OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma Osteopathic Association (OOA) today announced its opposition to State Question 793, a proposed constitutional amendment that would allow big box stores like Walmart to open optometry clinics within their retail spaces and dictate the scope of practice for their doctors. The OOA represents almost 2000 doctors and hundreds of residents and medical students.
The organization released the following statement:
“The Oklahoma Osteopathic Association (OOA) has announced opposition to State Question 793, a November ballot initiative that would result in a state constitutional change for the practice of optometry. The OOA specifically opposes the process of using an initiative to change the state constitution as an attempt to influence the delivery of health care.”
The OOA is the second medical organization to recently announce public opposition to SQ 793. The Oklahoma Psychological Association said last week that, “It is not appropriate to allow non-medical corporations like Walmart to limit what procedures a doctor can do, what treatments a doctor can prescribe, or what equipment a doctor can use.”
Dr. Jason Ellen, a Tulsa optometrist, said that SQ 793 would make Oklahoma uniquely unsafe for patients in the amount of power the state gives to corporations to regulate medicine and could have a negative impact on medical care nationwide.
“There is no other state in this country where the Constitution empowers Walmart to define the scope of practice for a doctor or allows Walmart to dictate how a doctor can practice medicine,” said Ellen. “Giving a corporation that kind of control over patient health is just wrong, and it sets a terrible precedent for similar corporate control across the entire country.”
Voters can find more information about the negative impacts of State Question 793 at no793.com.