Central Issues: Addressing the Key Issues of OHLA-Regulated Professions
The Oregon Health Licensing Agency (OHLA) has produced a series of online publications, Central Issues, focusing on the key issues the agency is addressing in collaboration with OHLA boards and councils.
Following is a quick overview and links to each of the six Central Issues OHLA has recently distributed to agency stakeholders and the media for the following:
The goal? To inform licensees, consumers and other agency stakeholders of licensing and regulatory developments while fostering increased dialogue and participation in the agency's consumer protection efforts.
- Sex Offender Treatment Board
- Environmental Health Registration Board
- Advisory Council for Electrologists, Permanent Color Technicians and Tattoo Artists
- Advisory Council on Hearing Aids
- Board of Athletic Trainers
- Board of Direct Entry Midwifery
Also in this issue:
- OHLA's new investigative protocol
- Mandatory reporting required of licensees of four OHLA boards
- News from OHLA's largest regulated group, the Board of Cosmetology, including the board's recent adoption of OSHA rules related to products containing formaldehyde to address potential hazards of hair smoothing and straightening products
Central Issues: Sex Offender Treatment Board
Click here to access the complete Central Issues: Sex Offender Treatment Board.
- Establishing Standards for Treatment of Sex Offenders: The board, in collaboration with OHLA, established the first-ever practice standards for the profession in Oregon after initiating administrative rulemaking in March 2009. The Oregon State Legislature established the board in 2007 to provide oversight for the practice of sex offender treatment.
- Addressing Budget, Fee Issues to Sustain the Board: Due to the limited number of potential licensees and voluntary licensure, the board is facing a fiscal shortfall. With licensing fees already among the highest of OHLA-regulated professions, what can be done to keep fees from increasing while ensuring the continued operation of the board?
- Promoting Certification, County by County: As a title act, the Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS) that govern sex offender therapists do not require licensure. However, ORS 675.360(4) states that adult and juvenile parole and probation authorities and the Oregon Health Authority may restrict their referrals to those providers who are certified. So far, several counties have established certification as a requirement, including Multnomah and Lane counties.
- Proposing Legislation to Create Official Title Abbreviations: OHLA and the board are proposing legislation for 2011 to create official abbreviations for Certified Clinical Sex Offender Therapist and Certified Associate Sex Offender Therapist.
Central Issues: Environmental Health Registration Board
Click here for the complete Central Issues: Environmental Health Registration Board.
- 21st-Century Environmental Health Regulation: Is It Relevant? In an informal type of sunset review, the environmental health community has raised questions about the effectiveness and relevance of registering environmental health specialists. OHLA explores the issue with an eye on its overarching mission: public protection.
- Statutory Exemptions, Public Protection: An Ongoing Concern From employees of the Department of Environmental Quality to meat inspectors, state law allows for certain types of individuals to be exempted from registering as an environmental health specialist. Are these exemptions affecting public health and welfare or are there enough checks and balances in place to ensure public protection?
- Waste Water Specialists: Only a Handful, But Necessary Only five applicants have taken the Waste Water Specialist examination since 2006 and only 10 are registered, but this very small subset of environmental health is necessary to ensure continuing water quality and waste water treatment in Oregon.
- Board Searches for Public Member, Environmental Health Specialist: OHLA and the board are recruiting for two positions that are currently vacant on the board.
Central Issues: Advisory Council for Electrologists, Permanent Color & Tattoo
Click here for the complete Central Issues: Advisory Council for Electrologists, Permanent Color Technicians and Tattoo Artists.
- Oregon to Out-of-State Tattoo Artists: Welcome! Thanks to a regulatory and industry partnership, qualified out-of-state tattoo artists may ink the public at events such as Oregon Ink and Portland Tattoo Expo on a temporary basis.
- OHLA Responds to Unlicensed Tattoo Artists: A sharp rise in complaints related to unlicensed tattooing prompts increased OHLA investigations and enforcement activity, highlighted in an article published in Portland newspaper Willamette Week.
- Tattoo Qualifying Examination: Changes Ahead OHLA and the EPT are currently reviewing the written and skills assessment sections of the tattoo qualifying examination to ensure current and accurate examination content.
- Retail Tattoo Needle Sales: A Threat to Public Health? Selling equipment to the general public for purposes of performing procedures that require training, education and licensure is a public health and safety concern, but what can OHLA and the council do about it?
Central Issues: Advisory Council on Hearing Aids
Click here for the complete Central Issues: Advisory Council on Hearing Aids.
- How Much Training, Education Needed for Competency? Given advancements in technology and continuing developments in the hearing health field, OHLA and the Advisory Council on Hearing Aids are exploring what level of training and education should be required to ensure the competency of new applicants entering the field.
- Personal Sound Amplifiers: Hearing Aids or Not? They're much cheaper than hearing aids and advertisements claim "You'll be able to hear a pin drop from across the room." Even though disclaimers state these devices aren't hearing aids, should they be regulated as such?
- Ear Mold Fees Refundable to Consumer: OHLA has determined that contractual requirements related to hearing aid returns and refunds apply to fees associated with ear molds.
- Audiologists No Longer Must Be Licensed as Hearing Aid Specialists: Audiologists no longer must be licensed with OHLA and the Advisory Council on Hearing Aids to dispense hearing aids, but consumers can continue to expect similar contractual protections when purchasing hearing aids from audiologists.
Central Issues: Board of Athletic Trainers
Click here for the complete Central Issues: Board of Athletic Trainers.
- Concussion Care: What Can an Athletic Trainer Do? With the immediate and future health of athletes at stake, can athletic trainers return athletes to participate in sporting events after determining they have not suffered a concussion?
- Scope Spotlight: Can Athletic Trainers Treat Non-Athletes? If a drummer in a rock band develops tennis elbow, can an athletic trainer treat the drummer? Revisiting an issue that continues to generate questions about the scope of practice of athletic trainers.
- Supervising Students: How Much Is Needed for Safe Practice? From defining the type of student supervision to determining when students are practicing as athletic trainers, an update on efforts to ensure safe practice by students who are performing as athletic trainers.
- Three Questions For: Board Chair Dr. Russ Cagle With more than 30 years of experience in the profession, Cagle expounds on the benefits of regulation, the state of athletic training in Oregon, and other current issues.
Central Issues: Board of Direct Entry Midwifery
Click here for the complete Central Issues: Board of Direct Entry Midwifery.
- Addressing the Risk Factors of Home Births: From reviewing the risks of certain types of births in the home setting to the circumstances involved in transferring care of mother and baby during delivery if complications occur, OHLA and the Board of Direct Entry Midwifery have spent over a year in reviewing current regulatory requirements culminating in revisions to Oregon Administrative Rules (OAR) Chapter 332, Divisions 015-030.
- Expanding Informed Consent for Certain Birth Types: Administrative rule changes establish expanded informed consent requirements for vaginal births after cesarean (VBAC), malpresentation (also called breech, a delivery presentation in which the baby's feet, knees or buttocks come into the birth canal first, before the baby's head), multiple gestation (twins) and post-date (exceeding 42 weeks gestation) births.
- Improving the Accuracy of Statistical Reporting: Accurate and timely statistical information regarding the safety of home births is a key component of evidence-based policymaking. Administrative rule changes address how to best provide statistical information on birth outcomes, transports from the home to hospital settings, and data on specific birth types (see above).
- Making Voluntary Licensure More Palatable: While licensure for midwives in Oregon is voluntary, licensure allows midwives to obtain third-party reimbursement from the Oregon Health Plan. OHLA lowered licensing fees for midwives earlier in 2010 to reduce arguably the largest barrier to licensure.
Board of Cosmetology Adopts OSHA Rules on Products Containing Formaldehyde
A recent research report issued by the Oregon Occupational Safety and Health Division (Oregon OSHA) indicates that the use of hair smoothing and straightening products containing formaldehyde raises health and safety concerns for cosmetology practitioners.
Oregon OSHA currently has procedures and protocols in place for employers and employees using products with specific levels of formaldehyde, including formaldehyde in liquid form, sometimes known as methylene glycol.
To ensure public protection, the Board of Cosmetology has adopted temporary administrative rules by referencing current Oregon OSHA standards under OAR 437-002-0360(31).
Click here for more on the temporary rule, formaldehyde.
OHLA Adopts New Agency-wide Investigative Protocol
OHLA has established a new investigative protocol that features 28 steps and exit points depending on the status of the investigation. OHLA is implementing the new protocol immediately to clarify and streamline the process.
Click here for more on OHLA's new investigative protocol.
Licensees of Four OHLA Boards Must Report Prohibited Conduct
As the result of the passage of House Bill 2059 in the 2009 session of the Oregon State Legislature, licensees of certain state licensing boards and four boards overseen by OHLA must report unprofessional or prohibited conduct of other licensees.
Click here for more information on the reporting requirement.
Visit OHLA Web Site at www.oregon.gov/OHLA
OHLA's Web site at www.oregon.gov/OHLA offers numerous features and extensive content for licensees, consumers and other agency stakeholders.
Licensees can renew online, download applications and learn about new licensing and regulatory developments. Consumers can access public education campaign materials and other helpful resources to become more informed about OHLA-regulated professions and the agency's consumer protection activities.
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