As the State of Ohio’s response to COVID-19/Corona Virus evolves, the Board will share information with licenses.
Communicating with the Board - in support of Governor DeWine's initiative to limit the spread of COVID-19, CSWMFT Board staff members will be working remotely until further notice. Those wishing to contact the Board are encouraged to send an e-mail. Please click HERE for a staff listing. Board staff will respond to voicemail message as quickly as possible.
Attention is focusing on the global impact of the Coronavirius. As you have questions or concerns, you will find helpful information and resources at https://odh.ohio.gov/wps/portal/gov/odh/know-our-programs/Novel-Coronavirus. Governor DeWine recently provided an update on the State of Ohio's efforts to prepare for and prevent the Coronavirius. Details on the the prevention and preparedness plan can be found at https://governor.ohio.gov/wps/portal/gov/governor/media/news-and-media/update-covid-19-prevention-and-preparedness-plan.
COVID-19 | GUIDANCE FOR OUR LICENSEES
Renewal Extension - House Bill 197
June 22, 2020
RENEWAL EXTENSION - HOUSE BILL 197
At present, all licensees with a renewal date between 3/9/2020 and 12/1/2020 have until 12/1 to renew their license and complete and report CEUs. This extension is provided under HB 197, which states that expiration dates are extended to the earlier of 12/1 or 90 days following the end of the COVID emergency. Thus, that date could change should the Governor determine the COVID emergency is over. Licensees should plan to renew their license as soon as they reasonable can. Please note the extension is not permanent. Once a licensee renews, their renewal date will return to its original date. Renewal notices will then be sent starting 90 days before the license is due to be renewed.
Pandemic Unemployment Assistance
May 15, 2020
PANDEMIC UNEMPLOYMENT ASSISTANCE
Ohioans can now apply for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), a new federal program that covers many more categories of workers than the traditional unemployment program.
Those who believe they may be eligible should visit pua.unemployment.ohio.gov and click the button that says, “Click Here to Apply for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance.” Individuals who pre-registered for the program received an email with instructions for how to complete their applications.
PUA was made possible by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The program offers up to 39 weeks of benefits to many who traditionally have not qualified for unemployment benefits, including self-employed individuals, 1099 tax filers and part-time workers. The benefit amount is similar to traditional unemployment payments, plus an additional $600 per week through July 25.
If you have additional questions, please visit www.unemploymenthelp.ohio.gov or call (833) 604-0774.
Stay at Home Order Extended Until 5/29/2020
Ohio Governor Mike DeWine today announced that the Ohio Department of Health has issued a "Stay Safe Ohio Order." The new order, which incorporates the openings of businesses and services announced as part of the Responsible RestartOhio plan, will replace the previous "Stay at Home" order, which expires at 11:59 p.m. tonight.
Ohio Governor Mike DeWine announced today that Ohio's Stay at Home order has been extended until 11:59 p.m. on May 1, 2020.
Ohio Department of Health Director Dr. Amy Acton, MD, MPH, signed the updated order this afternoon. It goes into effect at midnight on Monday.
"We understand that this is tough - it is very difficult. But, I would not be making these decisions if it wasn't a mater of life and death," said Governor DeWine. "We have to keep this monster down. It's not dead - it's very much alive."
Updates to the new order include:
- he creation of a dispute resolution process for situations where two local health departments have come to a different conclusion on what is or is not an essential business.
- The requirement that essential businesses determine and enforce a maximum number of customers allowed in a store at one time. These businesses must ensure that people waiting to enter the stores maintain safe social distancing.
- Direction that travelers arriving to Ohio should self-quarantine for 14 days. Exceptions include persons who live and work in trans-border areas, heath care workers, public health workers, public safety workers, transportation workers and designated essential workers. Visitors are instructed not to travel to Ohio if they are displaying symptoms, excepting in certain circumstances for medical care.
- The mandate that wedding receptions be limited to no more than 10 people.
- A clarification to close campgrounds with the exception where a camper or recreational vehicle in a campground serves as a citizen's permanent residence and they are unable to secure safe alternative housing.
- The requirement that public swimming pools and swimming pools at private clubs or housing complexes close to prevent transmission of COVID-19. This does not apply to private residential pools.
- The clarification that retail garden centers can remain open but should determine and enforce a reduced capacity to keep customers and employees safe.
- The closure of day camps for children.
- The prohibition of organized youth and adult sports.
- The clarification that fishing is permitted if proper social distancing is practiced.
Sunday, March 22, 2020, Department of Health Director Dr. Amy Acton issued a "Director's Order that All Persons Stay at Home Unless Engaged in Essential Work or Activity". The order directs persons in Ohio to stay at home unless engaged in essential activities as defined the order. Click HERE to read the order. You can find additional information on the Stay at Home order at https://coronavirus.ohio.gov/wps/portal/gov/covid-19/home/Stay-at-Home-Information/Stay-At-Home-Order-Frequently-Asked-Questions.
Update - Emergency Rule 4757-5-13 and HB 197
Emergency Rule 4757-5-13 – Teletherapy
Today, as the result of an Executive Order issued by Governor Mike DeWine, the CSWMFT Board filed emergency rule 4757-5-13. The rule will remain in effect until August 4, 2020. The emergency amendments to Rule 4757-5-13 expand access to teletherapy services for clients by: clarifying that no training is required prior to providing teletherapy, however, the rule does require that licensees provide services only if they can competently provide such services; it waives the requirement to hold a face to face meeting in-person or via video prior to rendering services; allows for verbal consent when written consent cannot be obtained; and it follows federal guidance regarding HIPAA compliant technology. These changes align with changes to Ohio’s Medicaid rules.
CSWMFT licensees should also review Medicaid’s Rule 5160-1-21 which covers requirements for professionals providing telehealth to Medicaid clients. See also Rule 5160-8-05 for a list of additional behavioral health professionals who may render services under Medicaid rules. Providers certified by the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services should review Rule 5122-29-31.
Many licensees are considering providing teletherapy for the first time. Some questions to ask if you are going to provide teletherapy are below. How you answer these will help you decide how best to prepare:
- Do I have the skills and competencies necessary to provide teletherapy? If the answer is no, what do I need to do to develop those skills?
- Do I have the right recordkeeping practices in place?
- Does my liability insurance allow me to provide teletherapy?
- Is my employer supportive of my doing teletherapy?
- Are insurers whom I will be billing allowing for teletherapy?
- If you are planning to continue to provide services to existing clients, who among your clients might benefit from teletherapy? Who might face challenges?
- If you are working with new clients via teletherapy, are you prepared to assess the appropriateness of video or phone therapy with the clients?
- How do you ensure equitable opportunities for all clients? Are you prepared to refer out any clients whom you cannot serve because of insurance issues, the presenting problem, or client issues with being served via video or phone?
- Do the presenting problems you often treat translate well over teletherapy?
The change to OAC Rule 4757-5-13 offers important flexibility in meeting the needs of clients. However, the code of ethics and scopes of practice remain unchanged. Licensees must continue to practice in ways that ensure client care is not compromised. An example is supervision. Licensees required to be supervised when diagnosing and treating should be receiving supervision regularly as required in the rules. Supervision can occur via video or over the phone.
Many licensees have asked about resources for teletherapy. Check out the Board’s COVID-19 response page for links to resources. Those interested in taking continuing education about teletherapy should visit the CE Broker website at https://courses.cebroker.com/search and search for courses using the term “telehealth”. Licensees are particularly encouraged to review the guidance provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that can be found at https://www.hhs.gov/hipaa/for-professionals/special-topics/hipaa-covid19/index.html.
House Bill 197
On March 27, Governor Mike DeWine signed House Bill 197 which provides emergency relief to Ohioans during the COVID-19 pandemic. One provision of the legislation states that no license issued by State government can be considered "expired" between March 9, 2020 through the earlier of 90 days following the end of the emergency or 12/1/2020. This provision applies to all licenses and registrations, including trainee registrations, issued by the Board. CSWMFT Board staff is working closely with its IT partners to make necessary adjustments to the eLicense system. Licensees will be provided additional information and guidance regarding the implications of this legislation soon.
Click this link to read the emergency teletherapy rule: Emergency Rule 4757-5-13
Helpful Guidance on the Use of Asynchronous Telehealth Modalities
ODM and OhioMHAS have released a MITS BITS newsletter regarding the use of asynchronous telehealth modalities. such as email or text. The Guidance, which is aligned with the Board's telehealth rule, can be found at https://bh.medicaid.ohio.gov/Portals/0/Providers/MITS%20Bits/2020/BH-MITS-Bits_04-22-2020_Guidance_on_the_Use_of_Asynchronous_Telehealth_Modalities.pdf?ver=2020-04-22-121011-653.
Do you need help?
The COVID CareLine is a new, toll-free number and emotional support call service created by the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services. Behavioral health professionals will staff the CareLine from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., 7 days/week. They will offer confidential support in times of personal crisis when individuals may be struggling to cope with current challenges in their lives. After 8 p.m., the CareLine will forward to the National Suicide Prevention Helpline, allowing those calling to have access to someone 24 hours/day.
CALL 1-800-720-9616 TO CONNECT
Test Center Update - ASWB and NBCC Exam Candidates
April 23, 2020
Pearson Vue, the test center administrator used by both ASWB and NBCC to offer exam has announced that it is opening a limited number of test centers starting May 1. Seating will be limited. Persons who wish to take an exam must follow the guidance found at https://home.pearsonvue.com/coronavirus-update. Pearson Vue has also shared information regarding safety precautions it expects exam candidate to follow when they arrive at the test center.
Wellness Resources for Providers
You are working hard to care for others, be sure to care for yourself as well. OhioMHAS has made available a toolkit of resources for those providing care and those who support them. Go to https://mha.ohio.gov/…/Training-and-Wo…/COVID19-BH-Resources for more information.
Out of State Mental Health Professionals/ Providing Services to Existing Clients Temporarily in Ohio
The Ohio CSWMFT Board is aware that many colleges and universities have asked students to return home temporarily as a response to COVID-19. Other persons may also be returning to Ohio, from an out of state work assignments, for example. In some cases, these persons are receiving services from Counselors, Social Workers, and MFTs in the states in which they were residing before returning to Ohio. Please click HERE for additional guidance for out of state professionals interested in providing services to clients temporarily located in Ohio.
The Ohio Council - COVID Resources
The Ohio Council of Behavioral Health and Family Services Providers ("The Ohio Council") has dedicated its March newsletter to highlighting COVID-19 resources. The information below is shared with the permission of the The Ohio Council.
Front Line Resources - Trauma Informed Care
Below are resources that will be helpful for those providing care during the COVID-19 response. An emphasis is placed on resources to help those providing direct care.
Resources for Local Health Districts, Local Governments, and Providers
Resources for Healthcare Workers
Trauma-informed Care Resource Library
D eBased Academy – one-hour webinar Trauma-Informed Approaches – already CEU approved including Recognition Award for CMEs
The Trauma Informed Approaches course focuses on SAMHSA's four R's concept of trauma informed care: Realize, Recognize, Respond, and Resist.
- Recognize what trauma is and its impact.
- Identify trauma informed responses.
- Identify strategies to avoid re-traumatizing victims.
- AMA PRA Cat. 1 Credit: 1.0
- RN/LPN Contact CE: 1.25
- Counselor CPEs: 1.25
- Social Work CPEs: 1.25
- Psychologists MCEs: 1.25
- Number of CEUs: 1.25
Awarded 1.0-hour AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ toward the AMA Physician’s Recognition Award for completing this CME activity
COUNSELOR EDUCATION CLASSIFICATIONS: 1.25 R1 – Field Related Other
E eBased Academy – one-hour video Secondary Trauma for Administrators – already CEU approved including recognition Award for CMEs
This course is part of a 23-course curricula series developed by expert healthcare professionals to educate a variety of disciplines about drug addiction and its impact. The Secondary Trauma for Administrators/Organization Transformation course provides an in-depth look at secondary traumatic stress (STS) and its impact on organizations and the workforce. This course is designed to educate organizations about building resiliency, post-traumatic growth and the benefits of becoming an STS-informed organization. A case study is examined to help learners further understand best practices to becoming STS-informed.
1. Define secondary traumatic stress (STS) and its impact on organizations and the workforce.
2. Understand the benefits and best practices of becoming an STS informed organization.
3. Identify strategies to encourage post-traumatic growth and building resiliency.
- RN/LPN Contact CE: 1.0
- Counselor CPEs: 1.0
- Social Work CPEs: 1.0
- Psychologists MCEs: 1.0
- Number of CEUs: 1.0
Awarded 1.0-hour AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ toward the AMA Physician’s Recognition Award for completing this CME activity
COUNSELOR EDUCATION CLASSIFICATIONS: 1.00 R1 – Field Related Other
PREVENTION EDUCATION CLASSIFICATIONS: 1.00 R1 – Field Related Other
F Center for Health Care Strategies
Trauma-Informed care Implementation Resource Center
- What is trauma?
- What is trauma-informed care?
- Trauma-informed care in action
- Becoming trauma-informed
- Policy considerations
G SAMHSAs TIP 57 Trauma-Informed Care in Behavioral Health Service (PDF)
This manual helps behavioral health professionals understand the impact of trauma on those who experience it. The manual discusses patient assessment, and treatment planning strategies. These strategies support recovery and building a trauma-informed care workforce. Access the literature review.
H SAMHSAs Trauma-Informed Care in Behavioral Health Services: Quick Guide for Clinicians Based on TIP 57 (PDF)
This guide has information for providers and administrators on caring for people who have experienced trauma or are at risk of developing traumatic stress reactions. It also addresses prevention, intervention, and treatment issues and strategies
I Trauma and Post Traumatic Stress Disorders in Ethnic Minorities
American Psychological Association
Trauma Informed Principles Through a Culturally Specific Lens (PDF)
National Latino Network
J Addressing Adverse Childhood Experiences and Other Types of Trauma in the Primary Care Setting Trauma Toolbox for Primary Care
American Academy of Pediatrics
K Self-Care for Social Workers During the Coronavirus Pandemic (Podcast)
Links to Resources
State of Ohio Resources
AMHCA Code of Ethics http://www.nymhca.org/AMHCACodeofEthics.pdf
NASW Ohio Chapter - https://www.naswoh.org/page/telehealth2020
Marriage and Family Therapy
American Telemedicine Association - http://www.americantelemed.org/resources/telemedicine-practice-guidelines/telemedicine-practice-guidelines#.VS_Go40tGUk
Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Update - Exam Candidates and Social Workers
Effective Date 03/20/2020
To help contain the spread of COVID-19, ASWB staff will be working remotely until it is determined safe to resume regular on-site business operations based on guidance provided by local authorities and government agencies.
Although we are not taking phone calls at this time, we are still available to assist you. Please email your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org. We are responding to inquiries as quickly as possible.
Thank you for your understanding and patience as we work to assist you, other candidates, and member boards while maintaining a safe working environment for our staff.
National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) - Update for Students Planning on Taking the NCE or NCMHCE
In an effort to prioritize the safety of staff and testing candidates, Pearson VUE recently announced that they will be suspending test delivery at all U.S.- and Canada-based Pearson VUE testing centers effective immediately until April 16.
Though we know that this news is likely disheartening for all of you who have been diligently preparing to complete your exams, we trust that the decision Pearson VUE has made will help keep our communities safe and hopefully healthy.
During this time, please continue to study and prepare, and when the testing centers reopen, be assured that your exams will be waiting for you. We will continue to provide updates regarding available testing windows.
Please note that you will receive an authorization to test email from Pearson VUE within the time period that they will be closed. It is imperative that you read this email. It will contain the necessary information for you to schedule your exam after their facilities’ anticipated reopening on April 16.
We are making every attempt to keep everyone safe while also providing the best possible service in this tumultuous time. We appreciate your patience and understanding.
Ohio Approved for SBA Economic Injury Loans
Ohio Governor Mike DeWine and Lt. Governor Jon Husted announced that the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has approved the Ohio Development Services Agency’s request to allow small businesses and nonprofits in Ohio to apply for low-interest, long-term loans of up to $2 million through the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program.
The Economic Injury Disaster Loans may be used by Ohio small business owners and nonprofits to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact. The interest rate is 3.75 percent for small businesses without credit available elsewhere; businesses with credit available elsewhere are not eligible. The interest rate for nonprofits is 2.75 percent.
To keep payments affordable, the loans are long term, with up to 30 years for repayment. Terms are determined on a case-by-case basis, based on each borrower’s ability to repay.
Applying for the SBA loan:
- Loan applications can be completed online at disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/ or applicants can obtain a paper application by calling 1-800-659-2955. Online submissions are recommended.
- Once an application has been submitted, the SBA will review the information and determine eligibility.
- Once the SBA approves an applicant’s submission, they will close on the loan and the cash will be deposited into the applicant’s account.
- To expedite the application process, applicants should have the following documents ready: complete copies of their most recent federal income tax return and a completed and signed IRS Form 4506T, a schedule of liabilities, personal financial statement, monthly sales figures, a current year-to-date profit-and-loss statement, and a year-end profit-and-loss statement and balance sheet for that tax year if the most recent federal income tax return has not been filed.
For more information about the loan program, visit SBA.gov/Disaster.
As efforts to combat the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus continue, Governor DeWine and his administration will continue to identify ways to support the state’s small businesses and nonprofits. Any of these entities impacted by the ongoing health crisis are encouraged to contact the Development Services Agency at BusinessHelp@Development.Ohio.Gov for more information.
Executive Order 2020-03D broadens state policy to clarify that individuals who are quarantined during the emergency period are considered to be unemployed. This also applies to companies that determine they need to temporarily shut down.
The executive order waives the one-week waiting period normally required before individuals can begin receiving benefits, and it waives the requirement that they actively search for work while receiving benefits. In order not to penalize employers by increasing their future taxes, the cost of these benefits will be mutualized over time. In addition, the executive order waives penalties for late filing and payment for the duration of the emergency.
To help protect the public against the spread of COVID-19, Governor Mike DeWine and Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Acton, M.D., MPH, strongly recommend that all employers screen employees each day before work by following these steps:
- All employees who are able to work from home should be working from home at this time
- For those employees who have to come in: each employee should have their temperature taken each day, and if they have a fever at or above 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit, that employee should be sent home.
- This employee can return to work when:
- They have had NO fever for at least three (3) days without taking medication to reduce fever during that time; AND
- There is improvement in their respiratory system (cough and shortness of breath); AND
- At least seven (7) days have passed since their symptoms began.
- It is best to use touchless thermometers if possible (forehead/temporal artery thermometers), but if you must use oral or other types of thermometers, make sure to clean the thermometer thoroughly between each employee, as to not spread infection.
- Follow the manufacturer’s direction to disinfect the thermometer.
- If no directions are available, rinse the tip of the thermometer in cold water, clean it with alcohol or alcohol swabs, and then rinse it again.
- This employee can return to work when:
- If you do not have thermometers on site, have your employees take their temperature at home. They should stay home if they have a fever and follow the same protocol.
- There is currently a shortage on thermometers. If you cannot find thermometers, and employees do not have one at home to check their temperature, you can screen each incoming employee with a basic questionnaire.
- Do you have symptoms of respiratory infection? (fever, cough, shortness of breath)
- No - proceed to work
- Yes – Employee will be sent home. Employee is required to stay home at least 7 days from the time they experienced symptoms AND at least 3 days after they have no fever (without taking medication to reduce fever) AND have improvement in their respiratory symptoms (cough, shortness of breath).
- Does not require a doctor’s release.
- Do you have symptoms of respiratory infection? (fever, cough, shortness of breath)
- Have you been exposed to someone with confirmed COVID-19?
- No – proceed to work
- Yes, and not experiencing symptoms – employee will be required to stay at home for 14 days from the time they were exposed to confirmed COVID-19
- Yes, and exhibiting symptoms – employee is required to stay home for at least 7 days from the time they experienced symptoms AND at least three days after they have no fever (without taking medication to reduce fever) AND have improvement in their respiratory symptoms (cough, shortness of breath).
- Please remember to continue to follow preventative measures no matter how many employees are in the office – physical distancing, stay home when sick, use cough and sneeze etiquette, and practice hand hygiene as often as possible. Clean all high-touch surfaces regularly.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
ONLINE: Please visit www.Coronavirus.Ohio.gov for the most up-to-date information from the Ohio Department of Health.
PHONE: For any questions you have about COVID-19, please call 1 (833) 4-ASK-ODH from 9:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m (7 days/week).
SOCIAL MEDIA: @GovMikeDeWine
DAILY UPDATES: Governor DeWine is holding daily press briefings at 2:00
p.m. to deliver the most recent updates as well as give updated guidance for the state’s response. These press events are carried live at www.OhioChannel.org.
To apply for benefits, visit unemployment.ohio.gov anytime day or night, or call 1-877-644-6562 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays.
Face to Face Supervision of Counselor Trainees
OAC Rule 4757-17-01 requires that trainees have “face to face” supervision. To ensure supervision is as accessible as possible, supervision of Trainees can occur via telephone if that is the best means of providing supervision.
Trainees and Interns - Teletherapy
Can Trainees provide teletherapy?
Yes. There are no laws or rules that prohibit a Trainee from providing teletherapy. Registered Trainees (CT, SWT, MFTT) have the same scope of practice as a LPC, LSW, or MFT. They can diagnose and treat under supervision both in person and via teletherapy. It is up to the education program and Trainee’s internship/practicum site to determine whether a Trainee can provide teletherapy.
What happens if a college or university suspends classes? How does that impact Trainees?
Any Trainee whose college or university suspends classes must determine whether they are allowed, according to the institution, to continue reporting to their internship/practicum site. If the answer is yes, the Trainee can continue to provide services under supervision as they were doing before the suspension of classes. However, if the Trainee is required by their institution to suspend reporting to their internship/practicum site and serving clients, the Trainee, working with their supervisor should appropriately terminate with any clients in accordance with ORC 4757 and OAC 4757.
How does a suspension of classes impact interns who are not Trainees?
Interns are exempted from ORC 4757 if they are enrolled in a program of education. However, since the intern is providing services as part of a program of education in Counseling, Social Work, or Marriage and Family Therapy, they should work closely with their site supervisor to ensure that clients are not abandoned and an appropriate plan for continuity of care is established, which could include terminating and referring out the clients.
Teletherapy and Corona Virus Preparedness
COVID-19/Corona Virus Preparedness
As the State of Ohio responds to the COVID-19/Corona Virus, you may have questions regarding your options as a professional working closely with people. The Ohio Department of Health has established a website with a range of information regarding COVID-19 including updates on the State’s current response as well as information on prevention and preparation. Click here to navigate to the ODH COVID-19 web page.
Licensees have specifically asked the Board about providing services in person or via teletherapy in the face of the current health challenge. Individual practitioners, agencies, and practices that do not yet have policies that encourage clients to cancel when they unwell are recommended to establish such policies. Whenever possible, clients should be provided with as much flexibility as possible to ensure they are making decisions in the interests of the public health.