National Council of State Boards of Examiners

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Summer 2022 Newsletter

25 Aug 2022 11:28 AM | Robert Ranieri (Administrator)

Summer 2022

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PRESIDENT’S CORNER

BY: Amy Goldman

I can't wait to welcome you all to our 2022 NCSB Board Training and Conference! We are excited about the amenities offered by the conference venue as well as the wonders of the "Land of Enchantment". These are outshone only by the stellar line-up of timely and relevant topics and faculty our NCSB President-Elect Tammy Brown has assembled. As always, this event is the perfect opportunity to network with licensing boards across the country who share your responsibilities and challenges.

A complete program is included elsewhere in the newsletter, so please read it for specific details. A highlight of the conference is always the Board Member Training that is held on the day preceding the conference. Initially designed for new board members, the training includes activities for seasoned as well as new board members. Information on statutory authority is presented, and attendees are encouraged to share their legislative experiences. Participants are also provided the opportunity to participate in both a compliance hearing and a formal disciplinary hearing. At the conclusion of the workshop ethical dilemmas are presented so regulatory board members can provide input.
The conference itself focuses on inclusion and collaboration, topics that have an impact on licensure boards across the country. As always, the state information exchange provides attendees with networking opportunities and with information regarding what challenges other licensing boards are facing.

The conference hotel has a number of amenities to appeal to all attendees. Breakfast is provided each morning, and a happy hour complete with snacks and drinks is provided each afternoon. The rooms are spacious, and the hotel itself is located within walking distance of the unique Santa Fe downtown.

Plan to take advantage of all there is to do in the charming city of Santa Fe. I would like to wish everyone the best in health and, and we look forward to seeing you at our conference in October. See you in Santa Fe!

Best,

Amy

MISSION
The mission of the NCSB is to promote consumer protection by supporting regulatory boards in speech-language pathology and audiology in fulfilling statutory, professional and ethical obligations.

VISION
The vision of NCSB is to be the pre-eminent resource regarding licensure for the professions of speech-language pathology and audiology
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INSIDE THIS ISSUE

PRESIDENTS CORNER - See above

NCSB 35th Annual Conference - See Below

Board Member Honored by State Association

Update on the Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology Interstate Licensing Compact (ASLP-IC)

Spotlight on Licensure Boards

MEMBERSHIP IN NCSB

JOIN NCSB ON FACEBOOK

NCSB BOARD OF DIRECTORS

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NCSB 35th Annual Conference

“Good Governance: Inclusion and Collaboration in the
Regulation of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology”

Registration brochures announcing the 35th annual NCSB Conference have been mailed. If you or your state board did not receive one of the brochures, a registration form, program agenda, and hotel information are included in this newsletter. As in past years, a pre-conference workshop on Training for Board Members will be held on Thursday, October 13, 2022, and the one and one-half day conference will follow on October 14 & 15, 2022. NCSB invites boards to participate in both the board training and the conference. Following is a synopsis of the pre-conference workshop and the conference.

Pre-Conference Workshop  Conference Schedule

Venue  Registration  Sponsorship

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Board Member Honored by State Association

Kerri Phillips, who as twice served as NCSB President, was honored with a Special Recognition Award by the Louisiana Speech-Language-Hearing Association. Kerri was recognized for her work in promoting and developing the interstate licensing compact for audiology and speech-language pathology. Kerri has served on the drafting team and has worked closely with the Council of State Governments in providing states with information regarding the compact. She currently serves as the NCSB representative to the Executive Committee. NCSB is grateful for Kerri’s groundwork and assistance in this important endeavor.

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Update on the Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology Interstate Licensing Compact (ASLP-IC)

A few years ago, a profession changing idea was proposed at the NCSB Conference in Santa Fe, New Mexico. As forward thinking as the idea was, NCSB members stepped in, and this revolutionary idea began to take shape.

As of the date of this newsletter, the ASLP-IC has been adopted by law in 23 states. The adoption has allowed the formation of the ASLP-IC Commission. During the 2022 year, the Commission established committees for Rules, Compliance, and Finance. A complete listing of committee members and meeting minutes can be found at the https://aslpcompact.com/commission/aslp-ic-commission-executive-board-committees/.

NCSB would like to acknowledge the financial support of ASHA, AAA, and ADA in pledging the initial startup funds to allow the activation of the Compact. All committee meetings are held via Zoom. Future committee meetings dates and times can be found at https://aslpcompact.com/commission/.

A Note on the Current Status of the ASLP-IC from the ASLP-IC Commission Chair:

Initial Meeting of the ASLP Interstate Compact Commission:
The commission that will govern the compact is composed of both an Audiology and a Speech-Language Pathology delegate from the Licensure Board in each member state, along with two non-voting ex-officio representatives from professional associations (ASHA, AAA, ADA rotating), the National Council of State Boards of Examiners in SLP/A (NCSB), and 5 executive directors or public members from licensing boards in member states. The commission met for the first time on January 12 & 13, 2022 and elected Officers, Executive Committee, Rules Committee, Finance Committee, and Compliance Committee members. Initial funding for the operation of the commission until it is fully operational and charging fees will come from ASHA, AAA, and ADA. At the time of the initial meeting there were 15 member states in the compact.

Current Compact Membership:
An additional 9 states enacted the compact in 2022, putting compact membership at 23 states.

Recent Commission Activity:
Over the last seven months the various commission committees have been working on reviewing funding agreements establishing an operating budget, further delineating rules and regulations for the operation of the compact, selection of a secretariat to interface between the funding agencies/sources and the commission, a job description for an executive director who will work for the commission, exploration of a database sufficient for full compact operations across all member states, and establishment of the FBI fingerprint and background check process required for the compact. Onboarding of delegates from states that have recently ratified the compact is also a continuing process. It is anticipated those operations will continue through the remainder of 2022.

When will the Compact become Operational?
At the time of the initial meeting Commission members were told by representatives from the Council of State Governments that the typical time for setting up an interstate compact is about 18 months depending on funding availability. It is hoped that sometime in 2023 all the pieces will be finalized, in-place, and a data system funded so that the commission can begin issuing privileges for interstate practice to licensees in the member states. As can be seen from the description above, setting up a process that will function smoothly and efficiently across all member states and licensure boards and protect consumers and professionals alike is a very complex procedure, and it is important to note that all this work is being done by unpaid volunteers. t

Respectfully Submitted,
Lawrence F. Molt, Ph.D., CCC-A, CCC-SLP, FASHA, FAA
ASLP-ICC Chair

Audiology & Speech Language Pathology-Interstate Compact (ASLP-IC)

In support of the ASLP-IC NCSB has developed a position statement on interstate licensure compacts. Following is the text of the statement:

The National Council of State Boards of Examiners for Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology (NCSB), consistent with its mission to promote consumer protection by supporting regulatory boards in speech-language pathology and audiology and in fulfilling statutory authority, professional, and ethical obligations, adopts the following position regarding the proposed Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology Interstate Compact (ASLP-IC).

NCSB supports the proposed ASLP-IC. Since 2016 NCSB has worked closely with the Council of State Governments and their Interstate Compact Advisory Workgroup to develop a proposed interstate compact for audiology and speech-language pathology. The ASLP-IC is an occupational licensure compact that addresses the increased demand for practitioners to provide, and for consumers to receive, appropriate speech-language pathology and audiology services in concert with prevailing standards. It authorizes both telehealth and in-person practice across state lines without having to become licensed in additional ASLP-IC states. The compact permits audiologists and speech-language pathologists to provide services to populations currently underserved or geographically isolated. The compact also allows military personnel and spouses to more easily maintain their professional license when relocating.

Additionally, the ASLP-IC improves consumer protection across state lines. The compact increases access to care when patients, clients, and/or students relocate or travel to another compact member state. The compact also promotes cooperation between ASLP-IC member states on interstate licensure and regulation requirements such as continuing education. The compact ensures that audiologists and speech-language pathologists from other ASLP-IC member states who practice in another compact state, under the privilege granted by the compact, have met acceptable standards of practice. In summary, the ASLP-IC reduces regulatory barriers that negatively impact both consumers and practitioners. The compact does not change a state’s scope of practice for audiology or speech-language pathology, but it does ensure the ethical and legal provision of services while still protecting the public.

The NCSB Board of Directors support passage of the ASLP-IC and commit to supporting legislative efforts to that end.

NCSB encourages regulatory boards to become involved in the formation of a licensure compact in their respective states as a means of facilitating the interstate practice of audiology and speech-language pathology with the goal of improving public access to those services.

Nahale Kalfas, Board attorney in North Carolina, has been actively involved with the Council of State Governments in the formation of the compact.

Note: Through the years NCSB has been fortunate to receive periodic updates from Donald Illich and his colleagues regarding SLPs and AUD’s whose sanctions have been reported to the National Practitioner Data Bank (NPDB). All authors work at HRSA, and the following article is the latest in their updates regarding our profession. NCSB is grateful for the continued support and information provided by these authors.

Reporting Adverse Actions to the National Practitioner Data Bank

Donald Illich, Jiaying Hua, and Valerie Kamara
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), Bureau of Health Workforce (BHW), Division of Practitioner Data Bank (DPDB)

What should state licensing boards know about the National Practitioner Data Bank (NPDB)? State boards of audiology and speech-language pathology are required to report certain actions to the NPDB. The NPDB can also provide valuable background information for them to use in conjunction with other resources when making licensing decisions, investigating licensees, and monitoring licensees.

The NPDB
A confidential information clearinghouse created by Congress in 1986, the NPDB’s goals are to improve health care quality, protect the public, and reduce health care fraud and abuse in the United States. It provides information that assists queriers in performing comprehensive reviews of the credentials of health care practitioners, providers, and suppliers. The NPDB collects information on medical malpractice payments and certain adverse actions and discloses that information to eligible entities.

The Value of NPDB Reports
Querying the NPDB for information on speech-language pathologists and audiologists allows for informed decision-making. Reports can be used in conjunction with other information provided by applicants and licensees to create complete pictures of their professional histories.

Boards increase the value of the NPDB by reporting necessary actions, including licensure suspensions and revocations of licenses that result from formal proceedings. “Formal proceedings” mean proceedings held before a state licensing or certification authority, peer review organization, or private accreditation entity that maintains defined rules, policies, or procedures for such a proceeding.

If all legally required actions are reported, it is more likely that boards can identify unprofessional and/or incompetent practitioners before they are licensed. Reporting licensure actions adds to the completeness of NPDB information, which increases its value. Without reports, queriers might get an incomplete picture of a practitioner’s record.

Reporting Requirements
State boards must report certain actions taken against speech-language pathologists and audiologists. Federal regulations require state boards to submit reports concerning various adverse actions. The actions must be the result of formal proceedings and may include:

  • Any adverse action taken by a board as a result of a formal proceeding, including: revocation or suspension of a license; reprimand; censure; or probation.
  • Any dismissal or closure of a formal proceeding because the audiologist/speech-language pathologist surrendered the license because the subject of the proceeding left the state or jurisdiction.
  • Any other loss of license or the right to apply for, or renew, a license by an audiologist/speech-language pathologist, whether by operation of law, voluntary surrender, nonrenewal (excluding nonrenewals due to nonpayment of fees, retirement, or change to inactive status), or otherwise.
  • Any negative action or finding by the board that, under the state's law, is publicly available information, including, but not limited to, limitations on the scope of practice, liquidations, injunctions, and forfeitures. This definition also includes final adverse actions rendered by a board – such as exclusions, revocations, or suspension of license – that occur in conjunction with settlements in which no finding of liability has been made (although such a settlement itself is not reportable). This definition excludes administrative fines or citations and corrective action plans and other personnel actions, unless: the underlying activity is connected to the delivery of health care services, or the action is taken in conjunction with other adverse licensure actions, such as revocation, suspension, censure, reprimand, probation, or surrender.

When a license is suspended, the length of the suspension must also be reported. Boards must report any revisions to a previously reported licensing action, such as a reinstatement of a suspended license, and whether an action is on appeal.

Compliance
To further its mission of improving the quality of health care, and reducing fraud and abuse, the NPDB operates a compliance review effort for state boards to improve the completeness and accuracy of reported data.

All boards renew their registration and complete their attestation.

All boards also verify and update their regulated professions list. The NPDB administrator(s) can review and edit their board’s regulated professions list at any time by signing into their account. During the attestation process, boards will attest/confirm that they have reported all legally required reports for the professions that they regulate.

For select boards, registration renewal is the first step of their compliance review. The NPDB collects data regarding adverse actions taken by selected state licensing and certification boards (boards) for the 24 month period (or two years) before each board’s registration renewal date. The purpose is to ensure that all required actions according to federal law have been correctly reported to the NPDB. The NPDB will compare this data with the actions submitted by the selected boards, and will identify potential reporting gaps. The compliance review includes professions that are queried most often (by organizations registered with the NPDB), and, a random sampling of other professions.

The NPDB shares the results of its compliance reviews through an interactive compliance map. The interactive map allows users to find information about compliance for current and past board reviews, and displays each entity’s compliance results. For full compliance results, visit Reporting Compliance Status by State.

Reports in the Data Bank
As of December 31, 2021, the NPDB contained over 1.6 million reports filed on over 833,000 individual practitioners of all types. Fifty-six percent of those reports are licensure actions, 30% malpractice payments, and 8% Medicare and Medicaid exclusions. The remaining reports include clinical privileges or panel membership actions, health plan actions, professional society membership actions, Drug Enforcement Administration actions, government administrative actions, and judgments or convictions.

Boards may take a variety of licensure actions against audiologists and speech-language pathologists; such as restrictions, suspensions, and probations. The majority of NPDB reports on audiologist and speech-language pathologists are licensure actions; however the table below details the other types of adverse actions reported against audiologists and speech-language pathologists.

Boards also may take a variety of licensure actions against practitioners related to audiologists and speech-language pathologists: Hearing Aid (or Instrument) Specialists, Dealers, Dispensers and Other Speech, Language and Hearing Service Occupations. The majority of NPDB reports on these practitioners are also licensure actions; however, the table below details the other types of adverse actions reported against them.

Table 1. Number of NPDB Reports by Practitioner Type
(September 1, 1990 -- December 31, 2021)

For More Information
For additional information, visit the NPDB Web site at www.npdb.hrsa.gov. For technical questions related to billing, registration, and submitting a report, contact the Customer Service Center at help@npdb.hrsa.gov or 1-800-767-6732. Policy questions can also be sent via email to NPDBPolicy@hrsa.gov

Disclaimer: This article is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by HRSA, HHS or the U.S. Government."

Author Affiliations

Donald Illich, DIllich@hrsa.gov

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), Bureau of Health Workforce (BHW), Division of Practitioner Data Bank (DPDB)
5600 Fishers Lane, Rockville, MD, 20857

Jiaying Hua, JHua@hrsa.gov

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), Bureau of Health Workforce (BHW), Division of Practitioner Data Bank (DPDB)
5600 Fishers Lane, Rockville, MD, 20857

Valerie Kamara, VKamara@hrsa.gov

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), Bureau of Health Workforce (BHW), Division of Practitioner Data Bank (DPDB)
5600 Fishers Lane, Rockville, MD, 20857

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Spotlight on Licensure Boards

NCSB periodically spotlights licensure boards so that readers can gain a perspective of what is happening with regulation across the country. The spotlight may contain information about the members of the Board, how to file a complaint, and other pertinent data for all interested audiologists and speech-language pathologists. This edition shines the spotlight on Kentucky.

Board Members

  • Douglas Keefe, M.S. (SLP) - Chair
  • Stephanie Graham, Citizen-at-Large
  • Casey Rutledge Roof, Au.D. (Audiology)
  • Mary Elizabeth Carrico, Au.D. (Audiology)
  • Ciera Mills, M.S. (SLP)
  • Beth McNulty, M.D. (Otolaryngology)
  • Virginia T. Rose, M.S. (SLP)
  • Margaret Adkins, Au.D. (Audiology)

Board Administrator: Megan Bradford

Address:
P.O.Box1360
Frankfort, KY 40602
Phone:502-782-8801
Fax:502-564-4818
Email: SLPA@ky.gov

Board Meetings
The Kentucky Board of Speech-Language Pathology & Audiology meets at 500 Mero Street, Frankfort, KY 40601. Board meetings begin at 1 p.m., unless noted. The meeting schedule is linked below.

Continuing Education requirements:

  1. A minimum of thirty (30) continuing education hours shall be accrued by each person holding licensure as a speech-language pathologist, speech-language pathology assistant, or audiologist during the biennial period for renewal.”
  2. A person who holds a license in both speech-language pathology and audiology shall complete a minimum of fifty (50) continuing education hours during the biennial period for renewal. This person shall obtain continuing education hours in both areas of licensure.

KY was one of the first 10 states to adopt the ASLP-IC.

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MEMBERSHIP IN NCSB

 

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JOIN NCSB ON FACEBOOK

 

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NCSB BOARD OF DIRECTORS

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