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2013 Minnesota Statutes

148.5192 SPEECH-LANGUAGE PATHOLOGY ASSISTANTS.

Subdivision 1.Delegation requirements.

A licensed speech-language pathologist may delegate duties to a speech-language pathology assistant in accordance with this section. Duties may only be delegated to an individual who has documented with a transcript from an educational institution satisfactory completion of either:

(1) an associate degree from a speech-language pathology assistant program that is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges or its equivalent as approved by the commissioner; or

(2) a bachelor's degree in the discipline of communication sciences or disorders with additional transcript credit in the area of instruction in assistant-level service delivery practices and completion of at least 100 hours of supervised field work experience as a speech-language pathology assistant student.

Subd. 2.Delegated duties; prohibitions.

(a) A speech-language pathology assistant may perform only those duties delegated by a licensed speech-language pathologist and must be limited to duties within the training and experience of the speech-language pathology assistant.

(b) Duties may include the following as delegated by the supervising speech-language pathologist:

(1) assist with speech language and hearing screenings;

(2) implement documented treatment plans or protocols developed by the supervising speech-language pathologist;

(3) document client performance;

(4) assist with assessments of clients;

(5) assist with preparing materials and scheduling activities as directed;

(6) perform checks and maintenance of equipment;

(7) support the supervising speech-language pathologist in research projects, in-service training, and public relations programs; and

(8) collect data for quality improvement.

(c) A speech-language pathology assistant may not:

(1) perform standardized or nonstandardized diagnostic tests, perform formal or informal evaluations, or interpret test results;

(2) screen or diagnose clients for feeding or swallowing disorders, including using a checklist or tabulating results of feeding or swallowing evaluations, or demonstrate swallowing strategies or precautions to clients or the clients' families;

(3) participate in parent conferences, case conferences, or any interdisciplinary team without the presence of the supervising speech-language pathologist or other licensed speech-language pathologist as authorized by the supervising speech-language pathologist;

(4) provide client or family counseling or consult with the client or the family regarding the client status or service;

(5) write, develop, or modify a client's individualized treatment plan or individualized education program;

(6) select clients for service;

(7) discharge clients from service;

(8) disclose clinical or confidential information either orally or in writing to anyone other than the supervising speech-language pathologist; or

(9) make referrals for additional services.

(d) A speech-language pathology assistant must not sign any formal documents, including treatment plans, education plans, reimbursement forms, or reports. The speech-language pathology assistant must sign or initial all treatment notes written by the assistant.

Subd. 3.Supervision requirements.

(a) A supervising speech-language pathologist shall authorize and accept full responsibility for the performance, practice, and activity of a speech-language pathology assistant.

(b) A supervising speech-language pathologist must:

(1) be licensed under sections 148.511 to 148.5198;

(2) hold a certificate of clinical competence from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association or its equivalent as approved by the commissioner; and

(3) have completed at least one continuing education unit in supervision.

(c) The supervision of a speech-language pathology assistant shall be maintained on the following schedule:

(1) for the first 90 workdays, within a 40-hour work week, 30 percent of the work performed by the speech-language pathology assistant must be supervised and at least 20 percent of the work performed must be under direct supervision; and

(2) for the work period after the initial 90-day period, within a 40-hour work week, 20 percent of the work performed must be supervised and at least ten percent of the work performed must be under direct supervision.

(d) For purposes of this section, "direct supervision" means on-site, in-view observation and guidance by the supervising speech-language pathologist during the performance of a delegated duty. The supervision requirements described in this section are minimum requirements. Additional supervision requirements may be imposed at the discretion of the supervising speech-language pathologist.

(e) A supervising speech-language pathologist must be available to communicate with a speech-language pathology assistant at any time the assistant is in direct contact with a client.

(f) A supervising speech-language pathologist must document activities performed by the assistant that are directly supervised by the supervising speech-language pathologist. At a minimum, the documentation must include:

(1) information regarding the quality of the speech-language pathology assistant's performance of the delegated duties; and

(2) verification that any delegated clinical activity was limited to duties authorized to be performed by the speech-language pathology assistant under this section.

(g) A supervising speech-language pathologist must review and cosign all informal treatment notes signed or initialed by the speech-language pathology assistant.

(h) A full-time, speech-language pathologist may supervise no more than one full-time, speech-language pathology assistant or the equivalent of one full-time assistant.

Subd. 4.Notification.

Any agency or clinic that intends to utilize the services of a speech-language pathology assistant must provide written notification to the client or, if the client is younger than 18 years old, to the client's parent or guardian before a speech-language pathology assistant may perform any of the duties described in this section.

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