Senate Bill sb2224

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    Florida Senate - 2005                                  SB 2224

    By Senator Klein


  1                      A bill to be entitled

  2         An act relating to genetic counselors; creating

  3         part XV of ch. 468, F.S., the "Genetic

  4         Counseling Practice Act"; providing a popular

  5         name; providing legislative purpose and intent;

  6         providing definitions; requiring licensure to

  7         practice genetic counseling; providing

  8         exemptions; creating the Board of Genetic

  9         Counselors and providing for appointment and

10         staggering of terms of its members; requiring

11         the board to adopt rules; providing licensure

12         requirements; providing for biennial renewal of

13         licensure; providing for continuing education;

14         providing fees; prohibiting certain acts;

15         providing penalties; providing grounds for

16         disciplinary action; providing for denial of

17         licensure or imposition of other disciplinary

18         actions authorized by law; amending s. 20.43,

19         F.S.; creating the Board of Genetic Counselors

20         within the Division of Medical Quality

21         Assurance in the Department of Health; amending

22         s. 456.001, F.S.; redefining the term "health

23         care practitioner" to include persons licensed

24         under part XV of ch. 468, F.S.; providing an

25         effective date.


27  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:


29         Section 1.  Part XV of chapter 468, Florida Statutes,

30  consisting of sections 468.901, 468.902, 468.903, 468.904,



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    Florida Senate - 2005                                  SB 2224

 1  468.905, 468.906, 468.907, 468.908, 468.909, 468.911, 468.912,

 2  and 468.913, is created to read:

 3                             PART XV

 4                        GENETIC COUNSELORS

 5         468.901  Popular name.--This part may be cited as the

 6  "Genetic Counseling Practice Act."

 7         468.902  Purpose and intent.--The sole legislative

 8  purpose in enacting this part is to ensure that every genetic

 9  counselor practicing in this state meets minimum requirements

10  for safe practice. It is the legislative intent that genetic

11  counselors who fall below minimum competency or who otherwise

12  present a danger to the public shall be prohibited from

13  practicing in this state. This part does not require payment

14  from insurers for genetic counseling services. This act does

15  not apply to counselors who do not identify or advertise

16  themselves as genetic counselors and who do not provide

17  genetic risk assessment, diagnosis and interpretation of

18  family history, and genetic test results.

19         468.903  Definitions.--As used in this part, the term:

20         (1)  "Board" means the Board of Genetic Counselors.

21         (2)  "Department" means the Department of Health.

22         (3)  "Genetic counselor" means a person licensed under

23  this part to practice genetic counseling.

24         (4)  "Practice of genetic counseling" means, for

25  remuneration, the communication process that deals with the

26  human problems associated with the occurrence, or the risk of

27  occurrence, of a genetic disorder in a family, including the

28  provision of services to help an individual or family:

29         (a)  Comprehend the medical facts, including the

30  diagnosis, the probable cause of the disorder, and the

31  available management of the disorder.


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    Florida Senate - 2005                                  SB 2224

 1         (b)  Appreciate the way heredity contributes to the

 2  disorder and the risk of occurrence in specified relatives.

 3         (c)  Understand the alternatives for dealing with the

 4  risk of occurrence.

 5         (d)  Choose the course of action which seems

 6  appropriate to them in view of their risk, their family goals,

 7  and their ethical and religious standards, and to act in

 8  accordance with that decision.

 9         (e)  Make the best possible psychosocial adjustment to

10  the disorder in an affected family member or to the risk of

11  occurrence of that disorder.

12         468.904  License required.--A person may not practice

13  genetic counseling or hold himself or herself out as a genetic

14  counselor or as being able to practice genetic counseling or

15  to render genetic counseling services in the state unless he

16  or she is licensed in accordance with this part.

17         468.905  Exemptions.--This part does not apply to:

18         (1)  Commissioned medical officers of the Armed Forces

19  of the United States and of the Public Health Service of the

20  United States while on active duty and while acting within the

21  scope of their military or public health responsibilities.

22         (2)  A health care practitioner defined in s. 456.001

23  who is practicing within the scope of the health care

24  practitioner's license and who is doing work of a nature

25  consistent with his or her training and licensure.

26         468.906  Board of Genetic Counselors.--

27         (1)  The Board of Genetic Counselors is created within

28  the department and shall consist of five members, to be

29  appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Senate.

30         (2)  Three members of the board must be licensed

31  genetic counselors who are residents of the state. The


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    Florida Senate - 2005                                  SB 2224

 1  remaining two members must be residents of the state who are

 2  not, and have never been, licensed as genetic counselors or

 3  members of any closely related profession.

 4         (3)(a)  For the purpose of staggering terms, the

 5  Governor shall appoint the initial members of the board as

 6  follows:

 7         1.  One licensee member and one consumer member for

 8  terms of 2 years each.

 9         2.  One licensee member and one consumer member for

10  terms of 3 years each.

11         3.  One licensee member for a term of 4 years.

12         (b)  As the terms of the members expire, the Governor

13  shall appoint successors for terms of 4 years, and such

14  members shall serve until their successors are appointed.

15         (4)  All provisions of chapter 456 relating to the

16  board shall apply.

17         468.907  Authority to adopt rules.--The board shall

18  adopt rules pursuant to ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54 to

19  administer the provisions of this part conferring duties on

20  it, including rules relating to standards of practice for

21  genetic counselors.

22         468.908  Licensure requirements; temporary license.--

23         (1)  Any person desiring to be licensed as a genetic

24  counselor under this part must apply to the department on a

25  form approved by the department.

26         (2)  The department shall license each applicant who:

27         (a)  Has completed the application form and remitted

28  the required fees.

29         (b)  Is of good moral character.

30         (c)  Provides satisfactory documentation of having

31  earned:


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    Florida Senate - 2005                                  SB 2224

 1         1.  A master's degree from a genetic counseling

 2  training program or an equivalent program as determined by the

 3  American Board of Genetic Counseling; or

 4         2.  A doctoral degree from a medical genetics training

 5  program that is accredited by the American Board of Medical

 6  Genetics.

 7         (d)  Has passed the examination for certification as:

 8         1.  A genetic counselor by the American Board of

 9  Genetic Counseling or the American Board of Medical Genetics;

10  or

11         2.  A medical or clinical geneticist by the American

12  Board of Medical Genetics.

13         (3)  The department may issue a temporary license to an

14  applicant who meets all of the requirements for licensure

15  except the examination requirement in this section and has

16  obtained active candidate status establishing eligibility to

17  sit for the next available certification exam administered by

18  the American Board of Genetic Counseling.

19         468.909  Renewal of license; continuing education.--

20         (1)  The department shall renew a license upon receipt

21  of the renewal application and fee set by the board, not to

22  exceed $600.

23         (2)  The board may by rule prescribe continuing

24  education requirements and approve course criteria, not to

25  exceed 30 hours biennially, as a condition for license

26  renewal. The board shall establish a procedure for approving

27  continuing education courses and providers, and may set a fee

28  for continuing education courses and provider approval.

29         468.911  Fees.--

30         (1)  The board shall by rule establish fees for the

31  following purposes:


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    Florida Senate - 2005                                  SB 2224

 1         (a)  An application fee, not to exceed $100.

 2         (b)  An initial licensure fee, not to exceed $600.

 3         (c)  A biennial renewal fee, not to exceed $600.

 4         (d)  An inactive fee, not to exceed $100.

 5         (e)  A delinquent fee, not to exceed $100.

 6         (f)  A reactivation fee, not to exceed $100.

 7         (g)  A voluntary inactive fee, not to exceed $100.

 8         (2)  The board shall establish fees at a level, not to

 9  exceed the statutory fee cap, which is adequate to ensure the

10  continued operation of the regulatory program under this part.

11  The board may not set or maintain the fees at a level that

12  will substantially exceed this need.

13         468.912  Prohibitions; penalties.--

14         (1)  A person may not:

15         (a)  Make a false or fraudulent statement in any

16  application, affidavit, or statement presented to the board or

17  in any proceeding before the board.

18         (b)  Practice genetic counseling without a license

19  issued under this part unless exempt from licensure under this

20  part.

21         (c)  Use the title "genetic counselor" or any other

22  title or designation tending to indicate that the person is a

23  genetic counselor or is otherwise authorized to practice

24  genetic counseling unless that person has a current license as

25  a genetic counselor issued under this part or is exempt from

26  licensure under this part.

27         (2)  A person who violates any provision of this

28  section commits a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable

29  as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

30         468.913  Grounds for disciplinary action.--



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    Florida Senate - 2005                                  SB 2224

 1         (1)  The following acts constitute grounds for denial

 2  of a license or disciplinary action, as specified in s.

 3  456.072(2):

 4         (a)  Attempting to procure a license to practice

 5  genetic counseling by fraudulent misrepresentation.

 6         (b)  Having a license to practice genetic counseling

 7  revoked, suspended, or otherwise acted against, including the

 8  denial of licensure in another jurisdiction.

 9         (c)  Being convicted or found guilty of or pleading

10  nolo contendere to, regardless of adjudication, in any

11  jurisdiction, a crime that directly relates to the practice of

12  genetic counseling, including a violation of federal laws or

13  regulations regarding genetic counseling.

14         (d)  Filing a report or record that the licensee knows

15  is false, intentionally or negligently failing to file a

16  report or record required by state or federal law, willfully

17  impeding or obstructing such filing, or inducing another

18  person to impede or obstruct such filing. Such reports or

19  records include only reports or records that are signed in a

20  person's capacity as a licensee under this act.

21         (e)  Advertising goods or services related to genetic

22  counseling in a fraudulent, false, deceptive, or misleading

23  manner.

24         (f)  Violating an order of the board or department

25  previously entered in a disciplinary hearing or failing to

26  comply with a subpoena issued by the board or the department.

27         (g)  Practicing with a revoked, suspended, or inactive

28  license.

29         (h)  Gross or repeated malpractice or the failure to

30  deliver genetic counseling services with that level of care

31  and skill which is recognized by a reasonably prudent licensed


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    Florida Senate - 2005                                  SB 2224

 1  practitioner with similar professional training as being

 2  acceptable under similar conditions and circumstances.

 3         (i)  Unprofessional conduct, which includes, but is not

 4  limited to, any departure from, or the failure to conform to,

 5  the minimum standards of acceptable and prevailing genetic

 6  counseling practice as set forth by the board in rules adopted

 7  pursuant to this part, including:

 8         1.  Engaging in any act or practice in a professional

 9  capacity which the licensee is not competent to perform

10  through training or experience.

11         2.  Failing to refer a client to other competent

12  professionals when the licensee is unable or unwilling to

13  adequately support or serve the client.

14         3.  Failing to maintain the confidentiality of any

15  information received from a client, unless released by the

16  client or otherwise authorized or required by law.

17         4.  Exploiting a client for personal advantage, profit,

18  or interest.

19         (j)  Violating any provision of this part or chapter

20  456, or any rules adopted pursuant thereto.

21         (2)  The board may enter an order denying licensure or

22  imposing any of the penalties in s. 456.072(2) against any

23  applicant for licensure or licensee who is found guilty of

24  violating any provision of subsection (1) or who is found

25  guilty of violating any provision of s. 456.072(1).

26         Section 2.  Paragraph (g) of subsection (3) of section

27  20.43, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:

28         20.43  Department of Health.--There is created a

29  Department of Health.

30         (3)  The following divisions of the Department of

31  Health are established:


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    Florida Senate - 2005                                  SB 2224

 1         (g)  Division of Medical Quality Assurance, which is

 2  responsible for the following boards and professions

 3  established within the division:

 4         1.  The Board of Acupuncture, created under chapter

 5  457.

 6         2.  The Board of Medicine, created under chapter 458.

 7         3.  The Board of Osteopathic Medicine, created under

 8  chapter 459.

 9         4.  The Board of Chiropractic Medicine, created under

10  chapter 460.

11         5.  The Board of Podiatric Medicine, created under

12  chapter 461.

13         6.  Naturopathy, as provided under chapter 462.

14         7.  The Board of Optometry, created under chapter 463.

15         8.  The Board of Nursing, created under part I of

16  chapter 464.

17         9.  Nursing assistants, as provided under part II of

18  chapter 464.

19         10.  The Board of Pharmacy, created under chapter 465.

20         11.  The Board of Dentistry, created under chapter 466.

21         12.  Midwifery, as provided under chapter 467.

22         13.  The Board of Speech-Language Pathology and

23  Audiology, created under part I of chapter 468.

24         14.  The Board of Nursing Home Administrators, created

25  under part II of chapter 468.

26         15.  The Board of Occupational Therapy, created under

27  part III of chapter 468.

28         16.  Respiratory therapy, as provided under part V of

29  chapter 468.

30         17.  Dietetics and nutrition practice, as provided

31  under part X of chapter 468.


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    Florida Senate - 2005                                  SB 2224

 1         18.  The Board of Athletic Training, created under part

 2  XIII of chapter 468.

 3         19.  The Board of Orthotists and Prosthetists, created

 4  under part XIV of chapter 468.

 5         20.  The Board of Genetic Counselors, created under

 6  part XV of chapter 468.

 7         21.20.  Electrolysis, as provided under chapter 478.

 8         22.21.  The Board of Massage Therapy, created under

 9  chapter 480.

10         23.22.  The Board of Clinical Laboratory Personnel,

11  created under part III of chapter 483.

12         24.23.  Medical physicists, as provided under part IV

13  of chapter 483.

14         25.24.  The Board of Opticianry, created under part I

15  of chapter 484.

16         26.25.  The Board of Hearing Aid Specialists, created

17  under part II of chapter 484.

18         27.26.  The Board of Physical Therapy Practice, created

19  under chapter 486.

20         28.27.  The Board of Psychology, created under chapter

21  490.

22         29.28.  School psychologists, as provided under chapter

23  490.

24         30.29.  The Board of Clinical Social Work, Marriage and

25  Family Therapy, and Mental Health Counseling, created under

26  chapter 491.

27         Section 3.  Subsection (4) of section 456.001, Florida

28  Statutes, is amended to read:

29         456.001  Definitions.--As used in this chapter, the

30  term:



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    Florida Senate - 2005                                  SB 2224

 1         (4)  "Health care practitioner" means any person

 2  licensed under chapter 457; chapter 458; chapter 459; chapter

 3  460; chapter 461; chapter 462; chapter 463; chapter 464;

 4  chapter 465; chapter 466; chapter 467; part I, part II, part

 5  III, part V, part X, part XIII, or part XIV, or part XV of

 6  chapter 468; chapter 478; chapter 480; part III or part IV of

 7  chapter 483; chapter 484; chapter 486; chapter 490; or chapter

 8  491.

 9         Section 4.  This act shall take effect October 1, 2005.
























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