Governor Brian P. Kemp of Georgia has signed a new law that will come into effect on July 1st, which requires medical specialists to have proper credentials to support their claims. Georgia Senate Bill 197, known as the “Health Care Practitioners Truth and Transparency Act,” mandates that a clinician’s advertising must include their name and the specific license they hold for the services they provide.

Furthermore, the law prohibits non-physicians from using the title “doctor” in clinical settings. Advanced practice nurses and physician assistants with doctorates who identify themselves as “doctors” must specify in their advertising that they are not medical doctors or physicians. Any clinician found in violation of the new law risks disciplinary action from their respective professional credentialing boards.

Michael W. Champeau, MD, FAAP, FASA, president of the American Society of Anesthesiologists, is a strong advocate of the new law, stating that it “makes it clearer for patients to make informed decisions because they know the qualifications of the professional providing their care.” Champeau further adds that “every patient deserves to be certain of exactly who is performing and responsible for their care during a procedure or surgery.”