STAND. COM. REP. NO. 427

 

Honolulu, Hawaii

, 2023

 

RE: H.B. No. 1300

H.D. 1

 

 

 

 

Honorable Scott K. Saiki

Speaker, House of Representatives

Thirty-Second State Legislature

Regular Session of 2023

State of Hawaii

 

Sir:

 

Your Committee on Health & Homelessness, to which was referred H.B. No. 1300 entitled:

 

"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO MENTAL HEALTH,"

 

begs leave to report as follows:

 

The purpose of this measure is to:

 

(1) Establish provisional or associate-level licensure requirements and insurance reimbursement allowances for marriage and family therapists, mental health counselors, and psychologists in training;

 

(2) Allow psychologist license applicants to sit for the licensing examination before completing the supervised experience required for licensure requirements;

 

(3) Allow the Board of Psychology to grant licensure waivers for psychologists in certain circumstances; and

 

(4) Authorize insurance reimbursements for services provided by a supervised social work intern in certain circumstances.

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Department of Public Safety; Hawaii Psychological Association; National Association of Social Workers, Hawaii Chapter; Hawaiian Islands Association for Marriage and Family Therapy; Xplor Counseling, LLC; and numerous individuals. Your Committee received comments on this measure from the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Board of Psychology, and Hawaii Medical Service Association.

 

Your Committee finds that there is a great demand for mental health practitioners in the State. Your Committee further finds that as part of the requirements for licensure as a marriage and family therapist, mental health counselor, or psychologist, applicants must provide clinical services under the direct supervision of a licensed therapist, counselor, or psychologist. However, the hours of mental health services provided by these applicants are not eligible for insurance reimbursement. This measure seeks to ensure access to mental health services by establishing associate-level licensure requirements that would allow certain mental health providers to receive health insurance reimbursements for services rendered as part of post-degree, pre-licensure supervised practice.

 

Your Committee has amended this measure by:

 

(1) Appropriating funds for the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs' Professional and Vocational Licensing Division to establish one full-time equivalent position and make necessary updates to internal databases;

 

(2) Inserting a severability clause;

 

(3) Delaying the implementation of the new provisional or associate-level licensure requirements until July 1, 2024;

 

(4) Changing the effective date to June 30, 3000, to encourage further discussion; and

 

(5) Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity, consistency, and style.

 

As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Health & Homelessness that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 1300, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as H.B. No. 1300, H.D. 1, and be referred to your Committee on Consumer Protection & Commerce.

 

 

Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Health & Homelessness,

 

 

 

 

____________________________

DELLA AU BELATTI, Chair