A new law for direct access to nurses, physiotherapists and speech therapists

To fight against medical deserts, a law has just been adopted: that of the Renaissance deputy Stéphanie Rist. Voted unanimously on Thursday at first reading, with the abstention of the RN and LR, this text allows direct access to certain nurses, physiotherapists and speech therapists, despite the protests of doctors.

It will be examined by the Senate on February 14 and “restates that the general practitioner is at the center of the course”, but allows “he is not the first seen in consultation, but perhaps the second”, explained the deputy Stephanie Rist. It is “not an end in itself but the first step in the overhaul of our health system”, underlined the Minister of Health François Braun in the hemicycle.

Nurses now allowed to prescribe certain drugs

Very upset, the collective “Doctors for tomorrow”, at the forefront of the recent liberal strike, wrote to elected officials and prefects to be moved that “medical acts are carried out by non-medical professionals”.

The proposed law aims in particular to expand the missions of nurses in advanced practice (IPA), a status created by the Touraine law of 2016 and then a decree in 2018. They would now be authorized to make certain prescriptions for care and medication. Patients could go to these caregivers without going through a doctor, but always as part of a “coordinated exercise” with the latter.

A new status of assistant in oral medicine

The Assembly also adopted a government amendment to authorize all nurses to take care of wounds, in coordination with a doctor, after dedicated training.

The bill also allows “direct access” to physiotherapists and speech therapists working in health establishments. In the same logic, the text strengthens the prerogatives of dental assistants, with a new status of assistant in oral medicine. Chiropodists can prescribe plantar orthoses, and opticians adapt a prescription from ophthalmologists.

The pharmacist could renew chronic treatments for a maximum of three months, when the prescribing physician is not available.

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