Legislation Proposed to Tighten Rules on Lasik Clinics - 8 News NOW

Legislation Proposed to Tighten Rules on Lasik Clinics

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An I-Team investigation of a local lasik clinic has prompted lawmakers to tighten the regulation of laser surgery centers.

The bill introduced earlier this week will clarify an existing law that requires state health regulators to license some lasik clinics. It will also give those regulators the authority to close centers that operate without a license.

During an I-Team investigation of the Valley Eye Center, state authorities initially insisted no laser eye surgery centers who employed an ophthalmologist need be licensed. But as complaints against the facility piled up, regulators revisited the law and found Valley Eye did not qualify for the exemption.

The legislation, proposed by Assemblywoman Sheila Leslie, is designed to clear up any confusion surrounding the intent of the law.

Also this week, a hearing master with the State Medical Board ruled three doctors associated with Valley Eye will have separate hearings. Doctors Stella Chou, Paul Cutarelli and Anamika Jain all argued allegations against one of them could negatively impact the others.

Med board staff disagreed and explained the case comes down to one simple question -- where do you cross the line between what is the practice of medicine and what can be done by a technician or a medical assistant.

The hearing master agreed disagreed and granted the doctor's motion.

Saturday, a joint meeting of the legislative health committees will be held in Las Vegas. In addition to a discussion about the proposed lasik law, it will hear testimony related to the hepatitis C crisis in southern Nevada.

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