PREPROPOSAL STATEMENT OF INQUIRY
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH
(Board of Hearing and Speech)
[Filed June 12, 2019, 12:14 p.m.]
Subject of Possible Rule Making: WAC 246-828-020, 246-828-025, 246-828-04503, 246-828-075, 246-828-300 and 246-828-990 hearing and speech, the board of hearing and speech (board) is considering amending these rule sections to update examination standards, move part of a definition to a more appropriate section of rule, clarify supervision requirements, update expired license or certification requirements and establish fees for the hearing aid specialist practical examinations.
Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: RCW 18.35.161
Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: The board will consider updating examination standards and limiting how many times an applicant can retake the examination before being required to take additional coursework. The board has concerns and questions for public safety when applicants need to retake the examinations multiple times, sometimes as many as three to six times. The board wants the applicant to be competent in their scope of practice.
The board is considering a recommendation to move part of the definition of "postgraduate professional work experience" out of the definition section and move it to WAC 246-828-04503.
The board will also consider adding clarity to the supervision requirements for students, interim permit holders, and speech-language pathology assistants. This rule section is confusing as to whether it addresses all students and their supervisors or just supervisors and licensees (interim permit holders, and speech-language pathology assistants).
The board will consider updating the expired license or certification requirements. To be more flexible the board is considering adjusting the requirement of having to retake the national examination if the practitioner has not been actively practicing after three years.
The board will consider establishing fees for the hearing aid specialist (HAS) practical examination, which is required for graduates of board-approved nine month certificate programs. The HAS program was implemented by legislation in 2015 when EHB 2108 passed the legislature. Currently there is no fee set for the HAS practical examination. At the time of implementation of the program, practical examination fees were not established because HB [EHB] 2018  required the department to track all costs of the practical examinations for two years. The board is currently paying for all costs associated with the practical examination for the HAS program. After tracking and analyzing examination costs, the department and the board are ready to consider establishing appropriate fees in rule for these practical exams.
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 by contacting Kim-Boi Shadduck, Program Manager, P.O. Box 47852, Olympia WA 98504, phone 360-236-2912, fax 360-236-2901, TTY 360-833-6388 or 711, email email@example.com.
Additional comments: Rule notices will be posted on the professions main web page with a link for interested parties who may subscribe to have emailed information through GovDelivery. This can be found at https://www.doh.wa.gov/LicensesPermitsandCertificates/ProfessionsNewReneworUpdate/HearingandSpeechServices. Stakeholders will be invited to participate in board meetings and rule drafting workshops. Stakeholders will also be able to provide written and verbal comments when formal proposed rules are filed.
June 11, 2019
Lisa Illich, Chair
Board of Hearing and Speech