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The Michigan Association of Professional Psychologists' goal is to represent the professional and business interests of all master-level licensed psychologists in the state of Michigan. We advocate for the professional recognition of those individuals who practice in the state, as well as promote parity with other mental health professionals. Our focus is to ensure that the people of Michigan receive the best quality of mental health services available.

Michigan Senate Bill 273

Below are examples of misinformation being circulated regarding SB273 and the factual information in response as compiled by the MAPP Board of Directors.  Please share this information with any/all LLP's.  If you should hear additional misinformation or have any questions please feel free to contact us at (248) 869-0065 or via email info@emapp.org

MISPERCEPTIONS

Senate Bill 273

Misperception No.1. 
LLPs (Limited Licensed Psychologists) will be grandfathered into the LPA (Licensed Psychological Associate), but will have to take the EPPP (Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology)

Valid?  NO.

Current LLPs will NOT have to take the EPPP in order to be grandfathered.  Also, the LLP can be kept by those who wish to, but will continue practice under the current supervision requirements.  No new LLPs will be issued once the bill is passed.

Misinformation No. 2. 
Insurances will not pay the LPA. 

Valid? No.

This issue will be the focus of meetings between MAPP and MPA with insurance carriers as soon as the bill is passed.  We are hopeful about getting direct third-party reimbursements due to the fact that other states who have the independent LPA are engaging in third party reimbursements without a problem.  LPAs are in fact better trained in therapy and diagnosis and direct therapy than others in Michigan who already have PIN numbers for billing.  If this prospect were in fact not possible, MAPP would not have bothered with the bill and five years of working and planning that have been invested.  Nationally, Medicare (who sets the standards) is currently opening up to more master-level practitioners with independent licenses, and we want LPAs to be eligible when this happens. 

Misinformation No. 3. 
6000 hours of supervised practice after graduation.

Valid? Yes.

The supervision requirement has been decreased to 6000 hours over 3 years, rather than the current requirement for lifetime supervision.  In other states, the residency requirements were reviewed, and they ranged from 2000 to 10,000.  It was felt that when the LPA has the ability to engage in independent practice, that those practitioners have been well educated and well trained.  This will actually strengthen the LPA license.  Activities that count toward the 6000 hours will be determined when the rules are established (input about this is desired).  It is likely that the covered activities will be similar to the current rules.  

Misinformation No. 4. 
Our advertising will be restricted.

Valid? No.

 The LPA will be able to freely advertise without the restrictions placed on the LLPs who cannot advertise unless his/her supervisor advertises on his/her behalf.  LPA advertising guidelines will be the same as the LPs.  LPAs will use our own names and degrees and licensing information.

Misinformation  No. 5. 
LPAs will not be able to engage in testing/assessments.

Valid? No, No, No.

We can continue to do testing just as we are doing it now.  Under the LPA, we can test  and any reports or evaluations we write will be cosigned and supervised by an LP.  No difference from now.  We can give opinions or go to court or whatever we do now and be able to receive reimbursement independently for it. 

Misinformation No. 6. 
Supervision requirements will change for public/government settings. 

Valid?  No.

How supervision is conducted for LLPs/LPAs in State/government and non-profit organizatios will remain the same.  The current waiver of the supervision requirement for the public and non-profit sectors will remain unchanged.

Misinformation No. 7. 
The LPA license will reduce job opportunities.

Valid?  No.

Independent practice (under any title) will attract job opportunities.  There have been many LLPs who have worked in the public sector, then wanted to move to the private sector and have been refused jobs due to the supervision requirement.  Thus, they have been “job locked”.  The independent license will allow broader opportunities and allow LPAs to compete on a level playing field with other master-level practitioners. Finally, LPAs will be able to access private, public and non-profit settings equally.    

Misinformation No. 8. 
Because of the 6000 hour residency, fewer graduate students will choose to go into Psychology.

Valid?  No.

According to our meetings with graduate school program directors, and according to feedback from many students themselves, it is clear that the choice to NOT go into psychology was based on the eternal supervision problem and the restricted work possibilities.  The psychology program directors are encouraged that the independent license, regardless of the residency hours, will attract more people who want to be trained in psychology.  They feel it will attract more and better qualified students.

We have heard from students whose hearts are in psychology, and they know they will be better trained in psychology programs, but for career purposes have opted for other graduate programs just because of the eternal supervision problem.  Independent practice will solve this dilemma for them.  Independent practice under the LPA will remove the barrier for many prospective students.  

Misinformation No. 9. 
Senate Bill 273 increases the amount of regulation.

Valid?  No.

Senate Bill 273 decreases the amount of regulations—LPAs do not have to register their supervisors, and supervisors do not have to list their supervisees. Hours of supervision do not need to be regulated.  Incidences of LLPs being cited for advertising infractions will be pretty much eliminated.  The “exceptions” to the licensing regulations will be less.  Senate Bill 273 streamlines the whole process.

Conclusion

MAPP and MPA hope that this helps dispel some of the misinformation some of us have been hearing.  Please feel free to spread this information to others.  If you hear any other misinformation, please do not hesitate to contact MAPP. 

And thank you once again for supporting Senate Bill 273, currently in the House Regulatory Reform Committee. 

   

 

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