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Physician Assistants Supervision And Liability

Concerning physician assistants, and, in connection therewith, establishing requirements for the supervision of physician assistants, establishing liability for physician assistants, and increasing the number of physician assistant members on the Colorado medical board.
2019 Regular Session
Health Care & Health Insurance
Bill Summary

The bill establishes supervisory requirements for physician assistants who:

  • Have practiced for less than 3 years;
  • Have practiced for 3 years or more; or
  • Have practiced for at least 12 months and are making a substantive change in their scope of practice or practice area.

Current law states that a licensed physician may be responsible for the direction and supervision of up to 4 physician assistants at any one time and may be responsible for the direction and supervision of more than 4 physician assistants upon receiving specific approval from the Colorado medical board (board). The bill eliminates this restriction.

The bill adds 2 more physician assistants as members of the board, for a total of 3 physician assistant members. Current law requires the president of the board to establish a licensing panel consisting of 3 members of the board. The bill adds a fourth member to the licensing panel; that is, a person who is a physician assistant member of the board.

The bill states that a physician assistant who has practiced for at least 3 years may be liable for damages resulting from negligence in providing care to a patient; except that a physician assistant is not liable for any such damages that occur as a result of the physician assistant following a direct order from a supervising physician.

Current law requires that when persons licensed to practice medicine form professional service corporations for the practice of medicine, the articles of incorporation of such corporations must state that one or more licensed physician assistants may be a shareholder of the corporation as long as the physician shareholders maintain majority ownership of the corporation. The bill removes this requirement.

(Note: This summary applies to this bill as introduced.)


Under Consideration

Bill Text


Sponsor Type Legislators
Prime Sponsor

Rep. L. Cutter, Rep. L. Landgraf
Sen. R. Fields