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S.F. No. 37 - Licensure of Genetic Counselors (Third Engrossment)
Author: Senator Melissa H. Wiklund
Prepared By: Katie Cavanor, Senate Counsel (651/296-3801)
Date: April 7, 2016


SF 37 establishes licensure for genetic counselors.

Section 1 (147F.01) defines the following terms:  ABGC, ABMG, ACGC, board, eligible status, genetic counseling, genetic counselor, licensed physician, NSGC, qualified supervisor, supervisee, and supervision.

Section 2 (147F.03) describes the scope of practice for the practice of genetic counseling by a licensed genetic counselor.

Section 3 (147F.05) prohibits unlicensed practice and establishes title protection.

Subd. 1 prohibits an individual from using the title of genetic counselor, licensed genetic counselor, gene counselor, genetic consultant, genetic assistant, genetic associate or any words, letters, abbreviations, or insignia that indicates or implies that the individual is eligible for licensure as a genetic counselor unless the individual has been licensed under the chapter.

Subd. 2 prohibits an individual from practicing genetic counseling unless the individual is licensed as a genetic counselor under this chapter.

Subd. 3, paragraph (a) specifies that nothing in this chapter prohibits an individual who is duly licensed in this state to practice any profession or occupation or to perform any act that falls within the scope of practice of that occupation or profession.

Paragraph (b) specifies that a license is not required for individuals who are employed by the federal government or federal agency; students or interns currently enrolled in an accredited genetic counseling program or who have graduated within the past six months; a visiting certified genetic counselor working as a consultant, or are licensed to practice medicine under chapter 147.

Subd. 4 states that any individual who violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and is subject to sanctions under section 214.11.

Section 4 (147F.07) requirements for licensure.

Subd. 1 establishes the general requirements for licensure.

Subd. 2 establishes the requirements for licensure by reciprocity.

Subd. 3 authorizes the board to grant a license to an individual who does not meet the certification requirements in subdivision 1 but who has been employed as a genetic counselor for a minimum of ten years and provides to the board no later than February 1, 2017, the following documentation:  proof of a master’s degree of higher degree in genetics or related field from an accredited institution; proof that the individual has never failed a certification exam; three letters of recommendation; and documentation of the completion of 100 hours of approved continuing education within the past five years.  This subdivision expires February 1, 2017.

Subd. 4 states that a license is valid for one year from the date of issuance.

Subd. 5 establishes the requirements for license renewal.

Section 5 (147F.09) requires the board to take action on each application submitted and to provide written notice to the applicant of the action taken, the grounds for denying the license if the license was denied, and the applicant’s right to review  the board’s decision to deny the license.  Permits the board to investigate information provided by the applicant.  Permits an applicant whose license application was denied to make a written request to the board within 30 days of the notice, appear before the advisory council, and for the advisory council to review the board’s decision and make a recommendation to the board as to whether the denial should be affirmed.  Permits one request for review per licensure period.

Section 6 (147F.11) requires a licensed genetic counselor to complete a minimum of 25 hours of approved continuing educations units during a two-year period.  Permits the board to grant a variance to these continuing education requirements if the licensee can demonstrate to the satisfaction of the board that the licensee was unable to complete the required number of units during the period.  The board may extend the time period for completing the required number of units but may not allow the licensee to complete less than the required number.

Section 7 (147F.13) specifies that licensed genetic counselors and applicants are subject to the disciplinary actions and reporting requirements of sections 147.091 to 147.162.  (Board of Medical Practice)

Section 8 (147F.15) establishes the Licensed Genetic Counselor Advisory Council.

Section 9 (147F.17) establishes fees for the license application, initial licensure and annual renewal, and late fee.  Permits the board to prorate the initial license fee.  Specifies that the fees are nonrefundable and that all fees collected are to be deposited to the state government special revenue fund.

Section 10 (Appropriation) appropriates money from the special revenue fund to the Board of Medical Practice to administer the licensure program.

Section 11 (Effective Date) sets an effective date of July 1, 2017, for all sections.






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