Legislature(2005 - 2006)CAPITOL 17

04/21/2006 03:15 PM LABOR & COMMERCE

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03:32:08 PM Start
03:32:54 PM SB177
03:43:11 PM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
Moved Out of Committee
SB 177-PRACTICE OF PSYCHOLOGY                                                                                                 
REPRESENTATIVE  KOTT announced  that the  only order  of business                                                               
would be  CS FOR  SENATE BILL NO.  177(HES), "An  Act eliminating                                                               
the prohibition on  the use by certain  licensed professionals of                                                               
titles  or descriptions  of services  that incorporate  the terms                                                               
'psychoanalysis,'        'psychoanalyst,'        'psychotherapy,'                                                               
'psychotherapeutic,' or 'psychotherapist.'"                                                                                     
3:32:54 PM                                                                                                                    
JASON  HOOLEY,  Staff  to  Senator  Fred  Dyson,  Senate  Health,                                                               
Education and  Social Services  Standing Committee,  Alaska State                                                               
Legislature,  Sponsor,  noted  a   letter  from  the  sponsor  in                                                               
members' packets, which discusses  the standards for licensure of                                                               
each professional  group affected by SB  177.  He said  that each                                                               
profession  requires a  masters'  degree, at  least  one year  of                                                               
supervised experience, in  addition to a board exam.   Mr. Hooley                                                               
related  the sponsor's  concern that  the individuals  practicing                                                               
the   services   described  in   the   bill   be  qualified   and                                                               
satisfactorily supervised.                                                                                                      
3:33:48 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  LEDOUX inquired  as  to the  training a  licensed                                                               
clinical  social  worker  (LCSW),  licensed  marital  and  family                                                               
therapist (LMFT),  or a licensed professional  counselor receives                                                               
in psychoanalysis.                                                                                                              
3:34:20 PM                                                                                                                    
ANNE  L.  HENRY, Chair,  Alaska  Board  of Licensed  Professional                                                               
Counselors,   explained   that   psychiatrists   have   typically                                                               
performed  psychoanalysis, as  this  was  the original  technique                                                               
used in psychotherapy.  She  said that several techniques evolved                                                               
out of this,  including Gestalt therapy.   Marianne Robinson, she                                                               
said,  is a  practitioner  in  Anchorage who  has  a [Masters  in                                                               
social work], and has received  years of psychoanalytic training.                                                               
She explained that [Ms. Robinson]  is the "main person" who would                                                               
like  this  changed.    She  said  that  she  is  unsure  of  the                                                               
requirement for  training and supervised practice,  but said that                                                               
generally, there  is "quite a  bit" of work involved,  along with                                                               
national certification.                                                                                                         
3:36:18 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE LEDOUX  remarked that the  bill appears to  be for                                                               
one  person, and  inquired  about practitioners  who  may not  be                                                               
qualified,  but would  be  able  to use  the  terms  if the  bill                                                               
MS. HENRY  replied that there  is an  "ethical code" for  each of                                                               
the four disciplines.   This code, she said, acts  as part of the                                                               
disciplinary policy.   She stated  that one of the  main sections                                                               
of the disciplinary  code states that a person  must not practice                                                               
any modality in which he or  she has not been adequately trained.                                                               
If  a person  does this,  she  said, his  or her  license may  be                                                               
revoked and a fine may be assessed.   She opined that this is "as                                                               
stiff as it can get," adding that  a person who takes the time to                                                               
get licensed  does not want  to lose the  license.  In  regard to                                                               
whether SB  289 is for the  benefit of one person,  she said that                                                               
this is  incorrect.  She  explained that when  psychologists were                                                               
originally  writing statutes  for  licensure, the  intent was  to                                                               
restrict  the   language  that   applies  to   psychotherapy  and                                                               
psychoanalysis;   however,  other   practitioners  began   to  be                                                               
licensed.  The [psychologists] have  realized, she said, that the                                                               
terms were unjustly  restricted.  Ms. Henry stated  that the bill                                                               
is intended  to rectify a  conflict between the  current statutes                                                               
and   Medicaid  regulations.     She   explained  that   Medicaid                                                               
recognizes "psychotherapy"  as a  service and  allows for  all of                                                               
the  four mental  health professions  to bill  for this  service.                                                               
She said that  the bill was brought forward  by several directors                                                               
of state funded mental health  facilities who were concerned with                                                               
this discrepancy.                                                                                                               
3:38:58 PM                                                                                                                    
MS. HENRY  went on to  say that  the [Board of  Psychologists and                                                               
Psychological   Associate  Examiners]   decided  to   remove  the                                                               
restriction on  "psychoanalysis" and "psychoanalytical,"  as they                                                               
do not practice these modalities.                                                                                               
ACTING CHAIR KOTT closed public testimony.                                                                                      
3:40:11 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE LEDOUX  said that she is  still uncomfortable with                                                               
"psychoanalysis"   and    "psychoanalyst,"   noting    that   the                                                               
practitioner may be punished if  training is not "adequate."  She                                                               
expressed concern with the term "adequate."                                                                                     
3:41:23 PM                                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  CRAWFORD moved  to  report CSSB  177(HES) out  of                                                               
committee  with individual  recommendations and  the accompanying                                                               
fiscal  notes.   There  being  no  objection, CSSB  177(HES)  was                                                               
reported from the House Labor and Commerce Standing Committee.                                                                  
3:42:24 PM                                                                                                                    

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