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South Bay
      Optometric Society


VETO Senate Bill 230 Banning use of
Optometric Physician/Doctor Title

  • The Florida Senate and the Florida House of Representatives voted on 05/04/2023 that Optometrists can NOT and shall NOT call themselves Doctor or Optometric Physician via SB 230. 

  • Governor DeSantis holds veto power against the bill - he has until June 30 to exercise a veto, otherwise the bill becomes law on July 1, 2023.  The governor must VETO, if he does NOT sign, it will still pass.

  •  The FOA PAC is working to get more information against the bill in Governor DeSantis's hands and organize momentum against the bill. 

What Are The Implications of SB 230 if it Passes?

  •  Optometrists CAN NO LONGER call themselves "Optometric Physicians"

  • If "Optometric Physician" wordage is used in any context, signage or marketing; and will be classified as a class 3 felony if done so.  All current signage must be changed.

  • Insurance carriers may LOWER our reimbursement on payouts, and possibly prevent ODs from getting on certain medical insurance panels in future 

  • ODs are allowed to refer to themselves as Dr. ___ to previous patients, however to new patients, after they introduce themselves as Dr. ___ they must then clarify that they are a doctor of optometry or certified optometrist.  Additionally, ODs can still call themselves Dr. ___ as long as they have a clear name tag identifying themselves as a Doctor of Optometry.

  • If SB 230 passes, a "Phase 2" bill will come out in the next 1-2 years that will further target FL optometrists and their scope of practice. 

This is NOT JUST a Florida problem, but will impact the financial well-being of our entire profession. 


Other states with current “not a doctor” bills proposed:

  • California: AB 765 introduced Feb.13 

  • Connecticut: SB 899 introduced Jan 25 

  • Massachusetts: HD 1314 (H.3606) introduced March 9 

  • Texas: HB 2324 introduced March 9 

  • Wisconsin: SB 143 introduced March 23 

  • North Carolina: HB 576 filed April 5

So what can we do? Make Our Voices Heard!


  1. Call Governor DeSantis's office: if it’s busy they offer a call back: 850-488-7146 or 850-717-9337.  

  2. Email Governor. DeSantis's office

  3. Ask friends, families, patients to email/call Governor DeSantis's office to show their support for ODs!

  4. Support the Florida Optometric Association PAC by donating.


Wednesday, June 7, 2023

5:30pm PDT virtual meeting (1 hr CE)

Importance of Neuroadaptation

Presented by: Dr. Selina McGee, OD


Thursday, June 15, 2023

7:00pm PDT virtual meeting (1 hr CE)

Topic TBD

Presented by: Dr. Amarpreet Brar

Above the Clouds

Tell your state lawmakers to increase Medi-Cal rates now!


The number of Medi-Cal patients is expected by grow by 8% this year.


COA has been advocating for an increase in reimbursement rates as part of the annual budget process.

Lawmakers and the governor are deciding right now how much they will pay for optometric services next year.

Please send a message to your lawmaker in support of this budget item.


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