In the most game-changing decision of the decade, Georgia’s Composite Board of Professional Counselors, Social Workers and Marriage and Family Therapists notified interested parties of their proposed, “TeleMental Health” rule 153-11-01 on n Thursday, July 23, 2015. The Georgia Composite Board has established its leadership by:
- Defining telemental health-related terms for their licensees
- Requiring 6 hours of professional training (CE coursework) for licensees for practicing telemental health, and
- Specifying clear areas to be covered by professional training
Suggested TeleMental Health Areas of Competency
Professional training topics proposed for Georgia licensees wishing to engage in the practice of telemental health include:
- The scientific evidence-base
- Intake and assessment
- Delivery methods
- Integrating in-person care and distance care
- Informed consent
- Risk management
- The “business” of online practice (online marketing)
- Working with clients from out-of-state
- Internet overuse disorders
It is no surprise that Georgia is setting the pace for telehealth legislation, given how progressive the state has been since the 1950’s in obtaining federal grant monies to develop their telehealth infrastructure. These early funds were also used to experiment with early delivery models for reaching rural patients who otherwise would receive little or no health care. Practitioners and their Licensing Boards then, have long been aware of technology and how it can help as well as hinder the clinical relationship, depending on the clinician’s competency related to the services being delivered via technology. Georgia’s Composite Board of Professional Counselors, Social Workers and Marriage and Family Therapists is acting on the heels of Georgia’s Medical Board, which passed a comprehensive telemedicine rule in August of 2014. More information about the the Board’s detailed telemedicine rule, also available in a well-written summary by Health Care Law Today.
Where Can You Get Such Training?
Professionals who are interested in obtaining CE and CME to meet all requirements by these state boards are encouraged to review the TeleMental Health Institute’s eLearning offerings. Training is available both 100% online, or in-person with a TMHI speaker who will travel to address your organization.
- 6-hour Telemental Health Theory and Practice Training
- 3-hour Telesupervision Training
- 15 or 39 hour “Distance Credentialed Counselor” Training (DCC) for discounted package fees
TMHI’s trained speakers are enthusiastic, fun and extremely well-informed. They will delight your group with either a 1-day or 2-day program. The 1-day meets criteria set by Georgia’s Composite Board. TMHI’s 2-day programs meet the DCC requirements for credentialing by the Center for Credentialing & Education (CCE) for master’s level clinicians.
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