The Virginia General Assembly is still in session as this report is being written. The Legislative Committees of the VSCSW and the GWSCSW meet via zoom weekly during the legislative session, with our shared lobbyist, Mrs. Sue Rowland. The purpose of these meetings is to monitor bills relevant to Clinical Social Work and, if needed, to discuss securing patrons for bills of our own interest. As we approach the mid-point of the session, Sue believes we are in “good shape.”
Bills of interest have to do with the “Counseling Compact; Licensure of professional counselors” (HB 1433/SB802). This allows LPC's to practice in Compact member states. Social Work has NOT yet proposed similar legislation this session. Hopefully, we will be ready with a bill in 2024. If this bill passes, that will serve as a good precedent for LCSW's.
There are a number of bills having to do with Health Insurance companies' ethics and fairness in dealing with providers (SB927; SB1154; HB1503; HB1505). There is HB2146, which directs the Virginia Board of Social Work to adopt reciprocity standards for LCSW candidates who meet criteria and are licensed in another state and to adopt procedures for LCSW licensure by endorsement. Finally, we support a bill proposed by VSCSW Legislative Chair, Joe Lynch, which would require the Virginia Board of Social Work to “maintain a list of names and contact information of persons approved by the the Board to supervise candidates for licensure” (HB2231). If you need additional information, please contact a member of the legislative committee.
Our current lobbyist, Sue Rowland, who had graciously agreed to extend her contract one additional year, will finally retire as of May 31, 2023. The committee is currently seeking a replacement for our lobbyist who will serve our two Societies jointly as Sue has for a number of years. Sue is working with us in this process.
Members of both Societies may have already received an email request to complete a survey on “Barriers to Insurance Claims Paid,” which we urge you to complete and return as soon as possible. This survey, based on concerns raised by members of both Societies, was composed by Joe Lynch and asks specific questions on third party responses to claims submitted from LCSWs. It is extremely IMPORTANT to respond to this survey because the data collected could be the basis of future legislation.
If there is a GWS member who resides in Virginia, is licensed by the Board of Social Work and would like to be a part of our important committee, please contact me (Wayne Martin, firstname.lastname@example.org) or Legislative Branch Director, Judy Gallant (email@example.com).
PO Box 711 | Garrisonville, VA 22463 | 202-478-7638 | firstname.lastname@example.org