PREPROPOSAL STATEMENT OF INQUIRY
Subject of Possible Rule Making: New chapter 246-16 WAC, Standards of professional conduct. The department is considering developing rules that will define sexual misconduct standards for credentialed health care practitioners regulated by the Secretary of Health. The department will also consider standardizing sanctions for practitioners who do engage in sexual misconduct.
Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: RCW 18.130.050 (1) and (12).
Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: Currently, most regulated health care professions have no rules defining sexual misconduct. Without rules, practitioners do not know the standards to which they are held and any disciplinary action may be inconsistent. The proposed rules will help assure clear and consistent definitions of sexual misconduct and appropriate sanctions for individuals who engage in sexual misconduct. The proposed rules may help providers avoid sexual misconduct.
Other Federal and State Agencies that Regulate this Subject and the Process Coordinating the Rule with These Agencies: None.
Process for Developing New Rule: Collaborative rule making.
Interested parties can participate in the decision to adopt the new rule and formulation of the proposed rule before publication. Public meetings will be held in various areas of the state. Written comments may be sent to Margaret Gilbert, Department of Health, P.O. Box 47873, Olympia, WA 98504-7873, phone (360) 236-4913, fax (360) 236-4930, e-mail Margaret.Gilbert@doh.wa.gov.
November 1, 2005
M. C. Selecky