Monday, June 6, 2011

Lawmaker Requests Temporary Licensing of Doctors Displaced by Joplin Tornado

Rep. Doug Cox
State Rep. Doug Cox called on Gov. Mary Fallin last week to issue a directive that would allow physicians displaced by the Joplin tornado to obtain temporary Oklahoma medical licenses free of charge so they can see and treat their patients in Northeast Oklahoma facilities.

Cox (R-Grove), who is an emergency room physician and the medical director at the Integris Grove hospital, said Missouri patients are coming to both the Integris Grove and Miami hospitals because they cannot get in to see their regular physician. The two hospitals took on numerous victims of the tornado, he said.

“The Joplin tornado destroyed medical facilities and offices, making it impossible for patients to see their doctors,” Cox (R-Grove) said. “We’ve been seeing patients in our emergency room for everything from routine care to prescription refills. I think that it is imperative that we do what we can to help these displaced doctors and their patients. Arkansas and Kansas have already taken this step and I would like to see Oklahoma step up to the plate as well.”

Cox praised Fallin for issuing a state of emergency, which allowed pharmacies to refill non-narcotic prescriptions for 30 days without doctor authorization.

“I would like to thank Governor Fallin for the action she has already taken,” Cox said. “Integris Grove is standing by to help these doctors and patients in any way we can. I hope the governor will take this next step, so that we can do more to help out the people of Missouri in any way we can. I am sure they would do the same for us.”
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