WSR 00-19-092

PROPOSED RULES

DEPARTMENT OF

LABOR AND INDUSTRIES

[ Filed September 20, 2000, 10:37 a.m. ]

Original Notice.

Preproposal statement of inquiry was filed as WSR 00-16-152 on August 2, 2000.

Title of Rule: Amending WAC 296-31-069 For what reasons may independent mental health or independent medical assessments be obtained?; and new sections WAC 296-31-06901 What is required in an independent mental health evaluation report?, 296-31-06903 Who may perform independent mental health evaluations for the crime victims compensation program?, 296-31-06905 How does a provider become an approved examiner to perform independent mental health evaluation for the crime victims compensation program?, 296-31-06907 What factors does the crime victims compensation program consider in approving or removing examiners from the approved examiners list?, and 296-31-06909 Is there a fee schedule for independent mental health evaluations?

Purpose: To establish criteria for independent mental health examinations of crime victims.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 7.68.030, 51.04.030, 51.32.112, 51.32.114.

Statute Being Implemented: Chapter 7.68 RCW.

Summary: The proposed rules establish criteria for providers who want to do independent mental health examinations for the crime victims compensation program.

Reasons Supporting Proposal: The crime victims compensation program recognizes providers other than psychiatrists to treat mental health conditions of victims. These rules will allow independent evaluations by providers with victim experience and training.

Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting, Implementation and Enforcement: Cletus Nnanabu, CVC Program Manager, 7273 Linderson Way, Tumwater, WA, (360) 902-5340.

Name of Proponent: Washington State Department of Labor and Industries, governmental.

Rule is not necessitated by federal law, federal or state court decision.

Explanation of Rule, its Purpose, and Anticipated Effects: Based on input from victims, providers, and crime victim advocates the crime victims compensation program proposes rules establishing criteria for independent mental health examinations of crime victims. The program currently uses rules under the workers compensation program. Under the proposed rules victims will be better served with evaluations from providers with experience and training in crime victim issues.

Proposal does not change existing rules.

No small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW. The proposed rules will have a minimal cost impact and the benefits will be greater than the probable costs.

RCW 34.05.328 applies to this rule adoption. The rules do not meet any of the exceptions in RCW 34.05.328(5).

Hearing Location: Department of Labor and Industries, Room S119, 7273 Linderson Way S.W., Tumwater, WA, on October 25, 2000, at 1:30 p.m.

Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Jill Short by October 18, 2000, TDD (360) 902-4974, or 1-800-762-3716.

Submit Written Comments to: Valerie Estes, Crime Victims Compensation Program, P.O. Box 44520, Olympia, WA 98504-4520, e-mail ests235@lni.wa.gov, fax (360) 902-5333, by November 1, 2000.

Date of Intended Adoption: December 1, 2000.

September 20, 2000

Gary Moore

Director

OTS-4309.1


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 98-24-095, filed 12/1/98, effective 1/1/99)

WAC 296-31-069
For what reasons may the department require independent mental health or independent medical ((assessments)) evaluations be obtained?

((What is required in independent assessment reports?

(1))) Independent medical and mental health ((assessments)) evaluations may be ((obtained when requested)) required by the ((provider, or on the department's initiative,)) department for the following reasons:

(((a))) (1) To rate permanent impairment when treatment has been concluded; or

(((b))) (2) To evaluate an application to reopen a claim; or

(((c))) (3) To determine if there are conditions related to the effects of the crime or preexisting conditions aggravated by the crime for which the claim was filed ((and if treatment remains necessary for those conditions)); or

(((d))) (4) To determine if crime-related treatment is still necessary and if present treatment is effective; or

(((e))) (5) To determine if treatment is still leading to recovery; or

(((f))) (6) To obtain other information that may be necessary for the department to make decisions on the victim's claim.

(((2) Practitioners participating in an independent mental health assessment ordered by the department must provide us with a report within thirty days following the last assessment date. The report must:

(a) Be identified as an independent assessment report;

(b) Be specific and factual;

(c) Specify the mental health condition(s) and symptoms found and their relationship to the crime for which the claim was filed. Use the codes contained in the currently accepted DSM;

(d) Provide specific conclusions drawn from the assessment and state opinions that respond to the questions included in the examination request;

(e) If applicable, include the category of permanent impairment that the assessor finds most nearly describes his or her findings.

(3) Independent medical assessment reports are governed by WAC 296-23-260.))

[Statutory Authority: RCW 7.68.030, 7.68.070, 51.32.110, 51.04.020(1) and 51.04.030. 98-24-095, 296-31-069, filed 12/1/98, effective 1/1/99. Statutory Authority: RCW 7.68.030, 51.04.020(1) and 51.04.030. 95-15-004, 296-31-069, filed 7/5/95, effective 8/5/95. Statutory Authority: RCW 43.22.050. 92-23-033, 296-31-069, filed 11/13/92, effective 12/14/92.]


NEW SECTION
WAC 296-31-06901
What is required in an independent mental health evaluation report?

Practitioners participating in an independent mental health evaluation ordered by the department must provide the crime victims compensation program with a report within thirty days following the evaluation date. The report must meet the guidelines published in the Independent Mental Health Evaluators' Handbook.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 296-31-06903
Who may perform independent mental health evaluations for the crime victims compensation program?

Providers who wish to perform independent mental health evaluations for the crime victims compensation program must be approved examiners and meet the following minimum qualifications:


Counselors &sqbul; Masters or doctorate degree in a field of study related to mental health; and

&sqbul; Certified by the Washington department of health as a social worker, mental health counselor or marriage and family therapist.

Advanced registered nurse practitioners &sqbul; Licensed with the Washington department of health; and

&sqbul; Have a specialty in psychiatric and mental health nursing.

Psychologists &sqbul; Licensed with the Washington department of health; or

&sqbul; Licensed within Oregon or Idaho by that state's health care licensing authority.

Psychiatrists &sqbul; Board certified; and

&sqbul; Licensed with the Washington department of health; or

&sqbul; Licensed within Oregon or Idaho by that state's health care licensing authority.

All examiners must have &sqbul; An active practice; or

&sqbul; Be a clinical supervisor in an active practice;

&sqbul; Five years post licensure clinical experience treating crime victims; or

&sqbul; Three years clinical experience treating crime victims and two years supervising clinical work.


Note: Geographic need of the program may substitute for some of the above experience requirements.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 296-31-06905
How does a provider become an approved examiner to perform independent mental health evaluations for the crime victims compensation program?

Providers must submit a completed independent mental health evaluator application to the crime victims compensation program. Applications and standards for independent mental health evaluations are published in the Independent Mental Health Evaluators' Handbook. Approved examiners will be included on the program's approved examiners list.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 296-31-06907
What factors does the crime victims compensation program consider in approving or removing examiners from the approved examiners list?

(1) The program may consider the following in approving examiners. The list is not inclusive.

(a) Minimum qualifications established in WAC 296-31-06903;

(b) Disciplinary proceeding or actions;

(c) Experience in direct patient care and the area of specialty;

(d) Geographic need of the program.

(2) The program may consider the following in removing examiners. The list is not inclusive.

(a) Complaints about the conduct of the examiner;

(b) Disciplinary proceeding or actions;

(c) Ability to effectively convey and substantiate opinions and conclusions concerning victims;

(d) Quality and timeliness of reports;

(e) Availability and willingness to testify at the board of industrial insurance appeals if required;

(f) Acceptance of the program's fee schedule rates.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 296-31-06909
Is there a fee schedule for independent mental health evaluations?

The maximum fee schedule for performing independent mental health evaluations is published in the Independent Mental Health Evaluators' Handbook available from the crime victims compensation program.

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Washington State Code Reviser's Office