A. The Board shall promulgate such regulations governing the treatment of diseases and abnormal conditions of the human eye and its adnexa with therapeutic pharmaceutical agents by TPA-certified optometrists as are reasonable and necessary to ensure an appropriate standard of medical care for patients, including, but not limited to, determinations of the diseases and abnormal conditions of the human eye and its adnexa that may be treated by TPA-certified optometrists, treatment guidelines, and the drugs specified on the TPA-Formulary.In establishing standards of instruction and training, the Board shall consult with a school or college of optometry and a school or college of medicine and shall set a minimum number of hours of clinical training to be supervised by an ophthalmologist. The didactic and clinical training programs may include, but need not be limited to, programs offered or designed either by schools of medicine or schools or colleges of optometry or both or some combination thereof.The Board may prepare, administer, and grade appropriate examinations for the certification of optometrists to administer therapeutic pharmaceutical agents or may contract with a school of medicine, school or college of optometry, or other institution or entity to develop, administer, and grade the examinations.In order to maintain a current and appropriate list of therapeutic pharmaceuticals on the TPA-Formulary, current and appropriate treatment guidelines, and current and appropriate determinations of diseases and abnormal conditions of the eye and its adnexa that may be treated by TPA-certified optometrists, the Board may, from time to time, amend such regulations. Such regulations shall be exempt from the requirements of the Administrative Process Act (§ 2.2-4000 et seq.), except to any extent that they may be specifically made subject to §§ 2.2-4024, 2.2-4030, and 2.2-4031; the Board’s regulations shall, however, comply with § 2.2-4103 of the Virginia Register Act (§ 2.2-4100 et seq.). The Board shall, however, conduct a public hearing prior to making amendments to the TPA-Formulary, the treatment guidelines or the determinations of diseases and abnormal conditions of the eye and its adnexa that may be treated by TPA-certified optometrists. Thirty days prior to conducting such hearing, the Board shall give written notice by mail of the date, time, and place of the hearing to all currently TPA-certified optometrists and any other persons requesting to be notified of the hearings and publish notice of its intention to amend the list in the Virginia Register of Regulations. During the public hearing, interested parties shall be given reasonable opportunity to be heard and present information prior to final adoption of any TPA-Formulary amendments. Proposed and final amendments of the list shall also be published, pursuant to § 2.2-4031, in the Virginia Register of Regulations. Final amendments to the TPA-Formulary shall become effective upon filing with the Registrar of Regulations. The TPA-Formulary shall be the inclusive list of the therapeutic pharmaceutical agents that a TPA-certified optometrist may prescribe.
B. To assist in the specification of the TPA-Formulary, there shall be a seven-member TPA-Formulary Committee, as follows: three Virginia TPA-certified optometrists to be appointed by the Board of Optometry, one pharmacist appointed by the Board of Pharmacy from among its licensees, two ophthalmologists appointed by the Board of Medicine from among its licensees, and the chairman who shall be appointed by the Board of Optometry from among its members. The ophthalmologists appointed by the Board of Medicine shall have demonstrated, through professional experience, knowledge of the optometric profession. In the event the Board of Pharmacy or the Board of Medicine fails to make appointments to the TPA-Formulary Committee within 30 days following the Board of Optometry’s requesting such appointments, or within 30 days following any subsequent vacancy, the Board of Optometry shall appoint such members.The TPA-Formulary Committee shall recommend to the Board those therapeutic pharmaceutical agents to be included on the TPA-Formulary for the treatment of diseases and abnormal conditions of the eye and its adnexa by TPA-certified optometrists.
1996, cc. 152, 158; 2004, c. 744.