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Volume XI, Number 128


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Texas Medical Board Passes Emergency Rules Enforcing Gov. Abbott's Executive Order GA-09, relating to hospital capacity during the Coronavirus disaster

On March 22, 2020, Governor Greg Abbott issued Executive Order GA-09 to increase health care and hospital capacity during the COVID-19 pandemic. The order states that “all licensed health care professionals and all licensed health care facilities shall postpone all surgeries and procedures that are not immediately medically necessary to correct a serious medical condition of, or to preserve the life of, a patient who with immediate performance of the surgery or procedure would be at risk for serious adverse medical consequences or death, as determined by the patient’s physician.”

The Texas Medical Board (TMB) swiftly adopted emergency rules to enforce the order’s prohibition against all unnecessary medical procedures by amending the definition of "Continuing Threat to the Public Welfare," to include specifically prohibited actions in connection with surgeries and procedures deemed unnecessary.

Additionally, the Board amended the peer review and hospital reporting rule to sanction immediate reporting rather than utilize the peer review process. These amendments seek to minimize delays in reporting and allows immediate utilization of disciplinary authority granted to the Board under Texas Occupations Code, §164.059.

In addition the emergency rule adoption by the TMB, the Texas Attorney General, Ken Paxton clarified in a press release that the prohibition extends to routine dermatological, dental and ophthalmological procedures, orthopedic surgeries, as well as any type of abortion, unless the procedure is necessary to preserve the life or health of the mother. The order is in effect until April 21, 2020.

The Medical Board's Executive Committee adopted to amend the following under 22 TAC Chapters 187, Procedural Rules, Subchapter F, Temporary Suspension and Restriction Proceedings and 178, Complaints:

The Board will provide further guidance and FAQs on the TMB website.

For more information about recommended steps, please contact your Foley relationship partner. For additional web-based resources available to assist you in monitoring the spread of the coronavirus on a global basis, you may wish to visit the CDC and the World Health Organization

© 2021 Foley & Lardner LLPNational Law Review, Volume X, Number 90



About this Author

Amy Beard Public Affairs Attorney Foley & Lardner Austin, TX
Public Affairs Advisor Sr

Amy Beard is a public affairs advisor with Foley & Lardner LLP. Amy has over 13 years of experience in government relations, reputation management, public policy, and legislative advocacy.

Amy’s experience includes being a founder of Windmill Consulting where she lobbied for clients such as Google, Uber, DJI Technology, and Walmart. Prior to Windmill Consulting, Amy was the governmental affairs consultant at Cammack & Strong, P.C., where for over 10 years she provided consulting services and advocacy on policy issues for clients in various industries including technology,...

Craig P. Chick Public Affairs Attorney Foley & Lardner Austin, TX
Director, Public Affairs

Craig Chick is a public affairs director with Foley & Lardner LLP. Prior to Foley, he was a former senior advisor to Speaker Joe Straus on issues impacting business, energy, and government efficiency. Prior to working in the speaker’s office, Craig spent over 15 years as a senior advisor to Texas House and Senate members such as Kyle Janek and Fred Bosse. Having been involved in Texas politics for over 23 years, Craig has advised members of the House and Senate on political discourse involving alcohol, economic development, electric generation and transmission, employment,...

Kimberly A. Yelkin Government Affairs Attorney Foley & Lardner Austin, TX

Kim Yelkin is a nationally recognized expert in government affairs and is routinely consulted by clients for her expertise in strategy and execution. Kim brings a unique blend of legal talent and business acumen to assist her clients in solving complex problems which include high-profile legislative issues, litigation avoidance and routine regulatory matters before various state agencies. She is engaged by clients to coordinate multi-state regulatory and legislative projects to maximize their long-term competitive advantage and defend against governmental action adverse to their interests...