NCSB Newsletter

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Spring 2017

PRESIDENT’S CORNER

BY: Alison Lemke

Greetings NCSB member states and individuals, as well as those whose states are not NCSB members but who are interested in licensure and regulatory issues in audiology and speech-language pathology. 2017 is NCSB’s 30thanniversary year, and we remain the go-to organization for in-depth discussion of hot topics in speech-language pathology and audiology licensure. We invite you and/or your state to join us if you aren’t currently a member--we are sure you and your board will benefit from becoming involved.

NCSB conferences offer information on many licensure related topics and the opportunity to network with people from all over the U.S. who are involved in licensure. Speaking of hot topics, the October 2016 NCSB conference in Santa Fe, New Mexico, buzzed with discussion related to the current hottest topic in licensure circles-- license portability. Simply defined, license portability is a regulatory arrangement for health professionals to practice in states other than the ‘home state’ in which they are licensed. NCSB conference attendees spent considerable time discussing portability for SLP and audiology, with strong support expressed for the concept. Several state representatives reported that their boards are ready to act on this issue in the near future.

Most stakeholders also reported support for portability for both in-person practice and telepractice across state borders. Concern for consumer protection was expressed by many, with attendees stating that elements such as the reporting of misconduct, disciplinary processes and sanctions, CE requirements, and timely, efficient sharing of information between states need to be carefully considered.

Because of NCSB stakeholders’ interest in moving forward on this issue, NCSB has initiated several actions. Past-President Kerri Phillips will report elsewhere in this issue on what has happened since October.

This fall, the NCSB 30th anniversary conference will take place in New Orleans, Louisiana, on September 14-16. New Orleans was the site of the first NCSB conference, and we are excited to celebrate our anniversary there. President-Elect Vickie Pullins and the NCSB Board of Directors are already working hard to present yet another fun and informative conference. The latest updates about progress in the area of license portability are something we can all look forward to. We hope to see you there!

Respectfully,

Alison Lemke
NCSB President

 

INSIDE THIS ISSUE

PRESIDENTS CORNER - See above

NCSB: STATE COMPACTS - See Below

NCSB SOLICITS NOMINATIONS FOR AWARDS

CALL FOR NOMINATIONS

MEMBERSHIP IN NCSB

NCSB WELCOMES TRACY GRAMMER

NCSB PRESENTS POSTER SESSION AT ASHA

29th ANNUAL CONFERENCE HELD IN SANTA FE

30th ANNUAL CONFERENCE TO BE HELD IN NEW ORLEANS

NCSB REPRESENTED AT AuD EDUCATION SUMMIT

SPOTLIGHT ON GEORGIA BOARD

NCSB MEMBERS PRESENT AT CSAP

JOIN NCSB ON FACEBOOK

NCSB SOLICITS YOUR OPINIONS

NCSB Board of Directors

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NCSB: STATE COMPACTS

The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) is contracting with the Council of State Governments (CSG) and working in collaboration with NCSB to develop and implement interstate compacts for audiologists and speech-language pathologists. In December 2016, the NCSB Board of Directors voted to fund attendance of one of the BOD at the Council of State Governments Summit of the States in Williamsburg, VA. The purpose of attendance was to gather a better understanding of state compacts and how they could be used by licensing boards.
Also in December 2016, a phone conference was held in conjunction with CSG, ASHA, and NCSB as well as other stakeholders to discuss the purpose of state compacts for the professions of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology. As an overview of a state compact, the following questions have been posed by the membership of NCSB.

What is the role of ASHA and NCSB?
The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) is contracting with Council of State Governments (CSG) and working in collaboration with NCSB to develop and implement interstate compacts for audiologists and speech-language pathologists.

What is a State Compact?
According the Buenger, Litwak, Masters, and McCabe (2016), state compacts have existed since the birth of our nation. Our Constitutional fathers saw a need to allow states to remain independent but yet to self-govern by forming compacts vs. federal oversight.

In the most simplistic form, it is a minimum of two states agreeing to share governance of an issue. Examples exist amongst states for a variety of reasons including governance of waterways, transportation of inmates, or in allied health professions.

Why does NCSB need to be involved?
The need for continued protection of consumers, access to care, the ability to address shortage of personnel, and the continued emergence of technology is paramount as our society becomes more mobile and global.

What are the next steps?
NCSB has developed a Task Force to facilitate the discussion of what state compacts should consider for individuals who are licensed to practice audiology and speech-language pathology.
During the October conference in Santa Fe, the NCSB membership requested the Board of Directors to form a voluntary Task Force in order to have input into the development and implementation of Interstate Compacts. The purpose of the NCSB Task Force will be to provide dialogue with the NCSB Board of Directors (BOD) about the development of interstate practice. The NCSB task force includes one Audiologist-Alison Grimes-CA, one Speech-Language Pathologist-Richard Dressler-KY, one Board Attorney-Ayn Stehr-LA, one Public Member-Willliam Livermon-OK, and an ex-offico from the current NCSB Board-Kerri Phillips-LA. As monitor, Kerri Phillips has been appointed to serve as the NCSB representative for the Council of State Government (CSG) Compact Advisory Committee to represent the issues proposed by the Task Force and our membership body. CSG, in conjunction with ASHA and NCSB, is currently developing the application materials to serve on the CSG Advisory Committee.

CSG, in conjunction with ASHA and NCSB, is currently developing the application materials to serve on the ASHA Advisory Committee.

CSG has also developed a webinar “Compacts 101 for Health Care” which is available at the following link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rgj2iL8PuUA&t=14s. More information about licensure compacts will be presented as part of the Fall Conference in New Orleans.

Reference:
Buenger, M., Litwak, J., Masters, R., and McCabe, M. (2016). The evolving law and use of interstate compacts. ABA Book Publishing.

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NCSB SOLICITS NOMINATIONS FOR AWARDS

Each year at its Corporate Business Meeting, NCSB recognizes individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the professions through their involvement with licensure. Two awards have been established to honor individuals, and these include Honors of the Association and a Special Recognition Award. Briefly, Honors of the Association is intended to recognize an individual for his/her exemplary contributions to NCSB, to a licensing board in the state, or to an individual employed by an organization or other entity that addresses regulatory issues/concerns for the professions. The Special Recognition Award is given to individuals who have demonstrated exemplary commitment and contributions in the area of regulation at the state level. Criteria for these awards and detailed nomination procedures can be found at www.ncsb.info/ncsb-awards. NCSB encourages member boards to submit nominees for these two awards. Recipients will be recognized at the Business Meeting on Friday, September 15, 2017.

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CALL FOR NOMINATIONS

NCSB is seeking nominations to fill the positions of President-Elect and three board members. In keeping with the Bylaws, the President-Elect must be selected from the current Board of Directors. Directors eligible to serve as President-Elect are:
 

Kerri Phillips George Purvis Amy Goldman
Glenn Waguespack Nahale Kalfas Doreen Oyadomari
George Murphree Tracy Grammer  

The requirements for a member of the Board of Directors are that the nominee be either a board member or an individual member from a state board that is currently an NCSB member. Such individual may be a licensed speech-language pathologist, a licensed audiologist, a board administrator, a board attorney, or a public member of the board.

A call for nominations will be sent to member boards in late Spring. Member boards may submit nominations from this notice as well by sending nominations to info@ncsb.info. Once the nominations have been received, an official ballot will be forwarded to member boards for voting. The individual(s) will be announced at the Fall Business Meeting and will take office January 1, 2018.

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MEMBERSHIP IN NCSB

NCSB encourages interested individuals/boards to join NCSB. Categories of membership are as follows:

Organization Memberships

  1. Licensing Boards
    State Licensing boards are eligible to apply for Organization Membership are those boards, advisory councils, committees, or comparable bodies which conduct and maintain programs for the licensing of speech-language pathologists and audiologists in their respective states or provinces. The cost for membership is $450.00.
     
  2. Associate Organizations
    This category refers to organizations that either directly or indirectly provide services to individuals with communication disorders and whose members are impacted by licensing or certification of SLPs and AUDs. The cost for Association Membership is $450.00.

Individual Memberships

  1. Individual
    This category is available to any individual who presently for has previously served as a member, executive director, administrator, or attorney affiliated with a speech-language pathology or audiology board. Additionally, any SLP or AUD holding current licensure and with an interest in regulatory matters is entitled to apply for this affiliation. Individual members from states that are member boards in good standing shall receive discounted membership. The cost for Individual Membership is $35.00.
     
  2. Associate
    This category refers to an individual that either directly or indirectly provide services to individuals with communication disorders and whose members are impacted by licensing or certification of SLPs and AUDs. The cost for Membership is $35.00.

All levels of membership can be accessed by logging on to www.ncsb.info/membership.   

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NCSB WELCOMES TRACY GRAMMER

Last year during its election process, Tracy Grammer was elected to join the NCSB Board of Directors. Tracy, who is employed at Oklahoma University Medical Center, is a speech-language pathologist with 26 years of experience. She served on the Oklahoma Board of Examiners for Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology from August 2009-August 2015. For the period from 2011-2015, Tracy served as Chair of that Board. NCSB welcomes Tracy to the BOD and knows that her previous experience in licensure will be an asset to NCSB as the organization continues with its mission to provide information about licensure to all states.

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NCSB PRESENTS POSTER SESSION AT ASHA

At the ASHA Conference in Philadelphia in November, NCSB presented a poster session entitled “Professional Licensure: Practice Across Borders”. The poster utilized a series of maps to depict trends and characteristics in licensure across the country. The trends included the history of legislation by state, states with merged boards, states that have enacted legislation to require the doctoral degree as the entry-level credential for audiologists, states with universal licensure, states permitting hearing aid dispensing with the audiology license, continuing education requirements, telepractice regulations, and the regulation of support personnel. Handouts included a description of the characteristics as well as web site addresses for all licensure boards. NCSB hopes to submit information regarding a similar poster session for ASHA in Los Angeles.

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29th ANNUAL CONFERENCE HELD IN SANTA FE

In Santa Fe, New Mexico, from October 20-22, 2016, NCSB hosted its 29th annual conference. The conference began with Board Member Training and included a presentation by a board attorney. Following the statutory authority session in the morning, attendees participated in a mock disciplinary hearing, discussed ethical decision making utilizing board scenarios, examined complaints, and drafted consent orders.

The next day began with an address by Colmon Elridge from the Council of State Governments. The focus of the presentation was licensure portability and licensure compacts, a presentation that was followed by round table discussions related to licensure portability. Mr. Elridge provided feedback and concluding remarks related both to his presentation and to the discussions from the round table format.

Following the corporate business meeting and luncheon, the afternoon keynote focused on bilingual service provision. Tied into this presentation was a discussion of credentialing of internationally-trained applicants. This session led into a discussion of technology for board meetings. Concluding the afternoon presentations was a session on the current status of the Praxis and an update on clinical certification.

Saturday morning began with the popular state information exchange where participants shared successes and challenges related to their respective licensure boards. Next was a session on patient abandonment and finally, a session related to the 2016 revision of the ASHA Code of Ethics.

Evaluations by attendees suggested a number of topics for the next conference. Paramount among those was more information on licensure compacts and how licensure boards can more effectively deal with the issue of licensure portability and protection of the public. Comments on evaluations are considered when the Board of Directors meet to plan the next annual conference.

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30th ANNUAL CONFERENCE TO BE HELD IN NEW ORLEANS

Plans are underway for the annual Fall NCSB Conference. The conference will begin Thursday, September 14, 2017 (PLEASE NOTE EARLIER DATE THIS YEAR) at the Double Tree Hotel in New Orleans (See hotel information below). Opening the conference will be the annual Training for Board Members. As in the past, there will be a presentation by a board attorney followed by a mock disciplinary hearing. Then there will be a discussion of ethical scenarios with audience participation and an opportunity for attendees to discuss ethical issues experienced by their licensure boards.

The NCSB Board of Directors met in early March to discuss the program for the Fall Conference to be held in New Orleans. In response to requests from last year, there will be another discussion on licensure compacts and licensure portability. An update on the FTC ruling in North Carolina will be discussed, as will threats to licensure across the nation. Two attorneys will provide information regarding the kinds of information that should be contained in an investigation, and there will be an update on the Praxis and the new CAA standards. As always, the ever-popular state information exchange will provide attendees with a look at what other states are doing. Also under consideration are sessions related to supervision and social media.

NCSB will be celebrating the 30th anniversary of its conferences, so a luncheon celebration will spotlight some of the history and the background associated with the formation of NCSB. If there are other topics of interest, please notify Vickie Pullins, the Program Chair. A detailed schedule will be provided in the conference brochure to be mailed this summer, as will a registration form for the training and for the conference.

HOTEL INFORMATION

The 2017 NCSB Workshop and Conference will be held Thursday-Saturday, September 14-16, 2017. Please note that the conference is being held in September this year rather than October as has been its practice in the past. The meeting will be at the Double Tree by Hilton Hotel in New Orleans, 300 Canal Street.

Group room rates are $119 for single/double, $129 for triple, and $139 for quad. Online reservations opened October 10, 2016, and the cut-off date for conference rates is August 16, 2017. A reservation option is to book your room online as part of the group block.

  • Group Website: https://aws.passkey.com/go/NCSB2017
  • Group Code: NCS
  • Reservations can also be made by calling the toll-free number 1-800-HILTONS
     
  • Parking is valet only, and the hotel has offered special rates for NCSB attendees.
  • Overnight valet parking is $28.00 per night, exclusive of sales tax, while event parking is $12.00 per car.

The Double Tree by Hilton Hotel New Orleans is located in downtown New Orleans at 300 Canal Street. The French Quarter is within walking distance, as is Harrah’s Casino and the Audubon Aquarium. At the hotel, you can have a quick cup of coffee and enjoy complimentary WiFi in PJ’s Coffee or visit the WOW CafĂ© offering all day dining and a full-service bar. At Pinkberry’s you can enjoy yogurt with more than 30 toppings.

Relax in one of the stylish guest rooms, many of which offer views of the French Quarter, Canal Street, or the Mississippi River. Rooms are equipped with a large desk, and in-room WiFi is available. Experience the true taste of Double Tree Hotels when you check in and receive a signature warm chocolate chip cookie.

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NCSB REPRESENTED AT AuD EDUCATION SUMMIT

NCSB was invited to participate in the 2016 AuD Education Summit October 27-28, in Rockville, Maryland, and George Purvis, a member of the NCSB Board of Directors, represented the organization. The summit was hosted by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and was attended by representatives of all 75 AuD programs, as well as representatives from related professional organizations and accreditation bodies.

The focus of the summit was to consider transitioning the fourth-year externship to a residency model. It was hoped that moving to a new model would address several current challenges in clinical education, including (l) lack of standardization of the extern process, (2) quality control for extern sites, (3) qualifications and skills of preceptors, (4) student debt issues, and (5) assuring student readiness for both the externship and for graduation.

After much discussion, the summit participants determined that the audiology profession was not ready for a residency model, and they voted not to pursue the model at this time. The remaining time was spent addressing the challenges associated with the current training model. The need for standardization of the externship received significant attention as well as the necessity of a collective understanding of a vision for audiology which could be used to direct changes in training programs in a systematic manner.

Recommendations from the summit included the establishment of a task force of audiology organizations to develop an action plan to achieve outcomes of the summit. Plans are underway for a second summit, “Audiology in 2040”. NCSB will continue to monitor the work of the task force and its possible impact on licensure boards.

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SPOTLIGHT ON GEORGIA BOARD

The Georgia State Board of Examiners for Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology is an eight-member board consisting of one physician, three audiologists, three speech-language pathologists, and a consumer member. The members are appointed by the Governor to “protect the public health, safety, and welfare and to protect the public from being misled by incompetent, unscrupulous, and unauthorized persons.” The Board meets monthly to review applications for licensure and to receive, investigate, and adjudicate complaints against licensed speech-language pathologists and audiologists.

Licensure is not required of a speech-language pathologist certified by the Department of Education or Professional Standards Commission or successor agency while that person is working as an employee of a public educational institution. Grades served range from pre-kindergarten through grade 12, land no fees are charged for the services either directly or through a third party, except for Medicaid.

Current Board Members are as follows:

  • Brig Zimmerman - Executive Director
  • Melanie Gilly (SlP) - Chair
  • Eric Chatelain (SLP) - Vice-Chair
  • Holly Kaplan (AUD)
  • Miranda Pritcher Ross (AUD)
  • Robin Alverson (AUD)
  • Melanie Hudson (SLP)
  • Lauren Wright (Consumer Member)

Email a question to the Board: http://sos.ga.gov/cgi-bin/emailplb.asp. The Board Address is:
237 Coliseum Drive
Macon, Georgia 31217
(478) 207-2440

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NCSB MEMBERS PRESENT AT CSAP

NCSB Board members Alison Lemke, George Purvis, and Amy Goldman presented to the Council of State Association Presidents (CSAP) at ASHA in Philadelphia. State leaders have an important stake in the work of the Boards in their states and in current topics concerning licensure. The presentation included information and Q&A about current threats, trends, and more importantly, the ongoing collaborative efforts of ASHA and NCSB on the topic of licensure portability. State leaders were encouraged to join NCSB as Individual Members (criteria for this level of membership detailed elsewhere in this publication).

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JOIN NCSB ON FACEBOOK

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Keep up to date on the latest news and information from NCSB. Join Facebook and have access to early announcements of conference locations, accommodations, and programs.

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NCSB SOLICITS YOUR OPINIONS

NCSB hopes to involve members of state licensing boards in the planning for its annual conference. Please respond online via survey monkey:
https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/6TJ7K2Q

Please complete by July 31, 2017

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NCSB Board of Directors


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