By Alexandra Harten
On June 21, 2023, the California State Board of Pharmacy voted to approve an action amending section 1706.6 to Title 16, Division 17, Article 2 of the California Code of Regulations regarding Temporary License for Military Spouses. The proposed regulation reflects the Board’s efforts to implement AB 107 (Salas) (Chapter 693, Statutes of 2021), effective July 1, 2023, which required the Board to issue temporary licenses to qualified military spouses and partners under specified conditions. Previously, the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) would issue a temporary license to an applicant who meets certain requirements, such as marriage or in domestic partnership to an active-duty military member who is assigned to California, as well as active licensure in another state, district, or territory of the United States. However, the process for the DCA to issue a temporary license was long, expensive, and onerous for military spouses. Further, the applicants would need to reapply multiple times in certain cases.
According to the initial statement of reasons, the Board of Pharmacy will add section 1706.6 to the CCRs to clarify the provisions the applicant must meet in order to obtain a temporary license. This regulation will expedite the licensure processes, eliminate barriers to employment, and increase the number of licensed healthcare individuals in the pharmacy field in California for military spouses and partners who travel with their partner and are licensed in a state other than California.
On June 8, 2023, the Board published its modified text. The Board originally noticed the proposed amendments in March. [28:2 CRLR 21] At its June 21, 2023, meeting, Board President Seung Oh stated that, having reviewed the materials, including the comments received and staff’s recommendations, he agreed with the recommendations, including the modified text. The present Board members unanimously voted to approve the modified regulation language, initiate a 15-day public comment period, and authorize the Executive Officer to take all steps necessary to complete the rulemaking and adopt the proposed regulation as noticed if no adverse comments were received during that time. According to the notice of modified text, the public comment period ended July 12, 2023. The proposed regulation was not included on the agenda for the Board’s August 30, 2023 or September 12, 2023 meetings. It was submitted to OAL for review on October 18, 2023, and will be approved or denied by December 4, 2023.