Skip directly to search Skip directly to A to Z list Skip directly to navigation Skip directly to site content Skip directly to page options
CDC Home
Error processing SSI file

Law: Physical Exam Required

What are Physical Exam Laws?

Laws that require a physical exam of a patient by a health care provider prior to prescribing may be intended, in part, to prevent inappropriate prescribing of controlled substances. A law was included in this resource if it requires either examining the patient or obtaining a patient history and performing a patient evaluation prior to prescribing a controlled substance or if it requires a bona fide patient-physician relationship that is elsewhere defined in statute or regulation to include a physician examination.

States with Physical Exam Laws

This map depicts the 42 states with physical exam laws that is in the list below. AK HI CA OR ID NV AZ ND CO TX OK MN IA MO AR LA MS AL FL SC TN NC KY VA WV WI MI IL IN OH PA NY CT DC DE MA NH NJ RI VT KS NM

42 States: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin

Note: All laws enacted as of August 31, 2010.

Features of Physical Exam Requirement Laws by State

Features

Aspects of Feature

States

Type of examination required

"Physical examination" (may also include "in person" or its equivalent)

AL, AZ, AR, CT, DE, FL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MI, MS, MO, NV, NH, NJ, NM, NY, NC, ND, OH, OR, PA, RI, SC, TN, TX, VT, VA, WI

"Appropriate examination" (or some approximation)

CA, KY, OK

Type of examination/evaluation is not specified

AK, CO, ID, MN, TX

Circumstances under which
examination is required                             

 

For all drugs or all controlled substances

AL, AZ, AR, CO, CT, DC, FL, HI, ID, IL, IN, IA, KY, LA, MA, MS, MO, NV, NH, NJ, NM, NY, NC, OH, OK, OR, PA, SC, TN, TX, VA, WV

Only for "pain management"

LA, NM, OH, TN, TX

For specific controlled substances, specific schedules, or to treat specific disorder

AK, CA, CO, DE, IN, KS, MI, MN, NV, NM, OH, OR, RI, TX, VT, VA, WI

Under other circumstances

KY, ND, RI, VA

Consequences of prescribing or
dispensing without a physical exam
or a practitioner-patient relationship

 

Constitutes unprofessional conduct punishable by licensing board

AL, AZ, CA, DE, MI, NV, NH, OH, OK, OR, SC, TN, WI

License/application will be revoked/rejected

FL, TN

Explicitly lists criminal liability

KY, LA, VA

Licensing board will report to the attorney general

AR

Role of the practitioner-patient relationship

 

 

Examination requirement is part of definition of practitioner-patient relationship

AK, AZ, AR, FL, ID, KY, LA, MS, MO, NV, NH, NM, OH, SC, VT, VA

Physical exam not necessary for previously established patient

AL, AK, AZ, MN, TN

Pharmacist may not dispense if reason to believe there is no practitioner-patient relationship

AL, CO, DC, FL, HI, ID, IL, IA, LA, MA, MS, MO, NH, NM, NC, OK, OR, TX, VA, WV

Patient may not seek to obtain controlled substance without valid practitioner-patient relationship

KY, NH

Practitioner-patient relationship is noted but undefined

AL, CO, CT, DC, DE, HI, IL, IA, MA, NC, OK, OR, TX, WV

Enumerates exceptions where
physical exam may not be necessary

 N/A

AL, AZ, AR, CA, IN, MN, NH, NM, NY, NC, OH, PA, SC, TN, TX, VA, WV

Explicit provision dealing with
prescribing based solely on patient
questionnaire (or internet pharmacy)

  N/A

AL, AR, CA, CO, CT, DE, ID, IA, LA, MS, MO, NH, NM, ND, OR, TN, TX, VA, WV

Time requirement

  N/A

NV, TX

 

 
Contact Us:
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
    National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (NCIPC)
    4770 Buford Hwy, NE
    MS F-63
    Atlanta, GA 30341-3717
  • 800-CDC-INFO
    (800-232-4636)
    TTY: (888) 232-6348
  • Contact CDC–INFO
USA.gov: The U.S. Government's Official Web PortalDepartment of Health and Human Services
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention   1600 Clifton Road Atlanta, GA 30329-4027, USA
800-CDC-INFO (800-232-4636) TTY: (888) 232-6348 - Contact CDC–INFO
A-Z Index
  1. A
  2. B
  3. C
  4. D
  5. E
  6. F
  7. G
  8. H
  9. I
  10. J
  11. K
  12. L
  13. M
  14. N
  15. O
  16. P
  17. Q
  18. R
  19. S
  20. T
  21. U
  22. V
  23. W
  24. X
  25. Y
  26. Z
  27. #