PREPROPOSAL STATEMENT OF INQUIRY
Subject of Possible Rule Making: Vocational rehabilitation referrals: WAC 296-19A-050, 296-19A-065, 296-19A-090, 296-19A-110, and 296-19A-120.
Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: RCW 51.04.020, 51.04.030, 51.32.095, 51.36.100, 51.36.110.
Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: The purpose of this rule making is to investigate the potential for conflict of interest problems to occur when vocational rehabilitation counselors make recommendations for additional rehabilitation services. For instance, potential conflict of interest problems may occur when a vocational rehabilitation counselor performs an ability to work assessment that determines whether a worker is eligible for further vocational services.
It is also intended to incorporate a change to the reporting requirements in plan implementation referrals when the plan is terminated before the worker is employable.
Other Federal and State Agencies that Regulate this Subject and the Process Coordinating the Rule with These Agencies: No other federal or state agencies regulate this subject.
Process for Developing New Rule: The department will use focus groups with subject matter experts to investigate the potential problem and possible solutions. Labor and industries' health services analysis (HSA) section will solicit suggestions from subject matter experts through its private sector vocational-technical stakeholder group and its own vocational services consultants.
Interested parties can participate in the decision to adopt the new rule and formulation of the proposed rule before publication. The department will convene informal focus groups of subject matter experts. Interested persons may contact Blake Maresh, Manager of Program Analysis and Development, Health Services Analysis, Department of Labor and Industries, P.O. Box 44322, Olympia, WA 98504-4322, phone (360) 902-6564, fax (360) 902-4249, e-mail email@example.com.
August 19, 2003