American Osteopathic Association

Advancing the distinctive philosophy and practice of osteopathic medicine

Scope of Practice Partnership

The AOA is a steering committee member of the Scope of Practice Partnership (SOPP). The SOPP was formed in 2006 to challenge inappropriate scope of practice expansions, such as those that are not commensurate with a non-physician provider group’s education and training.   

The goals of the partnership are consistent with AOA policy to protect patient safety by supporting the “team” approach to medical care. The physician-led, team-based medical model ensures that professionals with complete medical education and training are adequately involved in patient care. While we value the contributions of non-physician clinicians to the health care delivery system, we believe any expansion of their authority to provide services to patients without appropriate oversight should be directly related to additional education, training and competency demonstration requirements. This assures patient safety and the delivery of high quality health care.​

The SOPP produces valuable materials such as education modules on several non-physician clinician groups, GeoMaps that provide data on where physicians and non-physicians are practicing in all 50 states and other research such as surveys and white papers. Membership for state affiliates is free, and more than 30 AOA state affiliates have already joined.​

SOPP Members: Log in to view additional materials.