long-term residents (table 1 of paper), and how to buy cheap seroquel no clear data pointing to specific factors to intervene upon, we argue that this potential in excess homicide victimisation does not warrant targeted homicide prevention strategies, as the authors suggest. Broader prevention strategies targeting the entire population (eg, a national ban on handguns and assault weapons,9 10 implementing Canada’s Anti-Racism Strategy8) may be more beneficial in reducing homicide victimisation.POTENTIAL IMPACTWe are concerned that the paper’s framing, approach and interpretation could negatively impact immigrant and refugee communities targeted by significant racism, anti-immigrant sentiment and Islamophobia at policy, practice, community and individual levels.6 11 Community engagement from the start, and comprehensive multi-level, multistage social determinants of immigrant health framework,11 could have prevented misinterpretations of the findings and this potential for harm. It could have also shifted the approach from a deficit- to how to buy cheap seroquel an asset-based one that recognises the leadership and impacts of women who founded groups such as Mothers for Peace12 and Mending a Crack in the Sky.13 These groups combat the stigmatisation of mothers and families that have lost children to violence.

Support mothers and families experiencing ongoing trauma due to violence. And advocate for policy and programme change to reduce poverty, violence and homicide for all people in Canada, a more inclusive public health approach..

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All of the attachments with the various levels are posted here seroquel topical gel. NEED TO KNOW PAST MEDICAID INCOME AND RESOURCE LEVELS?. Which household size applies?.

The rules are complicated seroquel topical gel. See rules here. On the HRA Medicaid Levels chart - Boxes 1 and 2 are NON-MAGI Income and Resource levels -- Age 65+, Blind or Disabled and other adults who need to use "spend-down" because they are over the MAGI income levels.

Box 10 on page 3 are the MAGI income levels seroquel topical gel -- The Affordable Care Act changed the rules for Medicaid income eligibility for many BUT NOT ALL New Yorkers. People in the "MAGI" category - those NOT on Medicare -- have expanded eligibility up to 138% of the Federal Poverty Line, so may now qualify for Medicaid even if they were not eligible before, or may now be eligible for Medicaid without a "spend-down." They have NO resource limit. Box 3 on page 1 is Spousal Impoverishment levels for Managed Long Term Care &.

Nursing Homes and Box 8 has the Transfer Penalty rates for nursing home eligibility Box 4 has Medicaid Buy-In for Working People with Disabilities Under Age 65 (still 2017 levels til April 2018) Box 6 are Medicare Savings Program levels (will be updated in April 2018) MAGI INCOME LEVEL of 138% FPL applies to most adults who are not disabled and seroquel topical gel who do not have Medicare, AND can also apply to adults with Medicare if they have a dependent child/relative under age 18 or under 19 if in school. 42 C.F.R. § 435.4.

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What seroquel topical gel is counted as income may not be what you think. For the NON-MAGI Disabled/Aged 65+/Blind, income will still be determined by the same rules as before, explained in this outline and these charts on income disregards. However, for the MAGI population - which is virtually everyone under age 65 who is not on Medicare - their income will now be determined under new rules, based on federal income tax concepts - called "Modifed Adjusted Gross Income" (MAGI).

There are seroquel topical gel good changes and bad changes. GOOD. Veteran's benefits, Workers compensation, and gifts from family or others no longer count as income.

BAD seroquel topical gel. There is no more "spousal" or parental refusal for this population (but there still is for the Disabled/Aged/Blind.) and some other rules. For all of the rules see.

ALSO SEE 2018 Manual on Lump Sums and Impact on Public Benefits - with resource rules The income limits increase with the "household size." In other words, seroquel topical gel the income limit for a family of 5 may be higher than the income limit for a single person. HOWEVER, Medicaid rules about how to calculate the household size are not intuitive or even logical. There are different rules depending on the "category" of the person seeking Medicaid.

Here are the 2 basic categories and the rules for calculating their household size. People who are Disabled, Aged 65+ or seroquel topical gel Blind - "DAB" or "SSI-Related" Category -- NON-MAGI - See this chart for their household size. These same rules apply to the Medicare Savings Program, with some exceptions explained in this article.

Everyone else -- MAGI - All children and adults under age 65, including people with disabilities who are not yet on Medicare -- this is the new "MAGI" population. Their household seroquel topical gel size will be determined using federal income tax rules, which are very complicated. New rule is explained in State's directive 13 ADM-03 - Medicaid Eligibility Changes under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) of 2010 (PDF) pp.

8-10 of the PDF, This PowerPoint by NYLAG on MAGI Budgeting attempts to explain the new MAGI budgeting, including how to determine the Household Size. See slides seroquel topical gel 28-49. Also seeLegal Aid Society and Empire Justice Center materials OLD RULE used until end of 2013 -- Count the person(s) applying for Medicaid who live together, plus any of their legally responsible relatives who do not receive SNA, ADC, or SSI and reside with an applicant/recipient.

Spouses or legally responsible for one another, and parents are legally responsible for their children under age 21 (though if the child is disabled, use the rule in the 1st "DAB" category. Under this seroquel topical gel rule, a child may be excluded from the household if that child's income causes other family members to lose Medicaid eligibility. See 18 NYCRR 360-4.2, MRG p.

573, NYS GIS 2000 MA-007 CAUTION. Different people seroquel topical gel in the same household may be in different "categories" and hence have different household sizes AND Medicaid income and resource limits. If a man is age 67 and has Medicare and his wife is age 62 and not disabled or blind, the husband's household size for Medicaid is determined under Category 1/ Non-MAGI above and his wife's is under Category 2/MAGI.

The following programs were available prior to 2014, but are now discontinued because they are folded into MAGI Medicaid. Prenatal Care Assistance Program (PCAP) was Medicaid for pregnant women and children under age seroquel topical gel 19, with higher income limits for pregnant woman and infants under one year (200% FPL for pregnant women receiving perinatal coverage only not full Medicaid) than for children ages 1-18 (133% FPL). Medicaid for adults between ages 21-65 who are not disabled and without children under 21 in the household.

It was sometimes known as "S/CC" category for Singles and Childless Couples. This category had lower income limits than DAB/ADC-related, but had no asset limits. It did not allow "spend down" of excess income.

This category has now been subsumed under the new MAGI adult group whose limit is now raised to 138% FPL. Family Health Plus - this was an expansion of Medicaid to families with income up to 150% FPL and for childless adults up to 100% FPL. This has now been folded into the new MAGI adult group whose limit is 138% FPL.

For applicants between 138%-150% FPL, they will be eligible for a new program where Medicaid will subsidize their purchase of Qualified Health Plans on the Exchange. PAST INCOME &. RESOURCE LEVELS -- Past Medicaid income and resource levels in NYS are shown on these oldNYC HRA charts for 2001 through 2019, in chronological order.

These include Medicaid levels for MAGI and non-MAGI populations, Child Health Plus, MBI-WPD, Medicare Savings Programs and other public health programs in NYS. This article was authored by the Evelyn Frank Legal Resources Program of New York Legal Assistance Group..

"Undocumented" immigrants are, with some exceptions for pregnant women and Child Health Plus, only eligible for "emergency Medicaid."NYS announced the 2020 Income and Resource levels in GIS 19 MA/12 – 2020 Medicaid Levels and Other Updates ) and levels based on the Federal Poverty Level are in GIS 20 MA/02 – 2020 Federal Poverty Levels Here is the 2020 HRA Income and Resources Level Chart Non-MAGI - 2020 Disabled, 65+ or Blind ("DAB" or SSI-Related) and have how to buy cheap seroquel Medicare MAGI Can you buy cialis over the counter usa (2020) (<. 65, Does not have Medicare)(OR has Medicare and has dependent child <. 18 or <. 19 in school) 138% FPL*** Children how to buy cheap seroquel <. 5 and pregnant women have HIGHER LIMITS than shown ESSENTIAL PLAN For MAGI-eligible people over MAGI income limit up to 200% FPL No long term care.

See info here 1 2 1 2 3 1 2 Income $875 (up from $859 in 201) $1284 (up from $1,267 in 2019) $1,468 $1,983 $2,498 $2,127 $2,873 Resources $15,750 (up from $15,450 in 2019) $23,100 (up from $22,800 in 2019) NO LIMIT** NO LIMIT SOURCE for 2019 figures is GIS 18 MA/015 - 2019 Medicaid Levels and Other Updates (PDF). All of the attachments with the how to buy cheap seroquel various levels are posted here. NEED TO KNOW PAST MEDICAID INCOME AND RESOURCE LEVELS?. Which household size applies?. The rules are how to buy cheap seroquel complicated.

See rules here. On the HRA Medicaid Levels chart - Boxes 1 and 2 are NON-MAGI Income and Resource levels -- Age 65+, Blind or Disabled and other adults who need to use "spend-down" because they are over the MAGI income levels. Box 10 on page 3 are the MAGI income levels -- The Affordable Care Act how to buy cheap seroquel changed the rules for Medicaid income eligibility for many BUT NOT ALL New Yorkers. People in the "MAGI" category - those NOT on Medicare -- have expanded eligibility up to 138% of the Federal Poverty Line, so may now qualify for Medicaid even if they were not eligible before, or may now be eligible for Medicaid without a "spend-down." They have NO resource limit. Box 3 on page 1 is Spousal Impoverishment levels for Managed Long Term Care &.

Nursing Homes and Box 8 has the Transfer Penalty rates for nursing home eligibility Box 4 has Medicaid Buy-In for Working People with Disabilities Under Age 65 (still 2017 levels til April 2018) Box 6 are Medicare Savings Program levels (will be updated in April how to buy cheap seroquel 2018) MAGI INCOME LEVEL of 138% FPL applies to most adults who are not disabled and who do not have Medicare, AND can also apply to adults with Medicare if they have a dependent child/relative under age 18 or under 19 if in school. 42 C.F.R. § 435.4. Certain populations have an even higher income limit - how to buy cheap seroquel 224% FPL for pregnant women and babies <. Age 1, 154% FPL for children age 1 - 19.

CAUTION. What is counted as income may not be what how to buy cheap seroquel you think. For the NON-MAGI Disabled/Aged 65+/Blind, income will still be determined by the same rules as before, explained in this outline and these charts on income disregards. However, for the MAGI population - which is virtually everyone under age 65 who is not on Medicare - their income will now be determined under new rules, based on federal income tax concepts - called "Modifed Adjusted Gross Income" (MAGI). There are good changes how to buy cheap seroquel and bad changes.

GOOD. Veteran's benefits, Workers compensation, and gifts from family or others no longer count as income. BAD how to buy cheap seroquel. There is no more "spousal" or parental refusal for this population (but there still is for the Disabled/Aged/Blind.) and some other rules. For all of the rules see.

ALSO SEE 2018 Manual on Lump Sums and Impact on Public Benefits - with resource rules The income limits increase with the "household size." In other words, the income limit for a family of 5 may be higher than the income limit for a single person. HOWEVER, Medicaid rules about how to calculate the household how to buy cheap seroquel size are not intuitive or even logical. There are different rules depending on the "category" of the person seeking Medicaid. Here are the 2 basic categories and the rules for calculating their household size. People who are how to buy cheap seroquel Disabled, Aged 65+ or Blind - "DAB" or "SSI-Related" Category -- NON-MAGI - See this chart for their household size.

These same rules apply to the Medicare Savings Program, with some exceptions explained in this article. Everyone else -- MAGI - All children and adults under age 65, including people with disabilities who are not yet on Medicare -- this is the new "MAGI" population. Their household size will how to buy cheap seroquel be determined using federal income tax rules, which are very complicated. New rule is explained in State's directive 13 ADM-03 - Medicaid Eligibility Changes under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) of 2010 (PDF) pp. 8-10 of the PDF, This PowerPoint by NYLAG on MAGI Budgeting attempts to explain the new MAGI budgeting, including how to determine the Household Size.

See slides 28-49. Also seeLegal Aid Society and Empire Justice Center materials OLD RULE used until end of 2013 -- Count the person(s) applying for Medicaid who live together, plus any of their legally responsible relatives who do not receive SNA, ADC, or SSI and reside with an applicant/recipient. Spouses or legally responsible for one another, and parents are legally responsible for their children under age 21 (though if the child is disabled, use the rule in the 1st "DAB" category. Under this rule, a child may be excluded from the household if that child's income causes other family members to lose Medicaid eligibility. See 18 NYCRR 360-4.2, MRG p.

573, NYS GIS 2000 MA-007 CAUTION. Different people in the same household may be in different "categories" and hence have different household sizes AND Medicaid income and resource limits. If a man is age 67 and has Medicare and his wife is age 62 and not disabled or blind, the husband's household size for Medicaid is determined under Category 1/ Non-MAGI above and his wife's is under Category 2/MAGI. The following programs were available prior to 2014, but are now discontinued because they are folded into MAGI Medicaid. Prenatal Care Assistance Program (PCAP) was Medicaid for pregnant women and children under age 19, with higher income limits for pregnant woman and infants under one year (200% FPL for pregnant women receiving perinatal coverage only not full Medicaid) than for children ages 1-18 (133% FPL).

Medicaid for adults between ages 21-65 who are not disabled and without children under 21 in the household. It was sometimes known as "S/CC" category for Singles and Childless Couples. This category had lower income limits than DAB/ADC-related, but had no asset limits. It did not allow "spend down" of excess income. This category has now been subsumed under the new MAGI adult group whose limit is now raised to 138% FPL.

Family Health Plus - this was an expansion of Medicaid to families with income up to 150% FPL and for childless adults up to 100% FPL. This has now been folded into the new MAGI adult group whose limit is 138% FPL. For applicants between 138%-150% FPL, they will be eligible for a new program where Medicaid will subsidize their purchase of Qualified Health Plans on the Exchange. PAST INCOME &.

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Research into additional antidepressants how to buy cheap seroquel treatments continues across the country, including at UC Davis Health Read Full Article in Sacramento. Clinical trial participants are needed for UC Davis Health’s latest antidepressant drugs treatment research.The health system launched a Phase 3 clinical trial with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Novavax this week to test another experimental treatment to help address the global seroquel.UC Davis Health plans on enrolling 200-300 participants at its testing clinic site near UC Davis Medical how to buy cheap seroquel Center. The overall research effort seeks to enroll up to 30,000 people in the U.S. And Mexico how to buy cheap seroquel. It will prioritize participants from groups who are most affected by antidepressant drugs, including Latino, African American and Native American communities.

The testing will be done as a “randomized, double-blinded trial.” Among the participants, there will be two people getting treatment for every person receiving how to buy cheap seroquel placebo. Neither the participants nor the researchers will know who gets the treatment or who receives the placebo. The treatment, which is done as an injection in the upper arm, will be given in two doses, 21 days apart.Participants will be required to make 8-10 visits to how to buy cheap seroquel the clinic during the estimated 26-month study. Participation also includes modest compensation and, potentially, reimbursement for travel. As with previous U.S how to buy cheap seroquel.

Clinical trials for a antidepressant drugs treatment, patients who receive the placebo will likely be prioritized for vaccination if it is authorized for use. Those interested in participating or finding out if they qualify can visit the study's webpage.How the treatment worksThe Novavax treatment, called NVX-CoV2373, has a how to buy cheap seroquel subunit from the spike protein in antidepressants, the seroquel that causes antidepressant drugs. The spike protein is the main target for development of immunity. The subunit is combined with an adjuvant, a boosting agent to improve the body’s immune response to the treatment how to buy cheap seroquel. When this combination enters the body, it triggers an immune response to the spike protein and creates antibodies to fight it.The trial is led by Stuart Cohen, chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases and director of Hospital Epidemiology and Prevention at UC Davis Health.

He noted that this latest clinical trial also takes a natural how to buy cheap seroquel approach. It means that study participants are not intentionally exposed to the seroquel.“The [Novavax] treatment contains protein antigens that cannot replicate or cause antidepressant drugs. The antibodies generated by the treatment will help protect the body from the real, fully-potent seroquel,” Cohen said recently.Cohen’s research team plans how to buy cheap seroquel to monitor the number of participants who naturally contract antidepressant drugs among the vaccinated and placebo groups. One indicator that the treatment is working will be if there are substantially fewer infected participants in the vaccinated group than those who received the placebo.Novavax and other antidepressant drugs treatmentsCurrently, there are more than 100 treatments under development globally. Two treatments, Moderna and Pfizer, received emergency use authorizations from the federal Food and Drug Administration how to buy cheap seroquel and are now being used in the first U.S.

antidepressant drugs vaccinations programs, including at UC Davis Health.The Moderna and Pfizer treatments use what is called a “messenger RNA” model. The Novavax treatment follows a more traditional treatment model how to buy cheap seroquel. It also has a critical advantage. It can be stored at how to buy cheap seroquel temperatures between 36°F and 46°F (2°C to 8°C). This allows for a standard distribution of supplies, unlike the Pfizer and Moderna treatments, which must be stored at subzero temperatures.The Novavax trial is funded by a $1.7 million grant from the NIH’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and sponsored by Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center..

Seroquel xr diabetes

Start Preamble Department of Zithromax online shop Veterans seroquel xr diabetes Affairs. Interim final rule. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is issuing this interim final rule to confirm that its health care professionals may practice their health care profession consistent with the scope and requirements seroquel xr diabetes of their VA employment, notwithstanding any State license, registration, certification, or other requirements that unduly interfere with their practice.

Specifically, this rulemaking confirms VA's current practice of allowing VA health care professionals to deliver health care services in a State other than the health care professional's State of licensure, registration, certification, or other State requirement, thereby enhancing beneficiaries' access to critical VA health care services. This rulemaking also confirms VA's authority to establish national standards of practice for health care professionals which will standardize a health care professional's practice in all VA medical facilities seroquel xr diabetes. Effective Date.

This rule is effective on November 12, 2020. Comments seroquel xr diabetes. Comments must be received on or before January 11, 2021.

Comments may be submitted through www.Regulations.gov or seroquel xr diabetes mailed to, Beth Taylor, 10A1, 810 Vermont Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20420. Comments should indicate that they are submitted in response to [“RIN 2900-AQ94—Authority of VA Professionals to Practice Health Care.”] Comments received will be available at regulations.gov for public viewing, inspection, or copies. Start Further Info Beth seroquel xr diabetes Taylor, Chief Nursing Officer, Veterans Health Administration.

810 Vermont Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20420, (202) 461-7250. (This is not a toll-free number.) End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information On January 30, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the antidepressant drugs outbreak to be a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. On January seroquel xr diabetes 31, 2020, the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services declared a Public Health Emergency pursuant to 42 United States Code (U.S.C.) 247d, for the entire United States to aid in the nation's health care community response to the antidepressant drugs outbreak.

On March 11, 2020, in light of new data and the rapid spread in Europe, WHO declared antidepressant drugs to be a seroquel. On March 13, 2020, the President declared a National Emergency due to antidepressant drugs under sections 201 and 301 of the seroquel xr diabetes National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.) and consistent with section 1135 of the Social Security Act (SSA), as amended (42 U.S.C.

1320b-5). As a result of responding to the needs of our veteran population and other non-veteran beneficiaries during the antidepressant drugs National Emergency, where VA has had to shift health care Start Printed Page 71839professionals to other locations or duties to assist in the care of those affected by this seroquel, VA has become acutely aware of the need to promulgate this rule to clarify the policies governing VA's provision of health care. This rule is intended to confirm that VA health care professionals may practice their health care profession consistent with the scope and requirements of their VA employment, notwithstanding any State license, registration, certification, or other requirements that unduly interfere with their practice.

In particular, it will confirm (1) VA's continuing practice of authorizing VA health care professionals to deliver health care services in a State other than the health care professional's State of licensure, registration, certification, or other requirement. And (2) VA's authority to establish national standards of practice for health care professions via policy, which will govern their employment, subject only to State laws where the health care professional is licensed, credentialed, registered, or subject to some other State requirements that do not unduly interfere with those duties. We note that the term State as it applies to this rule means each of the several States, Territories, and possessions of the United States, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or a political subdivision of such State.

This definition is consistent with the term State as it is defined in 38 U.S.C. 101(20). A conflicting State law is one that would unduly interfere with the fulfillment of a VA health care professional's Federal duties.

We note that the policies and practices confirmed in this rule only apply to VA health care professionals appointed under 38 U.S.C. 7306, 7401, 7405, 7406, or 7408 or title 5 of the U.S. Code, which does not include contractors working in VA medical facilities or those working in the community.

VA has long understood its governing statutory authorities to permit VA to engage in these practices. Section 7301(b) of title 38 the U.S. Code establishes that the primary function of the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) within VA is to provide a complete medical and hospital service for the medical care and treatment of veterans.

To allow VHA to carry out its medical care mission, Congress established a comprehensive personnel system for certain VA health care professionals, independent of the civil service rules. See Chapters 73-74 of title 38 of the U.S. Code.

Congress granted the Secretary express statutory authority to establish the qualifications for VA's health care professionals, determine the hours and conditions of employment, take disciplinary action against employees, and otherwise regulate the professional activities of those individuals. 38 U.S.C. 7401-7464.

Section 7402 of 38 U.S.C. Establishes the qualifications of appointees. To be eligible for appointment as a VA employee in a health care profession covered by section 7402(b) (other than a medical facility Director appointed under section 7402(b)(4)), most individuals, after appointment, must, among other requirements, be licensed, registered, or certified to practice their profession in a State, or satisfy some other State requirement.

However, the standards prescribed in section 7402(b) establish only the basic qualifications for VA health care professionals and do not limit the Secretary from establishing other qualifications or rules for health care professionals. In addition, the Secretary is responsible for the control, direction, and management of the Department, including agency personnel and management matters. See 38 U.S.C.

303. Such authorities permit the Secretary to further regulate the health care professions to make certain that VA's health care system provides safe and effective health care by qualified health care professionals to ensure the well-being of those veterans who have borne the battle. In this rulemaking, VA is detailing its authority to manage its health care professionals by stating that they may practice their health care profession consistent with the scope and requirements of their VA employment, notwithstanding any State license, registration, certification, or other State requirements that unduly interfere with their practice.

VA believes that this is necessary in order to provide additional protection for VA health care professionals against adverse State actions proposed or taken against them when they are practicing within the scope of their VA employment, particularly when they are practicing across State lines or when they are performing duties consistent with a VA national standard of practice for their health care profession. Practice Across State Lines Historically, VA has operated as a national health care system that authorizes VA health care professionals to practice in any State as long as they have a valid license, registration, certification, or fulfill other State requirements in at least one State. In doing so, VA health care professionals have been practicing within the scope of their VA employment regardless of any unduly burdensome State requirements that would restrict practice across State lines.

We note, however, that VA may only hire health care professionals who are licensed, registered, certified, or satisfy some other requirement in a State, unless the statute requires or provides otherwise (e.g., 38 U.S.C. 7402(b)(14)). The antidepressant drugs seroquel has highlighted VA's acute need to exercise its statutory authority of allowing VA health care professionals to practice across State lines.

In response to the seroquel, VA needed to and continues to need to move health care professionals quickly across the country to care for veterans and other beneficiaries and not have State licensure, registration, certification, or other State requirements hinder such actions. Put simply, it is crucial for VA to be able to determine the location and practice of its VA health care professionals to carry out its mission without any unduly burdensome restrictions imposed by State licensure, registration, certification, or other requirements. This rulemaking will support VA's authority to do so and will provide an increased level of protection against any adverse State action being proposed or taken against VA health care professionals who practice within the scope of their VA employment.

Since the start of the seroquel, in furtherance of VA's Fourth Mission, VA has rapidly utilized its resources to assist parts of the country that are undergoing serious and critical shortages of health care resources. VA's Fourth Mission is to improve the Nation's preparedness for response to war, terrorism, national emergencies, and natural disasters by developing plans and taking actions to ensure continued service to veterans, as well as to support national, State, and local emergency management, public health, safety and homeland security efforts. VA has deployed personnel to support other VA medical facilities that have been impacted by antidepressant drugs as well as provided support to State and community nursing homes.

As of July 2020, VA has deployed personnel to more than 45 States. VA utilized the Disaster Emergency Medical Personnel System (DEMPS), VA's main deployment program, for VA health care professionals to travel to locations deemed as national emergency or disaster areas, to help provide health care services in places such as New Orleans, Louisiana, and New York City, New York. As of June 2020, a total of 1,893 staff have been mobilized to meet the needs of our facilities and Fourth Start Printed Page 71840Mission requests during the seroquel.

VA deployed 877 staff to meet Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Mission requests, 420 health care professionals were deployed as DEMPS response, 414 employees were mobilized to cross level staffing needs within their Veterans Integrated Service Networks (VISN), 69 employees were mobilized to support needs in another VISN, and 113 Travel Nurse Corps staff responded specifically for antidepressant drugs staffing support. In light of the rapidly changing landscape of the seroquel, it is crucial for VA to be able to move its health care professionals quickly across the country to assist when a new hot spot emerges without fear of any adverse action from a State be proposed or taken against a VA health care professional. We note that, in addition to providing in person health care across State lines during the seroquel, VA also provides telehealth across State lines.

VA's video to home services have been heavily leveraged during the seroquel to deliver safe, quality VA health care while adhering to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) physical distancing guidelines. Video visits to veterans' homes or other offsite location have increased from 41,425 in February 2020 to 657,423 in July of 2020. This represents a 1,478 percent utilization increase.

VA has specific statutory authority under 38 U.S.C. 1730C to allow health care professionals to practice telehealth in any State regardless of where they are licensed, registered, certified, or satisfy some other State requirement. This rulemaking is consistent with Congressional intent under Public Law 115-185, sec.

151, June 6, 2018, codified at 38 U.S.C. 1730C for all VA health care professionals to practice across State lines regardless of the location of where they provide health care. This rulemaking will ensure that VA professionals are protected regardless of how they provide health care, whether it be via telehealth or in-person.

Beyond the current need to mobilize health care resources quickly to different parts of the country, this practice of allowing VA health care professionals to practice across State lines optimizes the VA health care workforce to meet the needs of all VA beneficiaries year-round. It is common practice within the VA health care system to have primary and specialty health care professionals routinely travel to smaller VA medical facilities or rural locations in nearby States to provide care that may be difficult to obtain or unavailable in that community. As of January 14, 2020, out of 182,100 licensed health care professionals who are employed by VA, 25,313 or 14 percent do not hold a State license, registration, or certification in the same State as their main VA medical facility.

This number does not include the VA health care professionals who practice at a main VA medical facility in one State where they are licensed, registered, certified, or hold some other State requirement, but also practice at a nearby Community Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC) in a neighboring State where they do not hold such credentials. Indeed, 49 out of the 140 VA medical facilities nationwide have one or more sites of care in a different State than the main VA medical facility. Also, VA has rural mobile health units that provide health care services to veterans who have difficulty accessing VA health care facilities.

These mobile units are a vital source of health care to veterans who live in rural and medically underserved communities. Some of the services provided by the mobile units include, but are not limited to, health care screening, mental health outreach, influenza and pneumonia vaccinations, and routine primary care. The rural mobile health units are an integral part of VA's goal of encouraging healthier communities and support VA's preventative health programs.

Health care professionals who provide health care in these mobile units may provide services in various States where they may not hold a license, registration, or certification, or satisfy some other State requirement. It is critical that these health care professionals are protected from any adverse State action proposed or taken when performing these crucial services. In addition, the practice of health care professionals of providing health care across State lines also gives VA the flexibility to hire qualified health care professionals from any State to meet the staffing needs of a VA health care facility where recruitment or retention is difficult.

As of December 31, 2019, VA had approximately 13,000 vacancies for health care professions across the country. As a national health care system, it is imperative for VA to be able to recruit and retain health care professionals, where recruitment and retention is difficult, to ensure there is access to health care regardless of where the VA beneficiary resides. Permitting VA health care professionals to practice across State lines is an important incentive when trying to recruit for these vacancies, particularly during a seroquel, where private health care facilities have greater flexibility to offer more competitive pay and benefits.

This is also especially beneficial in recruiting spouses of active service members who frequently move across the country. National Standard of Practice This rulemaking also confirms VA's authority to establish national standards of practice for health care professions. We note that this rulemaking does not create any such national standards.

All national standards of practice will be created via policy. For the purposes of this rulemaking, a national standard of practice describes the tasks and duties that a VA health care professional practicing in the health care profession may perform and may be permitted to undertake. Having a national standard of practice means that individuals from the same VA health care profession may provide the same type of tasks and duties regardless of the VA medical facility where they are located or the State license, registration, certification, or other State requirement they hold.

We emphasize that VA will determine, on an individual basis, that a health care professional has the necessary education, training, and skills to perform the tasks and duties detailed in the national standard of practice. The need for national standards of practice have been highlighted by VA's large-scale initiative regarding the new electronic health record (EHR). VA's health care system is currently undergoing a transformational initiative to modernize the system by replacing its current EHR with a joint EHR with Department of Defense (DoD) to promote interoperability of medical data between VA and DoD.

VA's new EHR system will provide VA and DoD health care professionals with quick and efficient access to the complete picture of a veteran's health information, improving VA's delivery of health care to our nation's veterans. For this endeavor, DoD and VA established a joint governance over the EHR system. In order to be successful, VA must standardize clinical processes with DoD.

This means that all health care professionals in DoD and VA who practice in a certain health care profession must be able to carry out the same duties and tasks irrespective of State requirements. The reason why this is important is because each health care profession is designated a role in the EHR system that sets forth specific privileges within the EHR that dictate allowed tasks for such profession. These tasks include, but are not limited to, dispensing and administrating medications.

Prescriptive practices. Ordering of procedures and diagnostic imaging. And required level of oversight.

VA has the ability to modify these privileges within EHR, however, VA Start Printed Page 71841cannot do so on an individual user level, but rather at the role level for each health care profession. In other words, VA cannot modify the privileges for all health care professionals in one State to be consistent with that State's requirements. Instead, the privileges can only be modified for every health care professional in that role across all States.

Therefore, the privileges established within EHR cannot be made facility or State specific. In order to achieve standardized clinical processes, VA and DoD must create the uniform standards of practice for each health care specialty. Currently, DoD has specific authority from Congress to create national standards of practice for their health care professionals under 10 U.S.C.

1094. While VA lacks a similarly specific statute, VA has the general statutory authority, as explained above, to regulate its health care professionals and authorize health care practices that preempt conflicting State law. This regulation will confirm VA's authority to do so.

Absent such standardized practices, it will be incredibly difficult for VA to achieve its goal of being an active participant in EHR modernization because either some VA health care professionals would fear potential adverse State actions or DoD and VA would need to agree upon roles that are consistent with the most restrictive States' requirements to ensure that all health care professionals are acting within the scope of their State requirements. VA believes that agreement upon roles that are consistent with the most restrictive State is not an acceptable option because it will lead to delayed care and consequently decreased access and level of health care for VA beneficiaries. One example that impacts multiple health care professions throughout the VA system is the ability to administer medication without a provider (physician or advanced practice nurse practitioner) co-signature.

As it pertains to nursing, almost all States permit nurses to follow a protocol. However, some States, such as New York, North Carolina, and South Carolina, do not permit nurses to follow a protocol without a provider co-signature. A protocol is a standing order that has been approved by medical and clinical leadership if a certain sequence of health care events occur.

For instance, if a patient is exhibiting certain signs of a heart attack, there is a protocol in place to administer potentially life-saving medication. If the nurse is the first person to see the signs, the nurse will follow the approved protocol and immediately administer the medication. However, if the nurse cannot follow the protocol and requires a provider co-signature, administration of the medication will be delayed until a provider is able to co-sign the order, which may lead to the deterioration of the patient's condition.

This also increases the provider's workload and decreases the amount of time the provider can spend with patients. Historically, VA physical therapists (PTs), occupational therapists, and speech therapists were routinely able to determine the need to administer topical medications during therapy sessions and were able to administer the topical without a provider co-signature. However, in order to accommodate the new EHR system and variance in State requirements, these therapists would need to place an order for all medications, including topicals, which would leave these therapists waiting for a provider co-signature in the middle of a therapy session, thus delaying care.

Furthermore, these therapists also routinely ordered imaging to better assess the clinical needs of the patient, but would also have to wait for a provider co-signature, which will further delay care and increase provider workload. In addition to requiring provider co-signatures, there will also be a significant decrease in access to care due to other variances in State requirements. For instance, direct access to PTs will be limited in order to ensure that the role is consistent with all State requirements.

Direct access means that a beneficiary may request PT services without a provider's referral. However, while almost half of the States allow unrestricted direct access to PTs, over half of the States have some limitations on requesting PT services. For instance, in Alabama, a licensed PT may perform an initial evaluation and may only provide other services as delineated in specific subdivisions of the Alabama Physical Therapy Practice Act.

Furthermore, in New York, PT treatment may be rendered by a licensed PT for 10 visits or 30 days, whichever shall occur first, without a referral from a physician, dentist, podiatrist, nurse practitioner, or licensed midwife. This is problematic as VA will not be able to allow for direct access due to these variances and direct access has been shown to be beneficial for patient care. Currently, VISN 23 is completing a two-year strategic initiative to implement direct access and have PTs embedded into patient aligned care teams (PACT).

Outcomes thus far include decreased wait times, improved veteran satisfaction, improved provider satisfaction, and improved functional outcomes. Therefore, VA will confirm its authority to ensure that health care professionals are protected against State action when they adhere to VA's national standards of practice. We reiterate that this rulemaking does not establish national standards of practice for each health care profession, but merely confirms VA's authority to do so, thereby preempting any State restrictions that unduly interfere with those practices.

The actual national standards of practice will be developed in subregulatory policy for each health care profession. As such, VA will make a concerted effort to engage appropriate stakeholders when developing the national standards of practice. Preemption As previously explained, in this rulemaking, VA is confirming its authority to manage its health care professionals.

Specifically, this rulemaking will confirm VA's long-standing practice of allowing its health care professionals to practice in a State where they do not hold a license, registration, certification, or satisfy some other State requirement. The rule will also confirm that VA health care professionals must adhere to VA's national standards of practice, as determined by VA policy, irrespective of conflicting State licensing, registration, certification, or other State requirements that unduly burden that practice. We do note that VA health care professionals will only be required to perform tasks and duties to the extent of their education, skill, and training.

For instance, VA would not require a registered nurse to perform a task that the individual nurse was not trained to perform. Currently, practice in accordance with VA employment, including practice across State lines or adhering to a VA standard of practice, may jeopardize VA health care professionals' credentials or result in fines and imprisonment for unauthorized health care practice. This is because most States have restrictions that limit health care professionals' practice or have rules that prohibit health care professionals from furnishing health care services within that State without a license, registration, certification, or other requirement from that State.

We note that, some States, for example Rhode Island, Utah, and Michigan, have enacted legislation or regulations that specifically allow certain VA health care professionals to practice in those States when they do not hold a State license. Several VA health care professionals have already had actions proposed or taken against them by various States Start Printed Page 71842while practicing health care within the scope of their VA employment, while they either practiced in a State where they do not hold a license, registration, certification, or other State requirement that unduly interfered with their VA employment. In one instance, a VA psychologist was licensed in California but was employed and providing supervision of a trainee at the VA Medical Center (VAMC) in Nashville, Tennessee.

California psychology licensing laws require supervisors to hold a license from the State where they are practicing and do not allow for California licensed psychologists to provide supervision to trainees or unlicensed psychologists outside the State of California. The California State Psychology Licensing Board proposed sanctions and fines of $1,000 for violating section 1387.4(a) of the CA Code of Regulations (CCR). The VA system did not qualify for the exemption of out of State supervision requirements listed in CCR section 1387.4.

In addition, a VA physician who was licensed in Oregon, but was practicing at a VAMC in Biloxi, Mississippi had the status of their license changed from active to inactive because the Oregon Medical Board determined the professional did not reside in Oregon, in violation of Oregon's requirement that a physician physically reside in the State in order to maintain an active license. This rulemaking serves to preempt State requirements, such as the ones discussed above, that were or can be used to take an action against VA health care professionals for practicing within the scope of their VA employment. State licensure, registration, certification, and other State requirements are preempted to the extent such State laws unduly interfere with the ability of VA health care professionals to practice health care while acting within the scope of their VA employment.

As explained above, Congress provided general statutory provisions that permit the VA Secretary to authorize health care practices by health care professionals at VA, which serve to preempt conflicting State laws that unduly interfere with the exercise of health care by VA health care professionals pursuant to that authorization. Although some VA health care professionals are required by Federal statute to have a State license, see, e.g., 38 U.S.C. 7402(b)(1)(C) (providing that, to be eligible to be appointed to a physician position at the VA, a physician must be licensed to practice medicine, surgery, or osteopathy in a State), a State may not attach a condition to the license that is unduly burdensome to or unduly interferes with the practice of health care within the scope of VA employment.

Under well-established interpretations of the Supremacy Clause, Federal laws and policies authorizing VA health care professionals to practice according to VA standards preempt conflicting State law. That is, a State law that prevents or unreasonably interferes with the performance of VA duties. See, e.g., Hancock v.

Train, 426 U.S. 167, 178-81 (1976). Sperry v.

Florida, 373 U.S. 379, 385 (1963). Miller v.

Thomas, 173 U.S. 276, 282-84 (1899). State Bar Disciplinary Rules as Applied to Federal Government Attorneys, 9 Op.

O.L.C. 71, 72-73 (1985). When a State law does not conflict with the performance of Federal duties in these ways, VA health care professionals are required to abide by the State law.

Therefore, VA's policies and regulations will preempt State licensure, registration, and certification laws, rules, or other requirements only to the extent they conflict with the ability of VA health care professionals to practice health care while acting within the scope of their VA employment. We emphasize that, in instances where there is no conflict with State requirements, VA health care professionals should abide by the State requirement. For example, if a State license requires a health care professional to have a certain number of hours of continuing professional education per year to maintain their license, the health care professional must adhere to this State requirement if it does not prevent or unduly interfere with the exercise of VA employment.

To determine whether a State requirement is conflicting, VA would assess whether the State law unduly interferes on a case-by-case basis. For instance, if Oregon requires all licensed physicians to reside in Oregon, VA would likely find that it unduly interferes with already licensed VA physicians who reside and work for VA in the State of Mississippi. We emphasize that the intent of the regulation is to only preempt State requirements that are unduly burdensome and interfere with a VA health care professionals' practice for the VA.

For instance, it would not require a State to issue a license to an individual who does not meet the education requirements to receive a license in that State. We note that this rulemaking also does not affect VA's existing requirement that all VA health care professionals adhere to restrictions imposed by the Controlled Substances Act, 21 U.S.C. 801 et seq.

And implementing regulations at 21 CFR 1300, et seq., to prescribe or administer controlled substances. Any preemption of conflicting State requirements will be the minimum necessary for VA to effectively furnish health care services. It would be costly and time-consuming for VA to lobby each State board for each health care profession specialty to remove restrictions that impair VA's ability to furnish health care services to beneficiaries and then wait for the State to implement appropriate changes.

Doing so would not guarantee a successful result. Regulation For these reasons, VA is establishing a new regulation titled Health care professionals' practice in VA, which will be located at 38 CFR 17.419. This rule will confirm the ability of VA health care professionals to practice their health care profession consistent with the scope and requirements of their VA employment, notwithstanding any State license, registration, certification, or other requirements that unduly interfere with their practice.

Subsection (a) of § 17.419 contains the definitions that will apply to the new section. Subsection (a)(1) contains the definition for beneficiary. We are defining the term beneficiary to mean a veteran or any other individual receiving health care under title 38 of the U.S.

Code. We are using this definition because VA provides health care to veterans, certain family members of veterans, servicemembers, and others. This is VA's standard use of this term.

Subsection (a)(2) contains the definition for health care professional. We are defining the term health care professional to be an individual who meets specific criteria that is listed below. Subsection (a)(2)(i) will require that a health care professional be appointed to an occupation in VHA that is listed or authorized under 38 U.S.C.

7306, 7401, 7405, 7406, or 7408 or title 5 of the U.S. Code. Subsection (a)(2)(ii) requires that the individual is not a VA-contracted health care professional.

A health care professional does not include a contractor or a community health care professional because they are not considered VA employees nor appointed under 38 U.S.C. 7306, 7401, 7405, 7406, or 7408 or title 5 of the U.S. Code.

Subsection (a)(2)(iii) lists the required qualifications for a health care professional. We note that these qualifications do not include all general Start Printed Page 71843qualifications for appointment, such as to hold a degree of doctor of medicine. These qualifications are related to licensure, registration, certification, or other State requirements.

Subsection (a)(2)(iii)(A) states that the health care professional must have an active, current, full, and unrestricted license, registration, certification, or satisfies another State requirement in a State to practice the health care specialty identified under 38 U.S.C. 7402(b). This standard ensures that VA health care professionals are qualified to practice their individual health care specialty if the specialty requires such credential.

Subsection (a)(2)(iii)(B) states that the individual has other qualifications as prescribed by the Secretary for one of the health care professions listed under 38 U.S.C. 7402(b). Some health care professionals appointed under 38 U.S.C.

7401(3) whose qualifications are listed in 38 U.S.C. 7402(b) are not required to meet State license, registration, certification, or other requirements and rely on the qualifications prescribed by the Secretary. Therefore, these individuals would be included in this subsection and required to have the qualifications prescribed by the Secretary for their health care profession.

Subsection (a)(2)(iii)(C) states that the individual is otherwise authorized by the Secretary to provide health care services. This would include those individuals who practice a health care profession that does not require a State license, registration, certification, or other requirement and is also not listed in 38 U.S.C. 7402(b), but is authorized by the Secretary to provide health care services.

Subsection (a)(2)(iii)(D) includes individuals who are trainees or may have a time limited appointment to finish clinicals or other requirements prior to being fully licensed. Therefore, the regulation will state that the individual is under the clinical supervision of a health care professional that meets the requirements listed in subsection (a)(2)(iii)(A)-(C) and the individual must meet the requirements in subsection (a)(2)(iii)(D)(i) or (a)(2)(iii)(D)(ii). Subsection (a)(2)(iii)(D)(i) states that the individual is a health professions trainee appointed under 38 U.S.C.

7405 or 7406 participating in clinical or research training under supervision to satisfy program or degree requirements. Subsection (a)(2)(iii)(D)(ii) states that the individual is a health care employee, appointed under title 5 of the U.S. Code, 38 U.S.C.

7401(1) or (3), or 38 U.S.C. 7405 for any category of personnel described in 38 U.S.C. 7401(1) or (3) who must obtain an active, current, full and unrestricted licensure, registration, or certification or meet the qualification standards as defined by the Secretary within the specified time frame.

These individuals have a time-limited appointment to obtain credentials. For example, marriage and family therapists require a certain number of supervised clinical post-graduate hours prior to receiving their license. Lastly, as we previously discussed in this rulemaking, we are defining the term State in subsection (a)(3) as the term is defined in 38 U.S.C.

101(20), and also including political subdivisions of such States. This is consistent with the definition of State in 38 U.S.C. 1730C(f) which is VA's statutory authority to preempt State law when the covered health care professional is using telehealth to provide treatment to an individual under this title.

We believe that it is important to define the term in the same way as it is defined for health care professionals practicing via telehealth so that way it is consistent regardless of whether the health care professional is practicing in-person or via telehealth. Moreover, as subdivisions of a State are granted legal authority from the State itself, it makes sense to subject entities created by a State, or authorized by a State to create themselves, to be subject to the same limitations and restrictions as the State itself. Section 17.419(b) details that VA health care professionals must practice within the scope of their Federal employment irrespective of conflicting State requirements that would prevent or unduly interfere with the exercise of Federal duties.

This provision confirms that VA health care professionals may furnish health care consistent with their VA employment obligations without fear of adverse action proposed or taken by any State. In order to clarify and make transparent how VA utilizes or intends to utilize our current statutory authority, we are providing a non-exhaustive list of examples. The first example is listed in subsection (b)(1)(i).

It states that a health care professional may practice their VA health care profession in any State irrespective of the State where they hold a valid license, registration, certification, or other qualification. The second example is listed in subsection (b)(1)(ii). It states that a health care professional may practice their VA health care profession consistent with the VA national standard of practice as determined by VA.

As previously explained, VA intends to establish national standards of practice via VA policy. A health care professional's practice within VA will continue to be subject to the limitations imposed by the Controlled Substances Act, 21 U.S.C. 801, et seq.

And implementing regulations at 21 CFR 1300, et seq., on the authority to prescribe or administer controlled substances, as well as any other limitations on the provision of VA care set forth in applicable Federal law and policy. This will ensure that professionals are still in compliance with critical laws concerning the prescribing and administering of controlled substances. This requirement is stated in subsection (b)(2).

Subsection (c) expressly states the intended preemptive effect of § 17.419, to ensure that conflicting State and local laws, rules, regulations, and requirements related to health care professionals' practice will have no force or effect when such professionals are practicing health care while working within the scope of their VA employment. In circumstances where there is a conflict between Federal and State law, Federal law would prevail in accordance with Article VI, clause 2, of the U.S. Constitution.

Executive Order 13132 establishes principles for preemption of State law when it is implicated in rulemaking or proposed legislation. Where a Federal statute does not expressly preempt State law, agencies shall construe any authorization in the statute for the issuance of regulations as authorizing preemption of State law by rulemaking only when the exercise of State authority directly conflicts with the exercise of Federal authority or there is clear evidence to conclude that the Congress intended the agency to have the authority to preempt State law. In this situation, the Federal statutes do not expressly preempt State laws.

However, VA construes the authorization established in 38 U.S.C. 303, 501, and 7401-7464 as authorizing preemption because the exercise of State authority directly conflicts with the exercise of Federal authority under these statutes. Congress granted the Secretary express statutory authority to establish the qualifications for VA's health care professionals, determine the hours and conditions of employment, take disciplinary action against employees, and otherwise regulate the professional activities of those individuals.

38 U.S.C. 7401-7464. Specifically, section 7402(b) states that most health care professionals, after appointment by VA, must, among other Start Printed Page 71844requirements, be licensed, registered, or certified to practice their profession in a State.

To that end, VA's regulations and policies will preempt any State law or action that conflicts with the exercise of Federal duties in providing health care at VA. In addition, any regulatory preemption of State law must be restricted to the minimum level necessary to achieve the objectives of the statute pursuant to the regulations that are promulgated. In this rulemaking, State licensure, registration, and certification laws, rules, regulations, or other requirements are preempted only to the extent such State laws unduly interfere with the ability of VA health care professionals to practice health care while acting within the scope of their VA employment.

Therefore, VA believes that the rulemaking is restricted to the minimum level necessary to achieve the objectives of the Federal statutes. The Executive Order also requires an agency that is publishing a regulation that preempts State law to follow certain procedures. These procedures include.

The agency consult with, to the extent practicable, the appropriate State and local officials in an effort to avoid conflicts between State law and Federally protected interests. And the agency provide all affected State and local officials notice and an opportunity for appropriate participation in the proceedings. For the reasons below, VA believes that it is not practicable to consult with the appropriate State and local officials prior to the publication of this rulemaking.

The National Emergency caused by antidepressant drugs has highlighted VA's acute need to quickly shift health care professionals across the country. As both private and VA medical facilities in different parts of the country reach or exceed capacity, VA must be able to mobilize its health care professionals across State lines to provide critical care for those in need. As explained in the Supplementary Information above, as of June 2020, a total of 1,893 staff have been mobilized to meet the needs of our facilities and Fourth Mission requests during the seroquel.

VA deployed 877 staff to meet Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Mission requests, 420 health care professionals were deployed as DEMPS response, 414 employees were mobilized to cross level staffing needs within their Veterans Integrated Service Networks (VISN), 69 employees were mobilized to support needs in another VISN, and 113 Travel Nurse Corps staff responded specifically for antidepressant drugs staffing support. Given the speed in which it is required for our health care professionals to go to these facilities and provide health care, it is also essential that the health care professionals can follow the same standards of practice irrespective of the location of the facility or the requirements of their individual State license. This is important because if multiple health care professionals, such as multiple registered nurses, licensed in different States are all sent to one VA medical facility to assist when there is a shortage of professionals, it would be difficult and cumbersome if they could not all perform the same duties and each supervising provider had to be briefed on the tasks each registered nurse could perform.

In addition, not having a uniform national scope of practice could limit the tasks that the registered nurses could provide. This rulemaking will provide health care professionals an increased level of protection against adverse State actions while VA strives to increase access to high quality health care across the VA health care system during this National Emergency. It would be time consuming and contrary to the public health and safety to delay implementing this rulemaking until we consulted with State and local officials.

For these reasons, it would be impractical to consult with State and local officials prior to the publication of this rulemaking. We note that this rulemaking does not establish any national standards of practice. Instead, VA will establish the national standards of practice via subregulatory guidance.

VA will, to the extent practicable, make all efforts to engage with State and local officials when establishing the national standards of practice via subregulatory guidance. Also, this interim final rule will have a 60-day comment period that will allow State and local officials the opportunity to provide their input on the rule. Administrative Procedures Act An Agency may forgo notice and comment required under the Administrative Procedures Act (APA), 5 U.S.C.

553, if the agency for good cause finds that compliance would be impracticable, unnecessary, or contrary to the public interest. An agency may also bypass the APA's 30-day publication requirement if good cause exists. The Secretary of Veterans Affairs finds that there is good cause under the provisions of 5 U.S.C.

553(b)(B) to publish this rule without prior opportunity for public comment because it would be impracticable and contrary to the public interest and finds that there is good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3) to bypass its 30-day publication requirement for the same reasons as outlined above in the Federalism section, above. In short, this rulemaking will provide health care professionals protection against adverse State actions while VA strives to increase access to high quality health care across the VA health care system during this National Emergency.

In addition to the needs discussed above regarding the National Emergency, it is also imperative that VA move its health care professionals across State lines in order to facilitate the implementation of the new EHR system immediately. VA implemented EHR at the first VA facility in October 2020 and additional sites are scheduled to have EHR implemented over the course of the next eight years. The next site is scheduled for implementation in Quarter 2 of Fiscal Year 2021 (i.e., between January to March 2021).

Due to the implementation of the new EHR system, VA expects decreased productivity and reduced clinical staffing during training and other events surrounding EHR enactment. VA expects a productivity decrease of up to 30 percent for the 60 days before implementation and the 120 days after at each site. Any decrease in productivity could result in decreased access to health care for our Nation's veterans.

In order to support this anticipated productivity decrease, VA is engaging in a “national supplement,” where health care professionals from other VA medical facilities will be deployed to those VA medical facilities and VISNs that are undergoing EHR implementation. The national supplement would mitigate reduced access during EHR deployment activities, such as staff training, cutover, and other EHR implementation activities. Over the eight-year deployment timeline, the national supplement is estimated to have full time employee equivalents of approximately 60 nurses, 3 pharmacy technicians, 5 mental health and primary care providers, and other VA health care professionals.

We note that the actual number of VA health care professionals deployed to each site will vary based on need. The national supplement will require VA health care professionals on a national level to practice health care in States where they do not hold a State license, registration, certification, or other requirement. In addition, VISNs will be providing local cross-leveling and intra-VISN staff deployments to support EHRM implementation activities.

Put simply, in order to mitigate the decreased Start Printed Page 71845productivity as a result of EHR implementation, VA must transfer VA health care professionals across the country to States where they do not hold a license, registration, certification, or other requirement to assist in training on the new system as well as to support patient care. Therefore, it would be impracticable and contrary to the public health and safety to delay implementing this rulemaking until a full public notice-and-comment process is completed. This rulemaking will be effective upon publication in the Federal Register.

As noted above, this interim final rule will have a 60-day comment period that will allow State and local officials the opportunity to provide their input on the rule, and VA will take those comments into consideration when deciding whether any modifications to this rule are warranted. Paperwork Reduction Act This final rule contains no provisions constituting a collection of information under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3521).

Regulatory Flexibility Act The Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601-612, is not applicable to this rulemaking because a notice of proposed rulemaking is not required under 5 U.S.C. 553.

5 U.S.C. 601(2), 603(a), 604(a). Executive Orders 12866, 13563, and 13771 Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 direct agencies to assess the costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, when regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public health and safety effects, and other advantages.

Distributive impacts. And equity). Executive Order 13563 (Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review) emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and benefits, reducing costs, harmonizing rules, and promoting flexibility.

The Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs has determined that this rule is a significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866. VA's impact analysis can be found as a supporting document at http://www.regulations.gov, usually within 48 hours after the rulemaking document is published. Additionally, a copy of the rulemaking and its impact analysis are available on VA's website at http://www.va.gov/​orpm/​, by following the link for “VA Regulations Published From FY 2004 Through Fiscal Year to Date.” This interim final rule is not subject to the requirements of E.O.

13771 because this rule results in no more than de minimis costs. Unfunded Mandates The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 requires, at 2 U.S.C. 1532, that agencies prepare an assessment of anticipated costs and benefits before issuing any rule that may result in the expenditure by State, local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $100 million or more (adjusted annually for inflation) in any one year.

This interim final rule will have no such effect on State, local, and tribal governments, or on the private sector. Congressional Review Act Pursuant to the Congressional Review Act (5 U.S.C. 801 et seq.), the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs designated this rule as not a major rule, as defined by 5 U.S.C.

804(2). Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance The Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance numbers and titles for the programs affected by this document are. 64.007, Blind Rehabilitation Centers.

64.008, Veterans Domiciliary Care. 64.009, Veterans Medical Care Benefits. 64.010, Veterans Nursing Home Care.

64.011, Veterans Dental Care. 64.012, Veterans Prescription Service. 64.013, Veterans Prosthetic Appliances.

64.018, Sharing Specialized Medical Resources. 64.019, Veterans Rehabilitation Alcohol and Drug Dependence. 64.022, Veterans Home Based Primary Care.

64.039 CHAMPVA. 64.040 VHA Inpatient Medicine. 64.041 VHA Outpatient Specialty Care.

64.042 VHA Inpatient Surgery. 64.043 VHA Mental Health Residential. 64.044 VHA Home Care.

64.045 VHA Outpatient Ancillary Services. 64.046 VHA Inpatient Psychiatry. 64.047 VHA Primary Care.

64.048 VHA Mental Health Clinics. 64.049 VHA Community Living Center. And 64.050 VHA Diagnostic Care.

Start List of Subjects Administrative practice and procedureAlcohol abuseAlcoholismClaimsDay careDental healthDrug abuseForeign relationsGovernment contractsGrant programs-healthGrant programs-veteransHealth careHealth facilitiesHealth professionsHealth recordsHomelessMedical and dental schoolsMedical devicesMedical researchMental health programsNursing homesReporting and recordkeeping requirementsScholarships and fellowshipsTravel and transportation expensesVeterans End List of Subjects Signing Authority The Secretary of Veterans Affairs, or designee, approved this document and authorized the undersigned to sign and submit the document to the Office of the Federal Register for publication electronically as an official document of the Department of Veterans Affairs. Brooks D. Tucker, Assistant Secretary for Congressional and Legislative Affairs, Performing the Delegable Duties of the Chief of Staff, Department of Veterans Affairs, approved this document on October 19, 2020, for publication.

Start Signature Consuela Benjamin, Regulations Development Coordinator, Office of Regulation Policy &. Management, Office of the Secretary, Department of Veterans Affairs. End Signature For the reasons stated in the preamble, the Department of Veterans Affairs is amending 38 CFR part 17 as set forth below.

Start Part End Part Start Amendment Part1. The authority citation for part 17 is amended by adding an entry for § 17.419 in numerical order to read in part as follows. End Amendment Part Start Authority 38 U.S.C.

501, and as noted in specific sections. End Authority * * * * * Section 17.419 also issued under 38 U.S.C. 1701 (note), 7301, 7306, 7330A, 7401-7403, 7405, 7406, 7408).

* * * * * Start Amendment Part2. Add § 17.419 to read as follows. End Amendment Part Health care professionals' practice in VA.

(a) Definitions. The following definitions apply to this section. (1) Beneficiary.

The term beneficiary means a veteran or any other individual receiving health care under title 38 of the United States Code. (2) Health care professional. The term health care professional is an individual who.

(i) Is appointed to an occupation in the Veterans Health Administration that is listed in or authorized under 38 U.S.C. 7306, 7401, 7405, 7406, or 7408 or title 5 of the U.S. Code.

(ii) Is not a VA-contracted health care professional. And (iii) Is qualified to provide health care as follows. (A) Has an active, current, full, and unrestricted license, registration, certification, or satisfies another State requirement in a State.

(B) Has other qualifications as prescribed by the Secretary for one of Start Printed Page 71846the health care professions listed under 38 U.S.C. 7402(b). (C) Is an employee otherwise authorized by the Secretary to provide health care services.

Or (D) Is under the clinical supervision of a health care professional that meets the requirements of subsection (a)(2)(iii)(A)-(C) of this section and is either. (i) A health professions trainee appointed under 38 U.S.C. 7405 or 7406 participating in clinical or research training under supervision to satisfy program or degree requirements.

Or (ii) A health care employee, appointed under title 5 of the U.S. Code, 38 U.S.C. 7401(1) or (3), or 38 U.S.C.

7405 for any category of personnel described in 38 U.S.C. 7401(1) or (3) who must obtain an active, current, full and unrestricted licensure, registration, certification, or meet the qualification standards as defined by the Secretary within the specified time frame. (3) State.

The term State means a State as defined in 38 U.S.C. 101(20), or a political subdivision of such a State. (b) Health care professional's practice.

(1) When a State law or license, registration, certification, or other requirement prevents or unduly interferes with a health care professional's practice within the scope of their VA employment, the health care professional is required to abide by their Federal duties, which includes, but is not limited to, the following situations. (i) A health care professional may practice their VA health care profession in any State irrespective of the State where they hold a valid license, registration, certification, or other State qualification. Or (ii) A health care professional may practice their VA health care profession within the scope of the VA national standard of practice as determined by VA.

(2) VA health care professional's practice is subject to the limitations imposed by the Controlled Substances Act, 21 U.S.C. 801 et seq. And implementing regulations at 21 CFR 1300 et seq., on the authority to prescribe or administer controlled substances, as well as any other limitations on the provision of VA care set forth in applicable Federal law and policy.

(c) Preemption of State law. Pursuant to the Supremacy Clause, U.S. Const.

Art. IV, cl. 2, and in order to achieve important Federal interests, including, but not limited to, the ability to provide the same complete health care and hospital service to beneficiaries in all States as required by 38 U.S.C.

7301, conflicting State laws, rules, regulations or requirements pursuant to such laws are without any force or effect, and State governments have no legal authority to enforce them in relation to actions by health care professionals within the scope of their VA employment. End Supplemental Information [FR Doc. 2020-24817 Filed 11-10-20.

Start Preamble Department of Veterans Affairs how to buy cheap seroquel. Interim final rule. The Department how to buy cheap seroquel of Veterans Affairs (VA) is issuing this interim final rule to confirm that its health care professionals may practice their health care profession consistent with the scope and requirements of their VA employment, notwithstanding any State license, registration, certification, or other requirements that unduly interfere with their practice.

Specifically, this rulemaking confirms VA's current practice of allowing VA health care professionals to deliver health care services in a State other than the health care professional's State of licensure, registration, certification, or other State requirement, thereby enhancing beneficiaries' access to critical VA health care services. This rulemaking also confirms VA's authority to establish national standards of practice for health care professionals which will standardize a health care professional's practice how to buy cheap seroquel in all VA medical facilities. Effective Date.

This rule is effective on November 12, 2020. Comments how to buy cheap seroquel. Comments must be received on or before January 11, 2021.

Comments may be submitted through www.Regulations.gov or mailed to, Beth Taylor, how to buy cheap seroquel 10A1, 810 Vermont Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20420. Comments should indicate that they are submitted in response to [“RIN 2900-AQ94—Authority of VA Professionals to Practice Health Care.”] Comments received will be available at regulations.gov for public viewing, inspection, or copies. Start Further how to buy cheap seroquel Info Beth Taylor, Chief Nursing Officer, Veterans Health Administration.

810 Vermont Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20420, (202) 461-7250. (This is not a toll-free number.) End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information On January 30, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the antidepressant drugs outbreak to be a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. On January 31, 2020, the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human how to buy cheap seroquel Services declared a Public Health Emergency pursuant to 42 United States Code (U.S.C.) 247d, for the entire United States to aid in the nation's health care community response to the antidepressant drugs outbreak.

On March 11, 2020, in light of new data and the rapid spread in Europe, WHO declared antidepressant drugs to be a seroquel. On March 13, 2020, the President declared a National Emergency due to antidepressant drugs under how to buy cheap seroquel sections 201 and 301 of the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.) and consistent with section 1135 of the Social Security Act (SSA), as amended (42 U.S.C.

1320b-5). As a result of responding to the needs of our veteran population and other non-veteran beneficiaries during the antidepressant drugs National Emergency, where VA has had to shift health care Start Printed Page 71839professionals to other locations or duties to assist in the care of those affected by this seroquel, VA has become acutely aware of the need to promulgate this rule to clarify the policies governing VA's provision of health care. This rule is intended to confirm that VA health care professionals may practice their health care profession consistent with the scope and requirements of their VA employment, notwithstanding any State license, registration, certification, or other requirements that unduly interfere with their practice.

In particular, it will confirm (1) VA's continuing practice of authorizing VA health care professionals to deliver health care services in a State other than the health care professional's State of licensure, registration, certification, or other requirement. And (2) VA's authority to establish national standards of practice for health care professions via policy, which will govern their employment, subject only to State laws where the health care professional is licensed, credentialed, registered, or subject to some other State requirements that do not unduly interfere with those duties. We note that the term State as it applies to this rule means each of the several States, Territories, and possessions of the United States, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or a political subdivision of such State.

This definition is consistent with the term State as it is defined in 38 U.S.C. 101(20). A conflicting State law is one that would unduly interfere with the fulfillment of a VA health care professional's Federal duties.

We note that the policies and practices confirmed in this rule only apply to VA health care professionals appointed under 38 U.S.C. 7306, 7401, 7405, 7406, or 7408 or title 5 of the U.S. Code, which does not include contractors working in VA medical facilities or those working in the community.

VA has long understood its governing statutory authorities to permit VA to engage in these practices. Section 7301(b) of title 38 the U.S. Code establishes that the primary function of the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) within VA is to provide a complete medical and hospital service for the medical care and treatment of veterans.

To allow VHA to carry out its medical care mission, Congress established a comprehensive personnel system for certain VA health care professionals, independent of the civil service rules. See Chapters 73-74 of title 38 of the U.S. Code.

Congress granted the Secretary express statutory authority to establish the qualifications for VA's health care professionals, determine the hours and conditions of employment, take disciplinary action against employees, and otherwise regulate the professional activities of those individuals. 38 U.S.C. 7401-7464.

Section 7402 of 38 U.S.C. Establishes the qualifications of appointees. To be eligible for appointment as a VA employee in a health care profession covered by section 7402(b) (other than a medical facility Director appointed under section 7402(b)(4)), most individuals, after appointment, must, among other requirements, be licensed, registered, or certified to practice their profession in a State, or satisfy some other State requirement.

However, the standards prescribed in section 7402(b) establish only the basic qualifications for VA health care professionals and do not limit the Secretary from establishing other qualifications or rules for health care professionals. In addition, the Secretary is responsible for the control, direction, and management of the Department, including agency personnel and management matters. See 38 U.S.C.

303. Such authorities permit the Secretary to further regulate the health care professions to make certain that VA's health care system provides safe and effective health care by qualified health care professionals to ensure the well-being of those veterans who have borne the battle. In this rulemaking, VA is detailing its authority to manage its health care professionals by stating that they may practice their health care profession consistent with the scope and requirements of their VA employment, notwithstanding any State license, registration, certification, or other State requirements that unduly interfere with their practice.

VA believes that this is necessary in order to provide additional protection for VA health care professionals against adverse State actions proposed or taken against them when they are practicing within the scope of their VA employment, particularly when they are practicing across State lines or when they are performing duties consistent with a VA national standard of practice for their health care profession. Practice Across State Lines Historically, VA has operated as a national health care system that authorizes VA health care professionals to practice in any State as long as they have a valid license, registration, certification, or fulfill other State requirements in at least one State. In doing so, VA health care professionals have been practicing within the scope of their VA employment regardless of any unduly burdensome State requirements that would restrict practice across State lines.

We note, however, that VA may only hire health care professionals who are licensed, registered, certified, or satisfy some other requirement in a State, unless the statute requires or provides otherwise (e.g., 38 U.S.C. 7402(b)(14)). The antidepressant drugs seroquel has highlighted VA's acute need to exercise its statutory authority of allowing VA health care professionals to practice across State lines.

In response to the seroquel, VA needed to and continues to need to move health care professionals quickly across the country to care for veterans and other beneficiaries and not have State licensure, registration, certification, or other State requirements hinder such actions. Put simply, it is crucial for VA to be able to determine the location and practice of its VA health care professionals to carry out its mission without any unduly burdensome restrictions imposed by State licensure, registration, certification, or other requirements. This rulemaking will support VA's authority to do so and will provide an increased level of protection against any adverse State action being proposed or taken against VA health care professionals who practice within the scope of their VA employment.

Since the start of the seroquel, in furtherance of VA's Fourth Mission, VA has rapidly utilized its resources to assist parts of the country that are undergoing serious and critical shortages of health care resources. VA's Fourth Mission is to improve the Nation's preparedness for response to war, terrorism, national emergencies, and natural disasters by developing plans and taking actions to ensure continued service to veterans, as well as to support national, State, and local emergency management, public health, safety and homeland security efforts. VA has deployed personnel to support other VA medical facilities that have been impacted by antidepressant drugs as well as provided support to State and community nursing homes.

As of July 2020, VA has deployed personnel to more than 45 States. VA utilized the Disaster Emergency Medical Personnel System (DEMPS), VA's main deployment program, for VA health care professionals to travel to locations deemed as national emergency or disaster areas, to help provide health care services in places such as New Orleans, Louisiana, and New York City, New York. As of June 2020, a total of 1,893 staff have been mobilized to meet the needs of our facilities and Fourth Start Printed Page 71840Mission requests during the seroquel.

VA deployed 877 staff to meet Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Mission requests, 420 health care professionals were deployed as DEMPS response, 414 employees were mobilized to cross level staffing needs within their Veterans Integrated Service Networks (VISN), 69 employees were mobilized to support needs in another VISN, and 113 Travel Nurse Corps staff responded specifically for antidepressant drugs staffing support. In light of the rapidly changing landscape of the seroquel, it is crucial for VA to be able to move its health care professionals quickly across the country to assist when a new hot spot emerges without fear of any adverse action from a State be proposed or taken against a VA health care professional. We note that, in addition to providing in person health care across State lines during the seroquel, VA also provides telehealth across State lines.

VA's video to home services have been heavily leveraged during the seroquel to deliver safe, quality VA health care while adhering to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) physical distancing guidelines. Video visits to veterans' homes or other offsite location have increased from 41,425 in February 2020 to 657,423 in July of 2020. This represents a 1,478 percent utilization increase.

VA has specific statutory authority under 38 U.S.C. 1730C to allow health care professionals to practice telehealth in any State regardless of where they are licensed, registered, certified, or satisfy some other State requirement. This rulemaking is consistent with Congressional intent under Public Law 115-185, sec.

151, June 6, 2018, codified at 38 U.S.C. 1730C for all VA health care professionals to practice across State lines regardless of the location of where they provide health care. This rulemaking will ensure that VA professionals are protected regardless of how they provide health care, whether it be via telehealth or in-person.

Beyond the current need to mobilize health care resources quickly to different parts of the country, this practice of allowing VA health care professionals to practice across State lines optimizes the VA health care workforce to meet the needs of all VA beneficiaries year-round. It is common practice within the VA health care system to have primary and specialty health care professionals routinely travel to smaller VA medical facilities or rural locations in nearby States to provide care that may be difficult to obtain or unavailable in that community. As of January 14, 2020, out of 182,100 licensed health care professionals who are employed by VA, 25,313 or 14 percent do not hold a State license, registration, or certification in the same State as their main VA medical facility.

This number does not include the VA health care professionals who practice at a main VA medical facility in one State where they are licensed, registered, certified, or hold some other State requirement, but also practice at a nearby Community Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC) in a neighboring State where they do not hold such credentials. Indeed, 49 out of the 140 VA medical facilities nationwide have one or more sites of care in a different State than the main VA medical facility. Also, VA has rural mobile health units that provide health care services to veterans who have difficulty accessing VA health care facilities.

These mobile units are a vital source of health care to veterans who live in rural and medically underserved communities. Some of the services provided by the mobile units include, but are not limited to, health care screening, mental health outreach, influenza and pneumonia vaccinations, and routine primary care. The rural mobile health units are an integral part of VA's goal of encouraging healthier communities and support VA's preventative health programs.

Health care professionals who provide health care in these mobile units may provide services in various States where they may not hold a license, registration, or certification, or satisfy some other State requirement. It is critical that these health care professionals are protected from any adverse State action proposed or taken when performing these crucial services. In addition, the practice of health care professionals of providing health care across State lines also gives VA the flexibility to hire qualified health care professionals from any State to meet the staffing needs of a VA health care facility where recruitment or retention is difficult.

As of December 31, 2019, VA had approximately 13,000 vacancies for health care professions across the country. As a national health care system, it is imperative for VA to be able to recruit and retain health care professionals, where recruitment and retention is difficult, to ensure there is access to health care regardless of where the VA beneficiary resides. Permitting VA health care professionals to practice across State lines is an important incentive when trying to recruit for these vacancies, particularly during a seroquel, where private health care facilities have greater flexibility to offer more competitive pay and benefits.

This is also especially beneficial in recruiting spouses of active service members who frequently move across the country. National Standard of Practice This rulemaking also confirms VA's authority to establish national standards of practice for health care professions. We note that this rulemaking does not create any such national standards.

All national standards of practice will be created via policy. For the purposes of this rulemaking, a national standard of practice describes the tasks and duties that a VA health care professional practicing in the health care profession may perform and may be permitted to undertake. Having a national standard of practice means that individuals from the same VA health care profession may provide the same type of tasks and duties regardless of the VA medical facility where they are located or the State license, registration, certification, or other State requirement they hold.

We emphasize that VA will determine, on an individual basis, that a health care professional has the necessary education, training, and skills to perform the tasks and duties detailed in the national standard of practice. The need for national standards of practice have been highlighted by VA's large-scale initiative regarding the new electronic health record (EHR). VA's health care system is currently undergoing a transformational initiative to modernize the system by replacing its current EHR with a joint EHR with Department of Defense (DoD) to promote interoperability of medical data between VA and DoD.

VA's new EHR system will provide VA and DoD health care professionals with quick and efficient access to the complete picture of a veteran's health information, improving VA's delivery of health care to our nation's veterans. For this endeavor, DoD and VA established a joint governance over the EHR system. In order to be successful, VA must standardize clinical processes with DoD.

This means that all health care professionals in DoD and VA who practice in a certain health care profession must be able to carry out the same duties and tasks irrespective of State requirements. The reason why this is important is because each health care profession is designated a role in the EHR system that sets forth specific privileges within the EHR that dictate allowed tasks for such profession. These tasks include, but are not limited to, dispensing and administrating medications.

Prescriptive practices. Ordering of procedures and diagnostic imaging. And required level of oversight.

VA has the ability to modify these privileges within EHR, however, VA Start Printed Page 71841cannot do so on an individual user level, but rather at the role level for each health care profession. In other words, VA cannot modify the privileges for all health care professionals in one State to be consistent with that State's requirements. Instead, the privileges can only be modified for every health care professional in that role across all States.

Therefore, the privileges established within EHR cannot be made facility or State specific. In order to achieve standardized clinical processes, VA and DoD must create the uniform standards of practice for each health care specialty. Currently, DoD has specific authority from Congress to create national standards of practice for their health care professionals under 10 U.S.C.

1094. While VA lacks a similarly specific statute, VA has the general statutory authority, as explained above, to regulate its health care professionals and authorize health care practices that preempt conflicting State law. This regulation will confirm VA's authority to do so.

Absent such standardized practices, it will be incredibly difficult for VA to achieve its goal of being an active participant in EHR modernization because either some VA health care professionals would fear potential adverse State actions or DoD and VA would need to agree upon roles that are consistent with the most restrictive States' requirements to ensure that all health care professionals are acting within the scope of their State requirements. VA believes that agreement upon roles that are consistent with the most restrictive State is not an acceptable option because it will lead to delayed care and consequently decreased access and level of health care for VA beneficiaries. One example that impacts multiple health care professions throughout the VA system is the ability to administer medication without a provider (physician or advanced practice nurse practitioner) co-signature.

As it pertains to nursing, almost all States permit nurses to follow a protocol. However, some States, such as New York, North Carolina, and South Carolina, do not permit nurses to follow a protocol without a provider co-signature. A protocol is a standing order that has been approved by medical and clinical leadership if a certain sequence of health care events occur.

For instance, if a patient is exhibiting certain signs of a heart attack, there is a protocol in place to administer potentially life-saving medication. If the nurse is the first person to see the signs, the nurse will follow the approved protocol and immediately administer the medication. However, if the nurse cannot follow the protocol and requires a provider co-signature, administration of the medication will be delayed until a provider is able to co-sign the order, which may lead to the deterioration of the patient's condition.

This also increases the provider's workload and decreases the amount of time the provider can spend with patients. Historically, VA physical therapists (PTs), occupational therapists, and speech therapists were routinely able to determine the need to administer topical medications during therapy sessions and were able to administer the topical without a provider co-signature. However, in order to accommodate the new EHR system and variance in State requirements, these therapists would need to place an order for all medications, including topicals, which would leave these therapists waiting for a provider co-signature in the middle of a therapy session, thus delaying care.

Furthermore, these therapists also routinely ordered imaging to better assess the clinical needs of the patient, but would also have to wait for a provider co-signature, which will further delay care and increase provider workload. In addition to requiring provider co-signatures, there will also be a significant decrease in access to care due to other variances in State requirements. For instance, direct access to PTs will be limited in order to ensure that the role is consistent with all State requirements.

Direct access means that a beneficiary may request PT services without a provider's referral. However, while almost half of the States allow unrestricted direct access to PTs, over half of the States have some limitations on requesting PT services. For instance, in Alabama, a licensed PT may perform an initial evaluation and may only provide other services as delineated in specific subdivisions of the Alabama Physical Therapy Practice Act.

Furthermore, in New York, PT treatment may be rendered by a licensed PT for 10 visits or 30 days, whichever shall occur first, without a referral from a physician, dentist, podiatrist, nurse practitioner, or licensed midwife. This is problematic as VA will not be able to allow for direct access due to these variances and direct access has been shown to be beneficial for patient care. Currently, VISN 23 is completing a two-year strategic initiative to implement direct access and have PTs embedded into patient aligned care teams (PACT).

Outcomes thus far include decreased wait times, improved veteran satisfaction, improved provider satisfaction, and improved functional outcomes. Therefore, VA will confirm its authority to ensure that health care professionals are protected against State action when they adhere to VA's national standards of practice. We reiterate that this rulemaking does not establish national standards of practice for each health care profession, but merely confirms VA's authority to do so, thereby preempting any State restrictions that unduly interfere with those practices.

The actual national standards of practice will be developed in subregulatory policy for each health care profession. As such, VA will make a concerted effort to engage appropriate stakeholders when developing the national standards of practice. Preemption As previously explained, in this rulemaking, VA is confirming its authority to manage its health care professionals.

Specifically, this rulemaking will confirm VA's long-standing practice of allowing its health care professionals to practice in a State where they do not hold a license, registration, certification, or satisfy some other State requirement. The rule will also confirm that VA health care professionals must adhere to VA's national standards of practice, as determined by VA policy, irrespective of conflicting State licensing, registration, certification, or other State requirements that unduly burden that practice. We do note that VA health care professionals will only be required to perform tasks and duties to the extent of their education, skill, and training.

For instance, VA would not require a registered nurse to perform a task that the individual nurse was not trained to perform. Currently, practice in accordance with VA employment, including practice across State lines or adhering to a VA standard of practice, may jeopardize VA health care professionals' credentials or result in fines and imprisonment for unauthorized health care practice. This is because most States have restrictions that limit health care professionals' practice or have rules that prohibit health care professionals from furnishing health care services within that State without a license, registration, certification, or other requirement from that State.

We note that, some States, for example Rhode Island, Utah, and Michigan, have enacted legislation or regulations that specifically allow certain VA health care professionals to practice in those States when they do not hold a State license. Several VA health care professionals have already had actions proposed or taken against them by various States Start Printed Page 71842while practicing health care within the scope of their VA employment, while they either practiced in a State where they do not hold a license, registration, certification, or other State requirement that unduly interfered with their VA employment. In one instance, a VA psychologist was licensed in California but was employed and providing supervision of a trainee at the VA Medical Center (VAMC) in Nashville, Tennessee.

California psychology licensing laws require supervisors to hold a license from the State where they are practicing and do not allow for California licensed psychologists to provide supervision to trainees or unlicensed psychologists outside the State of California. The California State Psychology Licensing Board proposed sanctions and fines of $1,000 for violating section 1387.4(a) of the CA Code of Regulations (CCR). The VA system did not qualify for the exemption of out of State supervision requirements listed in CCR section 1387.4.

In addition, a VA physician who was licensed in Oregon, but was practicing at a VAMC in Biloxi, Mississippi had the status of their license changed from active to inactive because the Oregon Medical Board determined the professional did not reside in Oregon, in violation of Oregon's requirement that a physician physically reside in the State in order to maintain an active license. This rulemaking serves to preempt State requirements, such as the ones discussed above, that were or can be used to take an action against VA health care professionals for practicing within the scope of their VA employment. State licensure, registration, certification, and other State requirements are preempted to the extent such State laws unduly interfere with the ability of VA health care professionals to practice health care while acting within the scope of their VA employment.

As explained above, Congress provided general statutory provisions that permit the VA Secretary to authorize health care practices by health care professionals at VA, which serve to preempt conflicting State laws that unduly interfere with the exercise of health care by VA health care professionals pursuant to that authorization. Although some VA health care professionals are required by Federal statute to have a State license, see, e.g., 38 U.S.C. 7402(b)(1)(C) (providing that, to be eligible to be appointed to a physician position at the VA, a physician must be licensed to practice medicine, surgery, or osteopathy in a State), a State may not attach a condition to the license that is unduly burdensome to or unduly interferes with the practice of health care within the scope of VA employment.

Under well-established interpretations of the Supremacy Clause, Federal laws and policies authorizing VA health care professionals to practice according to VA standards preempt conflicting State law. That is, a State law that prevents or unreasonably interferes with the performance of VA duties. See, e.g., Hancock v.

Train, 426 U.S. 167, 178-81 (1976). Sperry v.

Florida, 373 U.S. 379, 385 (1963). Miller v.

Thomas, 173 U.S. 276, 282-84 (1899). State Bar Disciplinary Rules as Applied to Federal Government Attorneys, 9 Op.

O.L.C. 71, 72-73 (1985). When a State law does not conflict with the performance of Federal duties in these ways, VA health care professionals are required to abide by the State law.

Therefore, VA's policies and regulations will preempt State licensure, registration, and certification laws, rules, or other requirements only to the extent they conflict with the ability of VA health care professionals to practice health care while acting within the scope of their VA employment. We emphasize that, in instances where there is no conflict with State requirements, VA health care professionals should abide by the State requirement. For example, if a State license requires a health care professional to have a certain number of hours of continuing professional education per year to maintain their license, the health care professional must adhere to this State requirement if it does not prevent or unduly interfere with the exercise of VA employment.

To determine whether a State requirement is conflicting, VA would assess whether the State law unduly interferes on a case-by-case basis. For instance, if Oregon requires all licensed physicians to reside in Oregon, VA would likely find that it unduly interferes with already licensed VA physicians who reside and work for VA in the State of Mississippi. We emphasize that the intent of the regulation is to only preempt State requirements that are unduly burdensome and interfere with a VA health care professionals' practice for the VA.

For instance, it would not require a State to issue a license to an individual who does not meet the education requirements to receive a license in that State. We note that this rulemaking also does not affect VA's existing requirement that all VA health care professionals adhere to restrictions imposed by the Controlled Substances Act, 21 U.S.C. 801 et seq.

And implementing regulations at 21 CFR 1300, et seq., to prescribe or administer controlled substances. Any preemption of conflicting State requirements will be the minimum necessary for VA to effectively furnish health care services. It would be costly and time-consuming for VA to lobby each State board for each health care profession specialty to remove restrictions that impair VA's ability to furnish health care services to beneficiaries and then wait for the State to implement appropriate changes.

Doing so would not guarantee a successful result. Regulation For these reasons, VA is establishing a new regulation titled Health care professionals' practice in VA, which will be located at 38 CFR 17.419. This rule will confirm the ability of VA health care professionals to practice their health care profession consistent with the scope and requirements of their VA employment, notwithstanding any State license, registration, certification, or other requirements that unduly interfere with their practice.

Subsection (a) of § 17.419 contains the definitions that will apply to the new section. Subsection (a)(1) contains the definition for beneficiary. We are defining the term beneficiary to mean a veteran or any other individual receiving health care under title 38 of the U.S.

Code. We are using this definition because VA provides health care to veterans, certain family members of veterans, servicemembers, and others. This is VA's standard use of this term.

Subsection (a)(2) contains the definition for health care professional. We are defining the term health care professional to be an individual who meets specific criteria that is listed below. Subsection (a)(2)(i) will require that a health care professional be appointed to an occupation in VHA that is listed or authorized under 38 U.S.C.

7306, 7401, 7405, 7406, or 7408 or title 5 of the U.S. Code. Subsection (a)(2)(ii) requires that the individual is not a VA-contracted health care professional.

A health care professional does not include a contractor or a community health care professional because they are not considered VA employees nor appointed under 38 U.S.C. 7306, 7401, 7405, 7406, or 7408 or title 5 of the U.S. Code.

Subsection (a)(2)(iii) lists the required qualifications for a health care professional. We note that these qualifications do not include all general Start Printed Page 71843qualifications for appointment, such as to hold a degree of doctor of medicine. These qualifications are related to licensure, registration, certification, or other State requirements.

Subsection (a)(2)(iii)(A) states that the health care professional must have an active, current, full, and unrestricted license, registration, certification, or satisfies another State requirement in a State to practice the health care specialty identified under 38 U.S.C. 7402(b). This standard ensures that VA health care professionals are qualified to practice their individual health care specialty if the specialty requires such credential.

Subsection (a)(2)(iii)(B) states that the individual has other qualifications as prescribed by the Secretary for one of the health care professions listed under 38 U.S.C. 7402(b). Some health care professionals appointed under 38 U.S.C.

7401(3) whose qualifications are listed in 38 U.S.C. 7402(b) are not required to meet State license, registration, certification, or other requirements and rely on the qualifications prescribed by the Secretary. Therefore, these individuals would be included in this subsection and required to have the qualifications prescribed by the Secretary for their health care profession.

Subsection (a)(2)(iii)(C) states that the individual is otherwise authorized by the Secretary to provide health care services. This would include those individuals who practice a health care profession that does not require a State license, registration, certification, or other requirement and is also not listed in 38 U.S.C. 7402(b), but is authorized by the Secretary to provide health care services.

Subsection (a)(2)(iii)(D) includes individuals who are trainees or may have a time limited appointment to finish clinicals or other requirements prior to being fully licensed. Therefore, the regulation will state that the individual is under the clinical supervision of a health care professional that meets the requirements listed in subsection (a)(2)(iii)(A)-(C) and the individual must meet the requirements in subsection (a)(2)(iii)(D)(i) or (a)(2)(iii)(D)(ii). Subsection (a)(2)(iii)(D)(i) states that the individual is a health professions trainee appointed under 38 U.S.C.

7405 or 7406 participating in clinical or research training under supervision to satisfy program or degree requirements. Subsection (a)(2)(iii)(D)(ii) states that the individual is a health care employee, appointed under title 5 of the U.S. Code, 38 U.S.C.

7401(1) or (3), or 38 U.S.C. 7405 for any category of personnel described in 38 U.S.C. 7401(1) or (3) who must obtain an active, current, full and unrestricted licensure, registration, or certification or meet the qualification standards as defined by the Secretary within the specified time frame.

These individuals have a time-limited appointment to obtain credentials. For example, marriage and family therapists require a certain number of supervised clinical post-graduate hours prior to receiving their license. Lastly, as we previously discussed in this rulemaking, we are defining the term State in subsection (a)(3) as the term is defined in 38 U.S.C.

101(20), and also including political subdivisions of such States. This is consistent with the definition of State in 38 U.S.C. 1730C(f) which is VA's statutory authority to preempt State law when the covered health care professional is using telehealth to provide treatment to an individual under this title.

We believe that it is important to define the term in the same way as it is defined for health care professionals practicing via telehealth so that way it is consistent regardless of whether the health care professional is practicing in-person or via telehealth. Moreover, as subdivisions of a State are granted legal authority from the State itself, it makes sense to subject entities created by a State, or authorized by a State to create themselves, to be subject to the same limitations and restrictions as the State itself. Section 17.419(b) details that VA health care professionals must practice within the scope of their Federal employment irrespective of conflicting State requirements that would prevent or unduly interfere with the exercise of Federal duties.

This provision confirms that VA health care professionals may furnish health care consistent with their VA employment obligations without fear of adverse action proposed or taken by any State. In order to clarify and make transparent how VA utilizes or intends to utilize our current statutory authority, we are providing a non-exhaustive list of examples. The first example is listed in subsection (b)(1)(i).

It states that a health care professional may practice their VA health care profession in any State irrespective of the State where they hold a valid license, registration, certification, or other qualification. The second example is listed in subsection (b)(1)(ii). It states that a health care professional may practice their VA health care profession consistent with the VA national standard of practice as determined by VA.

As previously explained, VA intends to establish national standards of practice via VA policy. A health care professional's practice within VA will continue to be subject to the limitations imposed by the Controlled Substances Act, 21 U.S.C. 801, et seq.

And implementing regulations at 21 CFR 1300, et seq., on the authority to prescribe or administer controlled substances, as well as any other limitations on the provision of VA care set forth in applicable Federal law and policy. This will ensure that professionals are still in compliance with critical laws concerning the prescribing and administering of controlled substances. This requirement is stated in subsection (b)(2).

Subsection (c) expressly states the intended preemptive effect of § 17.419, to ensure that conflicting State and local laws, rules, regulations, and requirements related to health care professionals' practice will have no force or effect when such professionals are practicing health care while working within the scope of their VA employment. In circumstances where there is a conflict between Federal and State law, Federal law would prevail in accordance with Article VI, clause 2, of the U.S. Constitution.

Executive Order 13132 establishes principles for preemption of State law when it is implicated in rulemaking or proposed legislation. Where a Federal statute does not expressly preempt State law, agencies shall construe any authorization in the statute for the issuance of regulations as authorizing preemption of State law by rulemaking only when the exercise of State authority directly conflicts with the exercise of Federal authority or there is clear evidence to conclude that the Congress intended the agency to have the authority to preempt State law. In this situation, the Federal statutes do not expressly preempt State laws.

However, VA construes the authorization established in 38 U.S.C. 303, 501, and 7401-7464 as authorizing preemption because the exercise of State authority directly conflicts with the exercise of Federal authority under these statutes. Congress granted the Secretary express statutory authority to establish the qualifications for VA's health care professionals, determine the hours and conditions of employment, take disciplinary action against employees, and otherwise regulate the professional activities of those individuals.

38 U.S.C. 7401-7464. Specifically, section 7402(b) states that most health care professionals, after appointment by VA, must, among other Start Printed Page 71844requirements, be licensed, registered, or certified to practice their profession in a State.

To that end, VA's regulations and policies will preempt any State law or action that conflicts with the exercise of Federal duties in providing health care at VA. In addition, any regulatory preemption of State law must be restricted to the minimum level necessary to achieve the objectives of the statute pursuant to the regulations that are promulgated. In this rulemaking, State licensure, registration, and certification laws, rules, regulations, or other requirements are preempted only to the extent such State laws unduly interfere with the ability of VA health care professionals to practice health care while acting within the scope of their VA employment.

Therefore, VA believes that the rulemaking is restricted to the minimum level necessary to achieve the objectives of the Federal statutes. The Executive Order also requires an agency that is publishing a regulation that preempts State law to follow certain procedures. These procedures include.

The agency consult with, to the extent practicable, the appropriate State and local officials in an effort to avoid conflicts between State law and Federally protected interests. And the agency provide all affected State and local officials notice and an opportunity for appropriate participation in the proceedings. For the reasons below, VA believes that it is not practicable to consult with the appropriate State and local officials prior to the publication of this rulemaking.

The National Emergency caused by antidepressant drugs has highlighted VA's acute need to quickly shift health care professionals across the country. As both private and VA medical facilities in different parts of the country reach or exceed capacity, VA must be able to mobilize its health care professionals across State lines to provide critical care for those in need. As explained in the Supplementary Information above, as of June 2020, a total of 1,893 staff have been mobilized to meet the needs of our facilities and Fourth Mission requests during the seroquel.

VA deployed 877 staff to meet Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Mission requests, 420 health care professionals were deployed as DEMPS response, 414 employees were mobilized to cross level staffing needs within their Veterans Integrated Service Networks (VISN), 69 employees were mobilized to support needs in another VISN, and 113 Travel Nurse Corps staff responded specifically for antidepressant drugs staffing support. Given the speed in which it is required for our health care professionals to go to these facilities and provide health care, it is also essential that the health care professionals can follow the same standards of practice irrespective of the location of the facility or the requirements of their individual State license. This is important because if multiple health care professionals, such as multiple registered nurses, licensed in different States are all sent to one VA medical facility to assist when there is a shortage of professionals, it would be difficult and cumbersome if they could not all perform the same duties and each supervising provider had to be briefed on the tasks each registered nurse could perform.

In addition, not having a uniform national scope of practice could limit the tasks that the registered nurses could provide. This rulemaking will provide health care professionals an increased level of protection against adverse State actions while VA strives to increase access to high quality health care across the VA health care system during this National Emergency. It would be time consuming and contrary to the public health and safety to delay implementing this rulemaking until we consulted with State and local officials.

For these reasons, it would be impractical to consult with State and local officials prior to the publication of this rulemaking. We note that this rulemaking does not establish any national standards of practice. Instead, VA will establish the national standards of practice via subregulatory guidance.

VA will, to the extent practicable, make all efforts to engage with State and local officials when establishing the national standards of practice via subregulatory guidance. Also, this interim final rule will have a 60-day comment period that will allow State and local officials the opportunity to provide their input on the rule. Administrative Procedures Act An Agency may forgo notice and comment required under the Administrative Procedures Act (APA), 5 U.S.C.

553, if the agency for good cause finds that compliance would be impracticable, unnecessary, or contrary to the public interest. An agency may also bypass the APA's 30-day publication requirement if good cause exists. The Secretary of Veterans Affairs finds that there is good cause under the provisions of 5 U.S.C.

553(b)(B) to publish this rule without prior opportunity for public comment because it would be impracticable and contrary to the public interest and finds that there is good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3) to bypass its 30-day publication requirement for the same reasons as outlined above in the Federalism section, above. In short, this rulemaking will provide health care professionals protection against adverse State actions while VA strives to increase access to high quality health care across the VA health care system during this National Emergency.

In addition to the needs discussed above regarding the National Emergency, it is also imperative that VA move its health care professionals across State lines in order to facilitate the implementation of the new EHR system immediately. VA implemented EHR at the first VA facility in October 2020 and additional sites are scheduled to have EHR implemented over the course of the next eight years. The next site is scheduled for implementation in Quarter 2 of Fiscal Year 2021 (i.e., between January to March 2021).

Due to the implementation of the new EHR system, VA expects decreased productivity and reduced clinical staffing during training and other events surrounding EHR enactment. VA expects a productivity decrease of up to 30 percent for the 60 days before implementation and the 120 days after at each site. Any decrease in productivity could result in decreased access to health care for our Nation's veterans.

In order to support this anticipated productivity decrease, VA is engaging in a “national supplement,” where health care professionals from other VA medical facilities will be deployed to those VA medical facilities and VISNs that are undergoing EHR implementation. The national supplement would mitigate reduced access during EHR deployment activities, such as staff training, cutover, and other EHR implementation activities. Over the eight-year deployment timeline, the national supplement is estimated to have full time employee equivalents of approximately 60 nurses, 3 pharmacy technicians, 5 mental health and primary care providers, and other VA health care professionals.

We note that the actual number of VA health care professionals deployed to each site will vary based on need. The national supplement will require VA health care professionals on a national level to practice health care in States where they do not hold a State license, registration, certification, or other requirement. In addition, VISNs will be providing local cross-leveling and intra-VISN staff deployments to support EHRM implementation activities.

Put simply, in order to mitigate the decreased Start Printed Page 71845productivity as a result of EHR implementation, VA must transfer VA health care professionals across the country to States where they do not hold a license, registration, certification, or other requirement to assist in training on the new system as well as to support patient care. Therefore, it would be impracticable and contrary to the public health and safety to delay implementing this rulemaking until a full public notice-and-comment process is completed. This rulemaking will be effective upon publication in the Federal Register.

As noted above, this interim final rule will have a 60-day comment period that will allow State and local officials the opportunity to provide their input on the rule, and VA will take those comments into consideration when deciding whether any modifications to this rule are warranted. Paperwork Reduction Act This final rule contains no provisions constituting a collection of information under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3521).

Regulatory Flexibility Act The Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601-612, is not applicable to this rulemaking because a notice of proposed rulemaking is not required under 5 U.S.C. 553.

5 U.S.C. 601(2), 603(a), 604(a). Executive Orders 12866, 13563, and 13771 Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 direct agencies to assess the costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, when regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public health and safety effects, and other advantages.

Distributive impacts. And equity). Executive Order 13563 (Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review) emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and benefits, reducing costs, harmonizing rules, and promoting flexibility.

The Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs has determined that this rule is a significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866. VA's impact analysis can be found as a supporting document at http://www.regulations.gov, usually within 48 hours after the rulemaking document is published. Additionally, a copy of the rulemaking and its impact analysis are available on VA's website at http://www.va.gov/​orpm/​, by following the link for “VA Regulations Published From FY 2004 Through Fiscal Year to Date.” This interim final rule is not subject to the requirements of E.O.

13771 because this rule results in no more than de minimis costs. Unfunded Mandates The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 requires, at 2 U.S.C. 1532, that agencies prepare an assessment of anticipated costs and benefits before issuing any rule that may result in the expenditure by State, local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $100 million or more (adjusted annually for inflation) in any one year.

This interim final rule will have no such effect on State, local, and tribal governments, or on the private sector. Congressional Review Act Pursuant to the Congressional Review Act (5 U.S.C. 801 et seq.), the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs designated this rule as not a major rule, as defined by 5 U.S.C.

804(2). Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance The Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance numbers and titles for the programs affected by this document are. 64.007, Blind Rehabilitation Centers.

64.008, Veterans Domiciliary Care. 64.009, Veterans Medical Care Benefits. 64.010, Veterans Nursing Home Care.

64.011, Veterans Dental Care. 64.012, Veterans Prescription Service. 64.013, Veterans Prosthetic Appliances.

64.018, Sharing Specialized Medical Resources. 64.019, Veterans Rehabilitation Alcohol and Drug Dependence. 64.022, Veterans Home Based Primary Care.

64.039 CHAMPVA. 64.040 VHA Inpatient Medicine. 64.041 VHA Outpatient Specialty Care.

64.042 VHA Inpatient Surgery. 64.043 VHA Mental Health Residential. 64.044 VHA Home Care.

64.045 VHA Outpatient Ancillary Services. 64.046 VHA Inpatient Psychiatry. 64.047 VHA Primary Care.

64.048 VHA Mental Health Clinics. 64.049 VHA Community Living Center. And 64.050 VHA Diagnostic Care.

Start List of Subjects Administrative practice and procedureAlcohol abuseAlcoholismClaimsDay careDental healthDrug abuseForeign relationsGovernment contractsGrant programs-healthGrant programs-veteransHealth careHealth facilitiesHealth professionsHealth recordsHomelessMedical and dental schoolsMedical devicesMedical researchMental health programsNursing homesReporting and recordkeeping requirementsScholarships and fellowshipsTravel and transportation expensesVeterans End List of Subjects Signing Authority The Secretary of Veterans Affairs, or designee, approved this document and authorized the undersigned to sign and submit the document to the Office of the Federal Register for publication electronically as an official document of the Department of Veterans Affairs. Brooks D. Tucker, Assistant Secretary for Congressional and Legislative Affairs, Performing the Delegable Duties of the Chief of Staff, Department of Veterans Affairs, approved this document on October 19, 2020, for publication.

Start Signature Consuela Benjamin, Regulations Development Coordinator, Office of Regulation Policy &. Management, Office of the Secretary, Department of Veterans Affairs. End Signature For the reasons stated in the preamble, the Department of Veterans Affairs is amending 38 CFR part 17 as set forth below.

Start Part End Part Start Amendment Part1. The authority citation for part 17 is amended by adding an entry for § 17.419 in numerical order to read in part as follows. End Amendment Part Start Authority 38 U.S.C.

501, and as noted in specific sections. End Authority * * * * * Section 17.419 also issued under 38 U.S.C. 1701 (note), 7301, 7306, 7330A, 7401-7403, 7405, 7406, 7408).

* * * * * Start Amendment Part2. Add § 17.419 to read as follows. End Amendment Part Health care professionals' practice in VA.

(a) Definitions. The following definitions apply to this section. (1) Beneficiary.

The term beneficiary means a veteran or any other individual receiving health care under title 38 of the United States Code. (2) Health care professional. The term health care professional is an individual who.

(i) Is appointed to an occupation in the Veterans Health Administration that is listed in or authorized under 38 U.S.C. 7306, 7401, 7405, 7406, or 7408 or title 5 of the U.S. Code.

(ii) Is not a VA-contracted health care professional. And (iii) Is qualified to provide health care as follows. (A) Has an active, current, full, and unrestricted license, registration, certification, or satisfies another State requirement in a State.

(B) Has other qualifications as prescribed by the Secretary for one of Start Printed Page 71846the health care professions listed under 38 U.S.C. 7402(b). (C) Is an employee otherwise authorized by the Secretary to provide health care services.

Or (D) Is under the clinical supervision of a health care professional that meets the requirements of subsection (a)(2)(iii)(A)-(C) of this section and is either. (i) A health professions trainee appointed under 38 U.S.C. 7405 or 7406 participating in clinical or research training under supervision to satisfy program or degree requirements.

Or (ii) A health care employee, appointed under title 5 of the U.S. Code, 38 U.S.C. 7401(1) or (3), or 38 U.S.C.

7405 for any category of personnel described in 38 U.S.C. 7401(1) or (3) who must obtain an active, current, full and unrestricted licensure, registration, certification, or meet the qualification standards as defined by the Secretary within the specified time frame. (3) State.

The term State means a State as defined in 38 U.S.C. 101(20), or a political subdivision of such a State. (b) Health care professional's practice.

(1) When a State law or license, registration, certification, or other requirement prevents or unduly interferes with a health care professional's practice within the scope of their VA employment, the health care professional is required to abide by their Federal duties, which includes, but is not limited to, the following situations. (i) A health care professional may practice their VA health care profession in any State irrespective of the State where they hold a valid license, registration, certification, or other State qualification. Or (ii) A health care professional may practice their VA health care profession within the scope of the VA national standard of practice as determined by VA.

(2) VA health care professional's practice is subject to the limitations imposed by the Controlled Substances Act, 21 U.S.C. 801 et seq. And implementing regulations at 21 CFR 1300 et seq., on the authority to prescribe or administer controlled substances, as well as any other limitations on the provision of VA care set forth in applicable Federal law and policy.

(c) Preemption of State law. Pursuant to the Supremacy Clause, U.S. Const.

Art. IV, cl. 2, and in order to achieve important Federal interests, including, but not limited to, the ability to provide the same complete health care and hospital service to beneficiaries in all States as required by 38 U.S.C.

7301, conflicting State laws, rules, regulations or requirements pursuant to such laws are without any force or effect, and State governments have no legal authority to enforce them in relation to actions by health care professionals within the scope of their VA employment. End Supplemental Information [FR Doc. 2020-24817 Filed 11-10-20.