Newsroom > DHHS News Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 9, 2010

CONTACT
Marla Augustine, DHHS, Communications and Legislative Services, (402-471-4047), marla.augustine@nebraska.gov

Department of Health and Human Services to Hold Hearing on Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology June 17 in Lincoln


Lincoln – The Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Public Health will hold a hearing to accept comments on proposed changes to regulations for Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology in title 172, Chapter 23 and Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology Assistants in a new Chapter 24 in Title 172 of the Nebraska Administrative Code (NAC). The hearing will be held June 17, 2010 at 1:30 p.m. CDT, in the Nebraska State Office Building, Lower Level, Conference Room ‘A’, Lincoln, NE.

The proposed and new changes will implement provisions of the Uniform Credentialing Act (UCA) including:

  • Delineating the process for initially obtaining, renewing, reinstating, or voluntarily surrendering a credential to practice;
  • Specifying acts or behaviors considered unprofessional conduct;
  • Specifying continuing competency requirements; and
  • Requiring verification of lawful presence in the United States.

In addition to the UCA changes the proposed changes in Chapter 23 also include:

  • Adding a requirement that an audiologist who engages in the sale of hearing instruments must obtain a license as a hearing instrument specialist;
  • Removing requirements for registration as a communication assistant and supervision of a communication assistant;
  • Delineating the continuing competency requirements for individuals who have met the education requirements and successfully passed the licensure examination, but did not apply for a license within three years of meeting the requirements;
  • Delineating the continuing competency requirements for individuals who were not residing in or practicing in Nebraska within the last three years immediately preceding the application for a Nebraska credential; and
  • Making other technical and editing changes.

In addition to the UCA provisions, the new Chapter 24 will also implement Laws 2007, LB 247 including:

  • Specifying certification requirements to supervise audiology and speech-language pathology assistants and supervisory duties;
  • Specifying qualifications for registration as an audiology and speech-language pathology assistant;
  • Outlining coursework required for professional education to be equivalent to an associate degree in communication disorders;
  • Specifying additional training requirements for an audiology and speech-language pathology assistant if s/he is performing aural rehabilitation;
  • Specifying a deadline to notify the Department if supervision is terminated by the audiology and speech-language pathologist; and
  • Defining terms such as accredited training program, alternate supervisor, audiology and speech-language pathology assistant, and on-site supervision.

Anyone may attend and comment at the hearings or submit comments in writing. Written comments must be postmarked or received by 5:00 p.m. CT, June 19, 2010. They should be sent to DHHS Regulatory Analysis and Integration, 301 Centennial Mall South, P.O. Box 95026, Lincoln, NE 68509; faxed to 402-742-2382; or e-mailed to Rules.Regs@dhhs.ne.gov.

If auxiliary aids or reasonable accommodations are needed to participate in a hearing, please call 402-471-9022. Persons with hearing impairments may call the DHHS at 402-471-9570 (voice and TDD) or the Nebraska Relay System at 711 or 800-833-7352 TDD.

Draft regulations and DHHS hearing notices are available online at: www.sos.ne.gov/rules-and-regs/regtrack/index.cgi.

-30-