Medical Marijuana Issue in Florida: One Big Pot Hole

On August 29, 2013, the Federal Department of Justice issued a memorandum stating it will continue to rely on state and local authorities to address marijuana activity through enforcement of state narcotics laws. Nevertheless, in light of new state laws allowing for possession of a small amounts of marijuana and regulating production, processing and sale of marijuana, the Department designated eight criteria to guide state law enforcement. States must (1) prevent the distribution of marijuana to minors; (2) prevent revenue from the sale of marijuana from flowing to criminal enterprises; (3) prevent the diversion of marijuana from states where it is legal to states where it is illegal; (4) prevent marijuana activity from being used as a cover for the trafficking of other illegal drugs; (5) prevent violence and the use of firearms in the cultivation and distribution of marijuana; (6) prevent drugged driving and the exacerbation of other adverse public health consequences associated with marijuana use; (7) prevent the growth of marijuana on public lands; and (8) prevent marijuana possession or use on federal property. In the event that the Federal Government determines that States are not adhering to such criteria, the Federal Government reserves its right to challenge State laws. The Feds didn’t say how any of that was to be done. They simply said the states should do that. But Florida has apparently been looking the other way.

 

Mandatory Signs for Music Festivals

A music festival is an event of joy and festivity. Hundreds of die-hard music fans throng such festivals in the hope of indulging their passion for music. As an organizer, it is your biggest challenge to keep such an event safe, systematic and hassle free for both the participants and the attendees. After all, a musical festival or any such events where hundreds gather together is a potential site for stampede or other unfortunate accidents. Proper mandatory signs at appropriate locations are therefore compulsory in order to guide people on how to move about safely and what to do (or not do) so that the entire festival goes off smoothly.

What is a Mandatory Sign?

Mandatory signs are standard safety signs commonly seen on roads and other public places. Unlike prohibitory signs, mandatory signs tell you what to do rather than what not to do. Most mandatory signs use pictograms or symbols to depict their message so that everybody can understand their meaning irrespective of the language. Sometimes, text is also used in conjunction with the images. Commonly, a mandatory sign comprises a white colored symbol on a circular blue background.

Importance of a Mandatory Sign at a Musical Festival

Musical festivals are for the young and the young-at-heart. People from all walks of life come together during such festivals for a few days of unfettered fun and frolic. Unfortunately, such an event is also a hotbed of chaos and unruly behavior. With so many people around, it is not possible for everybody to move about in an orderly manner or to remember public etiquette. Different types of mandatory signages with different messages therefore guide people in the right direction. Without such signs, chances are people will lose their way or hurt themselves in all that confusion.

 

 

Wash Your Hands Warning Signs Are Important

It is common knowledge that we are surrounded by germs of all kinds that have a profound effect on our individual health and the health of society at large.. People typically pick up germs from the surroundings during the course of myriad actions; the most common of which is through touch. Yes, touching dirty surfaces or objects or even an unclean person is often the surest way of transmitting germs from one person to another. That is why washing your hands thoroughly is considered as your first line of defence against being infected by germs. In fact, there are plenty of warning signs all around that urge you to comply so that you can stay safe and healthy.

Importance of Washing your Hands

Something so trivial can influence the quality of your life and professional career. It is through touch that you expose yourself to different infectious germs commonly found in your surroundings. And if you don’t do it properly, you can gradually become susceptible to several acute and chronic ailments such as hepatitis A, infectious diarrhoea, bronchitis, influenza or even the common cold. Understandably, you will fall sick often and this will definitely affect your personal and professional life. That is why it is so important for you to recognize; understand and follow the different warning signs on hand washing commonly seen all around us.

Signs at Offices and Workplace

Infections and illnesses resulting from them is one of the prime causes of absenteeism among employees and a dipping profit margin for the owner. Although regular maintenance does keep the surroundings clean, the onus still lies on you to follow personal hygiene. That is why signs are commonly seen in workplaces to make workers aware of its importance. Signs such as ‘Do Not Enter /Leave this Room without Washing Your Hands’ are also installed at the entrance of areas which contain hazardous materials. Sign such as ‘Employees Please Wash and Sanitize Your Hands Before Returning to Work’ is also seen in factories where it is absolutely necessary to maintain a clean and sanitized environment.

 

Federation’s Model Telemedicine Policy Is Well Timed

Many health policy experts are betting on the expanded role of telemedicine as an essential cost-saving, quality (and access) enhancing tool. Yet legal and policy issues have dogged the development of useful telemedicine guidelines, making it difficult to know what’s OK and what’s not. What sort of licensure is required for physicians practicing telemedicine? When is the physician “practicing medicine” vs. “merely consulting?” When is a physician patient relationship established? Is one even necessary? The newly developed model policy developed by the Federation of State Medical Boards should help guide states in developing specific telemedicine standards.

Federation Guidance

The model policy adopted by the Federation provides the following core guidance-

- It defines telemedicine as “the practice of medicine using electronic communication, information technology or other means of interaction between a licensee on one location and a patient in another location with or without an intervening provider.”

- It states that it is not intended to alter existing state-based scope of practice or standards of care.

- It supports the notion that a physician patient relationship must be established in the context of telemedicine, including for instance taking a patient history.

The devil, of course, is in the details. The Federation notes, for instance, that it may be tough to pin point the start of the physician patient relationship, but is clear that the relationship is in fact commenced once the “physician agrees to undertake diagnosis and treatment of the patient, and the patient agrees to be treated, whether or not there has been an encounter in person between the physician (or other appropriately supervised health care practitioner) and patient.” Emphasis added. While the model policy skirts the issue of “treating vs. advising,” comments seem to indicate that “when in doubt, assume such a relationship has been established,” presumably with attendant licensure requirements and liability.

As far as licensure goes, the Federation thinks licensure should be required in the state where the patient is located (as opposed to where the physician is located). State laws need to be considered, however, since many will also likely require licensure in the state where the physician is located.

Telemedicine based prescribing protocols have long dogged many physicians. The hormone replacement industry, for instance, has often worked without proper clarity on this issue. Though the Federation policy is clear that prescribing “based solely on an online questionnaire, does not constitute an acceptable level of care,” physicians will have to refer to state law for more specific guidance.

 

Radio Equipment Directive 2014/53/EU

History

The current R&TTE Directive, 1999/5/EC, came into force on 7 April 2000 and replaced a combination of national Radio Spectrum Requirements for transmitters and directive 98/12/EC for Telecommunication Terminal Equipment.

The Radio Equipment Directive

The text of the Radio Equipment Directive (RED) was adopted at its first reading by the EU Parliament on 13th March 2014, by the EU Council on 14th April and published as Directive 2014/53/EU on 22 May.

The RED has four main objectives:

 

  • To reinforce obligations of economic operators (manufacturers and distributors) and improve tools available to enforcement authorities
  • To clarify and simplify the scope
  • To modify and reduce some of the current administrative burdens on manufacturers that do not add much value
  • To add option for future Delegated Acts should they be required.

 

The Scope has changed:

 

  • “Radio Determination” equipment, which was always covered, is not explicitly included
  • Sound and TV broadcast receivers are now included
  • “Receiver Performance” has been made part of the Directive, where before it was just part of various Harmonised Standards
  • The lower frequency limit of 9 kHz has been removed.

 

The Essential Requirements now include requirement to support the effective use of the radio spectrum. There is also a placeholder for making common chargers for mobile phones mandatory.

What do manufacturers of existing R&TTE product need to do?

At the moment – “not a lot” as there are a number of issues to be resolved first:

November 2014: The commission will hold a workshop focusing on issues relating to legal transposition into national law with the intent that a set of “Frequently Asked Questions” and/or Transpositional guidelines will be produced.

Q2 2015: possibly a 2nd Commission workshop

Existing equipment may continue to be placed on the market in accordance with existing requirements for R&TTE or EMC+LVD Directives until 13 June 2017.

The RED will apply to all “new” equipment from 12 June 2016.

A manufacturer cannot declare compliance with a Directive until it has been implemented into National Law by at least one member state (it doesn’t matter which one). Member states are unlikely to start this process until clear guidance has been produced by the Commission Workshop(s).

What should manufacturers of Sound and TV broadcast receivers do?

You will, in due course, need to comply with the RED, and specifically Radio Spectrum Requirements. Whilst these have not yet been defined, new standards will be produced by ETSI, and are likely to include the following “Essential Requirement” which are the current requirement for receivers operating in the 25-1000 MHz band as laid down in EN 300 220.

 

  • Receiver Spurious Emissions
  • Receiver Blocking