After dismissing any significant changes suggested by the community members given at the December 16, 2022 public feedback meeting, the Louisiana State Board of Examiners of Psychologists has gone forward and finalized almost 19,000 words of new regulations published in the April Louisiana Register.
The most dramatic change may be the creation of a new registration category for assistants to psychologists, including new rules and regulations on how these assistants must be supervised.
In Chapter 11, Supervision of Assistants to Psychologists, the new rules note: “An assistant registered under the provisions of this Chapter shall utilize the title ‘assistant to a psychologist’ also referred to as ‘ATAP’ only within the context of their employment with a licensed psychologist or their employment within an agency or hospital while under the direct supervision of a licensed psychologist; […]
“An ATAP providing psychological services must be under the general and continuing professional supervision of a licensed psychologist. In order to maintain ultimate legal and professional responsibility for the welfare of every client, the supervisor must be vested with functional authority over the psychological services provided by an ATAP.
“Upon, or pending, employment of an ATAP, but prior to assisting in psychological duties, the Supervising Psychologist shall submit a complete application for initial registration, required registration fee, and documentation on such form and in such manner as may be prescribed by the board to demonstrate that the registrant meets all of the following criteria:
[…]”In §1103, Responsibilities of Supervisors, the new rule requires that the psychologist, “provides general professional supervision of the ATAP that shall include one cumulative hour per week as a minimum for direct supervisory contact,” and that “exceptions to this requirement must have prior approval of the board;”
The board points out that, ” Neglect in maintaining the above standards of practice may result in disciplinary action against the supervisor’s license to practice, including suspension or revocation.”
The new rules also include changes in roles, for examples the inclusion of an advisory workgroup and a position, licensing examiner. Changes to the definition of an applicant include the criminal history background check. There are also changes in the definition of and requirements relating to the Provisional Licensed Psychologist and the applicant phase of the provisional license.
Chapter 3, training and credentials in the doctoral programs of psychology, includes changes. Qualifications for doctoral programs that are not accredited by the American Psychological Association are specified as having to meet several detailed standards.
In a section regarding specialty areas, the new rules outline definitions for Health Service Psychology and General Applied Psychology.
“The provision of direct health and/or behavioral health services requires training in an applied health service area such as clinical psychology, counseling psychology, clinical neuropsychology,
school psychology, or other developed health service areas that are offered under training programs that are accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA) in a health service area. […]
And, “General Applied Psychology. The provision of psychological services in applied non-healthcare areas include services outside health and behavioral health fields; direct services to individuals and/or groups for assessment and/or evaluation of personal abilities and characteristics for individual development, behavior change, and/or for making decisions about the individual; and may also include services to organizations that are provided for the benefit of the organization. […]
The new rules also define clinical neuropsychology and add to the description, “[…] specialty internship in clinical neuropsychology (one year minimum), followed by the completion of one year of post-doctoral supervised experience in clinical neuropsychology; or, the equivalent of two full years (4,000 hours) of post-doctoral experience in clinical neuropsychology under the
supervision of a qualified clinical neuropsychologist […]”
For Chapter 7, supervised practice leading toward licensure, the new rule adds the following: “supervised practice and establishes that the legal, administrative and professional responsibility of supervision rests with the licensed psychologist or medical psychologist licensed in accordance with R.S. 27:1360.51 et seq., designated as supervisor.”
The text for §705, qualifications of supervisors, includes: “Responsibility for the overall supervision of the supervisee’s professional growth resides in the licensed psychologist or medical psychologist. Supervising psychologists shall be licensed to practice psychology at the doctoral level by the regulatory body that is vested with jurisdictional authority over the practice of psychology in the respective jurisdiction.”
Also, “The supervisor may not supervise any more than two candidates for licensure at the same time.”
New information on telepsychology and telesupervision is included in the new rules. Examples are: “The use of telecommunications is not appropriate for all problems. The specific process of providing professional services varies across situation, setting and time, and decisions regarding the appropriate delivery of telepsychology services are made on a case-by-case basis.
The rules instruct psychologists to, “reflect on multicultural issues when delivering telepsychology services to diverse clients; obtain the necessary professional and technical training, experience, and skills to adequately conduct the telepsychology services that they provide;” and “have an Emergency Management plan.”
n §1702, Definition of Psychological Testing, Evaluation and Assessment, the rules note: “The Board of Examiners of Psychologists finds it necessary to formally define psychological testing in order to protect the people of this state from the unlawful, unqualified and improper use of
psychological tests. The intent of this rule is to provide a definition of psychological testing sufficient to allow this board to effectively regulate this aspect of psychological practice. […]
In §803, Requirements, the Board is adding: “Within each reporting period, two of the required hours or credits of continuing professional development must be within the area of multiculturalism or diversity in accordance with the limitations specified in §807.
In §805, Acceptable Sponsorship, Offerings and Activities, the board is making changes and clarifications to who may offer continuing education.
“A. Any individual or entity may apply for board approval of a proposed CPD offering or activity as follows. 1. The individual or entity providing the proposed CPD offering or activity files a completed CPD Approval Application on the form provide by the board. 2. The individual or entity providing the proposed CPD offering or activity provides information sufficient to the board that the CPD meets requirements set forth under §801; […]”
For Chapter 9, Licensees, the board is establishing §905. Psychologists Emerit: Retired.
“A. A psychologist emeritus: retired is eligible to renew their emerit status license provided they submit such renewal application along with the annual renewal fee at the reduced rate established under Chapter 6 of this Part; and are fully retired from the practice of psychology, not rendering psychological services in any form, and are not engaging in any activity that might be construed as the practice of psychology within the state of Louisiana.”The retired individual is not required to complete continuing professional development.
Also included was an extensive code of ethics for the License School Specialist in Psychology.
The complete rules maybe found in the Louisiana Register, April edition, pages 657-679, at