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WMC Statement on Proclamation 20-05 relating to Physician Assistants

On March 26, Governor Inslee issued an additional proclamation addressing potential regulatory barriers to pandemic response during the COVID-19 crisis in Washington State. The order is in effect for 30 days unless extended by act of the legislature. The amended proclamation 20-32 can be found here.

Section ‘C’ of the proclamation relates to physician assistant practice, both allopathic and osteopathic. Effective immediately, the Governor has waived all requirements for the following:

  • Laws and rules relating to remote site restrictions
  • Laws and rules relating to physician supervision ratios
  • Laws and rules relating to delegation agreement requirements
  • Rules relating to CME requirements for license renewals including:
    • Seven hours of HIV/AIDs training
    • Suicide prevention training
  • Rules relating to compensation restrictions and CME requirements for retired active PAs

Additionally, the WMC conducted emergency rulemaking to remove requirements for retired active physician assistants to encourage their return to practice. The WMC removed the compensation limitation and CME requirements, effective immediately. The two WMC initiated waivers last 120 days or until the Governor rescinds Proclamation 20-05.

The effect of the Governor’s Proclamation and WMC emergency rulemaking is physician assistants may be utilized in any area of medicine for which they are competent to practice. There is no requirement for delegation agreements to employ or utilize a physician assistant and there are no remote site or supervision ratio restrictions that limit their use. The requirement of the physician assistant to be a part of a healthcare team and take responsibility for their professional actions remains in effect.