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Georgia Social Work Licensure Update

 

Please note the following update regarding the Georgia Composite Board of Professional Counselors, Social Workers, and Marriage and Family Therapists proposed new Chapter 135-12 (Testing and Assessment) and proposed new Rule 135-12-.01 (Testing and Assessments).

 

Dear NASWGA Membership:

 

The Composite Board DID NOT vote to advertise Rule 135-12-01 for public comment at the March 10, 2017 Composite Board meeting.  

 

NASWGA Chapter suggests that our members

  1. delay taking any post-graduate psychopathology type course until this Rule is passed by Composite Board; AND 
  2. wait for email from NASWGA Chapter office which will offer a full explanation of the Rule and how it will or will not impact your scope of practice

Note:  The President of NASW Georgia Chapter Board of Directors, Karen Starks, was in attendance at the monthly Composite Board meeting on March 10, 2017.  She inquired if Rule 135-12-01 had been reviewed by the Attorney General's office and learned that it had not.  To that end, here are the steps to the Rule approval process going forward:

  • The Attorney General (AG) has to review and approve the Rule, then send it back to Composite Board for a vote - this may not happen until next Composite Board meeting on 4/7/17.
  • After receiving the approved Rule from the AG, the Composite Board members will vote to allow for public comment
  • The Composite Board will then send out a statewide notice indicating the due date for written and public comment on the Rule.  NASWGA will provide both written and public comment on behalf of our membership.
  • After receiving the written and public comments, the Composite Board Joint Rules committee will incorporate this information and send the revised Rule to the full Board
  • It is unclear at this time if the revised Rule will have to go back to the AG

 

Whenever the final vote occurs, NASWGA will provide our membership with a full explanation of the Rule and how it will impact our scope of practice.


If you need further explanation or have comments / input about the proposed bill, please do not hesitate contact the NASWGA Chapter office at naswga@mindspring.com and write in subject box: Rule 135-1201 Question – Comment.

 

 

The proposed Testing and Assessments Chapter/Rule can also be found on the Secretary of State’s web site at http://sos.ga.gov/index.php/licensing/plb/43/composite_board_proposed_rules.

 

 

Please note: The adoption of this new rule chapter and rule will impact every licensee within their scope of practice, in the same manner, and that each licensee is independently licensed in the field of Professional Counselors, Social Workers, and Marriage and Family Therapists.

 

 

As reference, please review information on Senate Bill 319 (SB319), which was passed during the 2015-2016 Georgia General Assembly legislative session, on the Georgia General Assembly web site at http://www.legis.ga.gov/Legislation/20152016/161852.pdf (excerpts provided below):

 

 

To amend Title 43 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to professions and businesses…to clarify that persons licensed as professional counselors, social workers, and marriage and family therapists are not authorized to conduct psychological testing… to provide for a curriculum of continuing education relating to diagnosing…to clarify that psychological testing is part of the practice of psychology; to provide that certain licensed persons are able to perform certain tests other than psychological testing…”

 

 

“The General Assembly… authorized  the Georgia Composite Board of Professional Counselors, Social Workers, and Marriage and Family Therapists to fulfill these responsibilities… to assure a continuum of professional services that ensure appropriate diagnostic and assessment functions for each profession and the psychotherapeutic and counseling treatment services appropriate to each profession.”