Florida Senate - 2018                                     SB 520
       By Senator Latvala
       16-00380A-18                                           2018520__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to optometrists; amending s. 463.006,
    3         F.S.; revising the requirements that applicants must
    4         meet in order to qualify to take optometric licensure
    5         and certification examinations; clarifying
    6         interpretation of the authority of the Board of
    7         Optometry to offer a practical examination in addition
    8         to a written examination; specifying that applicants
    9         must graduate from an accredited school or college of
   10         optometry in order to obtain a license and practice as
   11         optometrists; providing an effective date.
   13  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   15         Section 1. Section 463.006, Florida Statutes, is amended to
   16  read:
   17         463.006 Licensure and certification by examination.—
   18         (1) Any person desiring to be a licensed practitioner
   19  pursuant to this chapter must shall apply to the department to
   20  take the licensure and certification examinations. The
   21  department shall examine each applicant who the board determines
   22  has:
   23         (a) Completed the application forms as required by the
   24  board, remitted an application fee for certification not to
   25  exceed $250, remitted an examination fee for certification not
   26  to exceed $250, and remitted an examination fee for licensure
   27  not to exceed $325, all as set by the board.
   28         (b) Submitted proof satisfactory to the department that she
   29  or he:
   30         1. Is at least 18 years of age.
   31         2. Has graduated from an accredited school or college of
   32  optometry approved by rule of the board, or is attending such a
   33  school or college and expects to graduate within 24 months
   34  following the date of application.
   35         3. Is of good moral character.
   36         4. Has successfully completed at least 110 hours of
   37  transcript-quality coursework and clinical training in general
   38  and ocular pharmacology as determined by the board, at an
   39  institution that:
   40         a. Has facilities for both didactic and clinical
   41  instructions in pharmacology; and
   42         b. Is accredited by a regional or professional accrediting
   43  organization that is recognized and approved by the Commission
   44  on Recognition of Postsecondary Accreditation or the United
   45  States Department of Education.
   46         5. Has completed at least 1 year of supervised experience
   47  in differential diagnosis of eye disease or disorders as part of
   48  the optometric training or in a clinical setting as part of the
   49  optometric experience.
   50         (2) The examination shall consist of the appropriate
   51  subjects and include, including applicable state laws and rules
   52  and general and ocular pharmacology with emphasis on the use and
   53  side effects of ocular pharmaceutical agents. The board may by
   54  rule substitute a national examination as part or all of the
   55  examination and, notwithstanding any provision of chapter 456 to
   56  the contrary, may by rule offer a practical examination in
   57  addition to a the written examination.
   58         (3) Each applicant who successfully passes the examination
   59  and otherwise meets the requirements of this chapter, provided
   60  that such applicant has graduated from an accredited school or
   61  college of optometry approved by rule of the board, is entitled
   62  to be licensed as a practitioner and to be certified to
   63  administer and prescribe ocular pharmaceutical agents in the
   64  diagnosis and treatment of ocular conditions.
   65         Section 2. This act shall take effect upon becoming a law.