Bill S2900-2013

Requires mandatory continuing education for mental health practioners

Requires thirty-six hours of mandatory continuing education for mental health practitioners during each triennial registration period; makes related provisions.

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  • Jan 8, 2014: REFERRED TO HIGHER EDUCATION
  • Jan 24, 2013: REFERRED TO HIGHER EDUCATION

Memo

BILL NUMBER:S2900

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the education law, in relation to mandatory continuing education for mental health practitioners and clarifies authorization to practice

PURPOSE: The purposes of this bill are twofold. First, it requires each mental health counselor, marriage and family therapist, psychoanalyst and creative arts therapist licensed in New York to undergo mandatory continuing education. Second, it amends the definitions of these professions to clarify that these individuals are qualified to diagnose within the practice of each profession.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: The education law is amended from section 8402 to section 8405 to include and define diagnosis within the practices of mental health counseling, marriage and family therapy, psychoanalysis and creative arts therapy.

Additionally, the education law is amended by adding a new section, 8412.

§ 8412-1:

(a): Requires that each licensed mental health counselor, marriage and family therapist, psychoanalyst, and creative arts therapist in New York complete continuing education during each triennial registration. These professionals must be issued a registration certificate to continue practicing, unless a conditional registration certificate is issued to them.

(b): Exempts continuing education requirements for the initial triennial registration period and allows for adjustments for reasons of health, extended active duty with the U.S. armed forces, or for other good cause.

(c): Those not engaged in practice, as determined by the department, shall be exempt from the continuing education requirement upon the filing of a statement with the department. Licensees who return to practice shall notify the department prior to reentering and shall meet all education requirements.

§8412-2: -Requires that thirty-six hours of acceptable formal continuing education, as specified in §8412-4, be completed each triennial registration period, with a maximum of twelve hours being self-instructional course work. -Continuing education hours taken during one triennium are non-transferable.

§ 8412-3: -Authorizes the department to issue conditional registrations, for up to one year, to licensees failing to meet the continuing education requirements. Licensees who are denied registration and who continue to practice may be subject to disciplinary proceedings.

§ 8412-4: -Defines "acceptable formal continuing education" as used in § 8412-2.

§ 8412-5: -Requires counselors, psychoanalysts and therapists to maintain documentation of completion of "acceptable formal continuing education". Failure to provide documentation to the department upon request shall constitute misconduct subject to discipline.

§ 8412-6:

-Sets forth the mandatory continuing education fee of forty-five dollars, to be payable on or before the first day of each triennial registration period.

JUSTIFICATION: In February 2012, The State Education Department's Mental Health practitioner Board released a report noting the need to amend the scopes of the Education Law Article 163 professions to clarify that these individuals are qualified to "diagnose" within the practice of each profession. These professions include mental health counselors, marriage and family therapists, creative arts therapists and psychoanalysts. The lack of the specific term "diagnosis" in the scope of practices for each of these professions has led some to conclude that these professions may not diagnose in New York. This conclusion does not conform with evidence in both the statute and the implementing regulations that support the professions authority to diagnose.

This bill remedies this problem by adding and defining the authorization to diagnosis within the scope of each of the Article 163 professions.

In addition, as the professions grow, it becomes increasingly important for licensees to maintain connected to best practices. Requiring continuing education for practitioners in these professions ensures that New York residents receive care from licensed professionals who are well informed about current and relevant practices in their fields.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2012 Referred to Higher Education

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: To be determined.

EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately; provided, however, section one of this act shall take effect June 30, 2014. Effective immediately upon the passage of this bill, the state education department is authorized to complete the addition, amendment and/or repeal of any rule of regulation necessary for the implementation of this act on its effective date.


Text

STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 2900 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE January 24, 2013 ___________
Introduced by Sen. ROBACH -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Higher Education AN ACT to amend the education law, in relation to mandatory continuing education for mental health practitioners and clarifies authorization to practice THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. The education law is amended by adding a new section 8412 to read as follows: S 8412. MANDATORY CONTINUING EDUCATION. 1. REQUIREMENT OF CONTINUING EDUCATION. (A) EACH LICENSED MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELOR, MARRIAGE AND FAMILY THERA- PIST, PSYCHOANALYST, AND CREATIVE ARTS THERAPIST REQUIRED UNDER THIS ARTICLE TO REGISTER TRIENNIALLY WITH THE DEPARTMENT TO PRACTICE IN THE STATE SHALL COMPLY WITH THE PROVISIONS OF THE MANDATORY CONTINUING EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS PRESCRIBED IN SUBDIVISION TWO OF THIS SECTION EXCEPT AS SET FORTH IN PARAGRAPHS (B) AND (C) OF THIS SUBDIVISION. LICENSED MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELORS, MARRIAGE AND FAMILY THERAPISTS, PSYCHOANALYSTS AND CREATIVE ARTS THERAPISTS WHO DO NOT SATISFY THE MANDATORY CONTINUING EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS SHALL NOT PRACTICE UNTIL THEY HAVE MET SUCH REQUIREMENTS, AND THEY HAVE BEEN ISSUED A REGISTRA- TION CERTIFICATE, EXCEPT THAT A LICENSED MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELOR, MARRIAGE AND FAMILY THERAPIST, PSYCHOANALYST, AND CREATIVE ARTS THERA- PIST MAY PRACTICE WITHOUT HAVING MET SUCH REQUIREMENTS IF HE OR SHE IS ISSUED A CONDITIONAL REGISTRATION CERTIFICATE PURSUANT TO SUBDIVISION THREE OF THIS SECTION. (B) EACH LICENSED MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELOR, MARRIAGE AND FAMILY THERA- PIST, PSYCHOANALYST, AND CREATIVE ARTS THERAPIST SHALL BE EXEMPT FROM THE MANDATORY CONTINUING EDUCATION REQUIREMENT FOR THE TRIENNIAL REGIS- TRATION PERIOD DURING WHICH THEY ARE FIRST LICENSED. IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE INTENT OF THIS SECTION, ADJUSTMENT TO THE MANDATORY CONTINUING
EDUCATION REQUIREMENT MAY BE GRANTED BY THE DEPARTMENT FOR REASONS OF HEALTH CERTIFIED BY AN APPROPRIATE HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONAL, FOR EXTENDED ACTIVE DUTY WITH THE ARMED FORCES OF THE UNITED STATES, OR FOR OTHER GOOD CAUSE ACCEPTABLE TO THE DEPARTMENT WHICH MAY PREVENT COMPLI- ANCE. (C) A LICENSED MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELOR, MARRIAGE AND FAMILY THERAPIST, PSYCHOANALYST, AND CREATIVE ARTS THERAPIST NOT ENGAGED IN PRACTICE, AS DETERMINED BY THE DEPARTMENT, SHALL BE EXEMPT FROM THE MANDATORY CONTIN- UING EDUCATION REQUIREMENT UPON THE FILING OF A STATEMENT WITH THE DEPARTMENT DECLARING SUCH STATUS. ANY LICENSEE WHO RETURNS TO THE PRAC- TICE OF MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELING, MARRIAGE AND FAMILY THERAPY, PSYCHO- ANALYSIS, OR CREATIVE ARTS THERAPY DURING THE TRIENNIAL REGISTRATION PERIOD SHALL NOTIFY THE DEPARTMENT PRIOR TO REENTERING THE PROFESSION AND SHALL MEET SUCH MANDATORY EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS AS SHALL BE PRESCRIBED BY REGULATIONS OF THE COMMISSIONER. 2. DURING EACH TRIENNIAL REGISTRATION PERIOD AN APPLICANT FOR REGIS- TRATION AS A LICENSED MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELOR, MARRIAGE AND FAMILY THER- APIST, PSYCHOANALYST, AND CREATIVE ARTS THERAPIST SHALL COMPLETE A MINI- MUM OF THIRTY-SIX HOURS OF ACCEPTABLE FORMAL CONTINUING EDUCATION AS SPECIFIED IN SUBDIVISION FOUR OF THIS SECTION, A MAXIMUM OF TWELVE HOURS OF WHICH MAY BE SELF-INSTRUCTIONAL COURSE WORK ACCEPTABLE TO THE DEPART- MENT. ANY LICENSED MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELOR, MARRIAGE AND FAMILY THERA- PIST, PSYCHOANALYST, AND CREATIVE ARTS THERAPIST WHOSE FIRST REGISTRA- TION DATE FOLLOWING THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THIS SECTION OCCURS LESS THAN THREE YEARS FROM SUCH EFFECTIVE DATE, BUT ON OR AFTER JUNE THIRTIETH, TWO THOUSAND FOURTEEN, SHALL COMPLETE CONTINUING EDUCATION HOURS ON A PRORATED BASIS AT THE RATE OF ONE-HALF HOUR PER MONTH FOR THE PERIOD BEGINNING JUNE THIRTIETH, TWO THOUSAND FOURTEEN UP TO THE FIRST REGIS- TRATION DATE THEREAFTER. A LICENSEE WHO HAS NOT SATISFIED THE MANDATORY CONTINUING EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS SHALL NOT BE ISSUED A TRIENNIAL REGIS- TRATION CERTIFICATE BY THE DEPARTMENT AND SHALL NOT PRACTICE UNLESS AND UNTIL A CONDITIONAL REGISTRATION CERTIFICATE IS ISSUED AS PROVIDED FOR IN SUBDIVISION THREE OF THIS SECTION. CONTINUING EDUCATION HOURS TAKEN DURING ONE TRIENNIUM MAY NOT BE TRANSFERRED TO A SUBSEQUENT TRIENNIUM. 3. THE DEPARTMENT, IN ITS DISCRETION, MAY ISSUE A CONDITIONAL REGIS- TRATION TO A LICENSEE WHO FAILS TO MEET THE CONTINUING EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS ESTABLISHED IN SUBDIVISION TWO OF THIS SECTION BUT WHO AGREES TO MAKE UP ANY DEFICIENCIES AND COMPLETE ANY ADDITIONAL EDUCATION WHICH THE DEPARTMENT MAY REQUIRE. THE FEE FOR SUCH A CONDITIONAL REGIS- TRATION SHALL BE THE SAME AS, AND IN ADDITION TO, THE FEE FOR THE TRIEN- NIAL REGISTRATION. THE DURATION OF SUCH CONDITIONAL REGISTRATION SHALL BE DETERMINED BY THE DEPARTMENT BUT SHALL NOT EXCEED ONE YEAR. ANY LICENSEE WHO IS NOTIFIED OF THE DENIAL OF REGISTRATION FOR FAILURE TO SUBMIT EVIDENCE, SATISFACTORY TO THE DEPARTMENT, OF REQUIRED CONTINUING EDUCATION AND WHO PRACTICES WITHOUT SUCH REGISTRATION MAY BE SUBJECT TO DISCIPLINARY PROCEEDINGS PURSUANT TO SECTION SIXTY-FIVE HUNDRED TEN OF THIS TITLE. 4. AS USED IN SUBDIVISION TWO OF THIS SECTION, "ACCEPTABLE FORMAL CONTINUING EDUCATION" SHALL MEAN FORMAL COURSES OF LEARNING WHICH CONTRIBUTE TO PROFESSIONAL PRACTICE IN MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELING, MARRIAGE AND FAMILY THERAPY, PSYCHOANALYSIS, OR CREATIVE ARTS THERAPY AND WHICH MEET THE STANDARDS PRESCRIBED BY REGULATIONS OF THE COMMIS- SIONER. SUCH FORMAL COURSES OF LEARNING SHALL INCLUDE, BUT NOT BE LIMIT- ED TO, COLLEGIATE LEVEL CREDIT AND NON-CREDIT COURSES, PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMS AND TECHNICAL SESSIONS OFFERED BY NATIONAL, STATE AND LOCAL PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS AND OTHER ORGANIZATIONS ACCEPTABLE
TO THE DEPARTMENT, AND ANY OTHER ORGANIZED EDUCATIONAL AND TECHNICAL PROGRAMS ACCEPTABLE TO THE DEPARTMENT. THE DEPARTMENT MAY, IN ITS DISCRETION AND AS NEEDED TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE HEALTH AND WELFARE OF THE PUBLIC, REQUIRE THE COMPLETION OF CONTINUING EDUCATION COURSES IN SPECIFIC SUBJECTS TO FULFILL THIS MANDATORY CONTINUING EDUCATION REQUIREMENT. COURSES MUST BE TAKEN FROM A SPONSOR APPROVED BY THE DEPARTMENT, PURSUANT TO THE REGULATIONS OF THE COMMISSIONER. 5. LICENSED MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELORS, MARRIAGE AND FAMILY THERAPISTS, PSYCHOANALYSTS, AND CREATIVE ARTS THERAPISTS SHALL MAINTAIN ADEQUATE DOCUMENTATION OF COMPLETION OF ACCEPTABLE FORMAL CONTINUING EDUCATION AND SHALL PROVIDE SUCH DOCUMENTATION AT THE REQUEST OF THE DEPARTMENT. FAILURE TO PROVIDE SUCH DOCUMENTATION UPON THE REQUEST OF THE DEPARTMENT SHALL BE AN ACT OF MISCONDUCT SUBJECT TO DISCIPLINARY PROCEEDINGS PURSU- ANT TO SECTION SIXTY-FIVE HUNDRED TEN OF THIS TITLE. 6. THE MANDATORY CONTINUING EDUCATION FEE SHALL BE FORTY-FIVE DOLLARS, SHALL BE PAYABLE ON OR BEFORE THE FIRST DAY OF EACH TRIENNIAL REGISTRA- TION PERIOD, AND SHALL BE PAID IN ADDITION TO THE TRIENNIAL REGISTRATION FEE REQUIRED BY SECTION SIXTY-SEVEN HUNDRED THIRTY-FOUR OF THIS CHAPTER. S 2. Subdivision 1 of section 8402 of the education law, as added by chapter 676 of the laws of 2002, is amended to read as follows: 1. Definition of the practice of mental health counseling. The prac- tice of the profession of mental health counseling is defined as: (a) the evaluation, assessment, DIAGNOSIS, amelioration, treatment, modification, or adjustment to a disability, problem, or disorder of behavior, character, development, emotion, personality or relationships by the use of verbal or behavioral methods with individuals, couples, families or groups in private practice, group, or organized settings; [and] (b) the use of assessment instruments and mental health counseling and psychotherapy to identify, evaluate, DIAGNOSE and treat dysfunctions and disorders for purposes of providing appropriate mental health counseling services; AND (C) DIAGNOSIS IN THE CONTEXT OF LICENSED MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELING PRACTICE IS THE PROCESS OF DISTINGUISHING BETWEEN SIMILAR MENTAL, EMOTIONAL, BEHAVIORAL, DEVELOPMENTAL, AND ADDICTIVE DISORDERS, IMPAIR- MENTS AND DISABILITIES WITHIN A PSYCHOSOCIAL FRAMEWORK ON THE BASIS OF THEIR SIMILAR AND UNIQUE CHARACTERISTICS CONSISTENT WITH ACCEPTED CLAS- SIFICATION SYSTEMS. S 3. Subdivision 1 of section 8403 of the education law, as added by chapter 676 of the laws of 2002, is amended to read as follows: 1. Definition of the practice of marriage and family therapy. The practice of the profession of marriage and family therapy is defined as: (a) the assessment, DIAGNOSIS and treatment of nervous and mental disorders, whether affective, cognitive or behavioral, which results in dysfunctional interpersonal family relationships including, but not limited to familial relationships, marital/couple relationships, parent-child relationships, pre-marital and other personal relation- ships; (b) the use of mental health counseling, psychotherapy and therapeutic techniques to evaluate and treat marital, relational, and family systems, and individuals in relationship to these systems; (c) the use of mental health counseling and psychotherapeutic tech- niques to treat mental, emotional and behavioral disorders and ailments within the context of marital, relational and family systems to prevent and ameliorate dysfunction; [and]
(d) the use of assessment instruments and mental health counseling and psychotherapy to identify [and], evaluate, DIAGNOSE AND TREAT dysfunc- tions and disorders for purposes of providing appropriate marriage and family therapy services; AND (E) DIAGNOSIS IN THE CONTEXT OF LICENSED MARRIAGE AND FAMILY THERAPY PRACTICE IS THE PROCESS OF DISTINGUISHING BETWEEN SIMILAR MENTAL, EMOTIONAL, BEHAVIORAL, DEVELOPMENTAL, AND ADDICTIVE DISORDERS, IMPAIR- MENTS AND DISABILITIES WITHIN A PSYCHOSOCIAL FRAMEWORK ON THE BASIS OF THEIR SIMILAR AND UNIQUE CHARACTERISTICS CONSISTENT WITH ACCEPTED CLAS- SIFICATION SYSTEMS. S 4. Subdivision 1 of section 8404 of the education law, as added by chapter 676 of the laws of 2002, is amended to read as follows: 1. Definition of the practice of creative arts therapy. The practice of the profession of creative arts therapy is defined as: (a) the assessment, evaluation, DIAGNOSIS and the therapeutic inter- vention and treatment, which may be either primary, parallel or adjunc- tive, of mental, emotional, developmental and behavioral disorders through the use of the arts as approved by the department; [and] (b) the use of assessment instruments and mental health counseling and psychotherapy to identify, evaluate, DIAGNOSE and treat dysfunctions and disorders for purposes of providing appropriate creative arts therapy services; AND (C) DIAGNOSIS IN THE CONTEXT OF LICENSED CREATIVE ARTS THERAPY PRAC- TICE IS THE PROCESS OF DISTINGUISHING BETWEEN SIMILAR MENTAL, EMOTIONAL, BEHAVIORAL, DEVELOPMENTAL, AND ADDICTIVE DISORDERS, IMPAIRMENTS AND DISABILITIES WITHIN A PSYCHOSOCIAL FRAMEWORK ON THE BASIS OF THEIR SIMI- LAR AND UNIQUE CHARACTERISTICS CONSISTENT WITH ACCEPTED CLASSIFICATION SYSTEMS. S 5. Subdivision 1 of section 8405 of the education law, as added by chapter 676 of the laws of 2002, is amended to read as follows: 1. Definition of the practice of psychoanalysis. The practice of the profession of psychoanalysis is defined as: (a) the observation, description, evaluation, [and] interpretation, DIAGNOSIS AND TREATMENT of dynamic unconscious mental processes that contribute to the formation of personality and behavior in order to identify and resolve unconscious psychic problems which affect interper- sonal relationships and emotional development, to facilitate changes in personality and behavior through the use of verbal and nonverbal cogni- tive and emotional communication, and to develop adaptive functioning; [and] (b) the use of assessment instruments and mental health counseling and psychotherapy to identify, evaluate, DIAGNOSE and treat dysfunctions and disorders for purposes of providing appropriate psychoanalytic services; AND (C) DIAGNOSIS IN THE CONTEXT OF LICENSED PSYCHOANALYSIS PRACTICE IS THE PROCESS OF DISTINGUISHING BETWEEN SIMILAR MENTAL, EMOTIONAL, BEHAV- IORAL, DEVELOPMENTAL, AND ADDICTIVE DISORDERS, IMPAIRMENTS AND DISABILI- TIES WITHIN A PSYCHOSOCIAL FRAMEWORK ON THE BASIS OF THEIR SIMILAR AND UNIQUE CHARACTERISTICS CONSISTENT WITH ACCEPTED CLASSIFICATION SYSTEMS. S 6. This act shall take effect immediately; provided, however, section one of this act shall take effect June 30, 2014. Effective imme- diately, the addition, amendment and/or repeal of any rule or regulation necessary for the implementation of this act on its effective date are authorized and directed to be made and completed by the state education department.

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