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MADISON (April 8, 2014)– The Wisconsin Medical Society commends Governor Scott Walker and the Wisconsin Legislature for adoption of a number of bills that will benefit patients in Wisconsin.
This afternoon, Gov. Walker signed into law Assembly Bill 120—the “physician apology bill”—as well as Assembly Bill 453, which facilitates better continuity of care among health care professionals for patients with mental health needs. Sen. Leah Vukmir (R-Wauwatosa) and Rep. Erik Severson, MD, (R-Osceola) authored both bills. Yesterday, the Governor signed the Heroin Opiate Prevention and Education (HOPE) legislative package, a series of bills authored by Rep. John Nygren (R-Marinette) aimed at stemming the growing problem of heroin and other drug abuse in Wisconsin.
“The Society has been a strong proponent of legislation that promotes conversations between a physician and a patient or patient’s family following an unexpected or a negative outcome. AB 120 will foster more patient-physician interactions exactly when they’re needed most,” said Society President Richard A. Dart, MD. “And of course, it’s difficult to turn on the TV or read a newspaper without seeing another heart wrenching story about lives being destroyed by heroin. It’s a tremendous problem we’ve got to address and the HOPE package confronts this epidemic head-on.”
“We applaud both Governor Walker and the legislators who introduced and supported all of these bills,” Dr. Dart added. “Their enactment will certainly have a positive impact on health and health care in Wisconsin.”