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COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA

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Pennsylvania Code



Subchapter C. STANDARDS OF
PRACTICE AND CONDUCT


Sec.


45.101.    Preparing, maintaining and retaining records.
45.102.    Code of Ethics.
45.103.    Unprofessional conduct.
45.104.    Fraud or deceit.

Authority

   The provisions of this Subchapter C issued under sections 5 and 10 of the Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists Licensure Act (63 P. S. § §  1705 and 1710), unless otherwise noted.

Source

   The provisions of this Subchapter C adopted July 20, 1990, effective July 21, 1990, 20 Pa.B. 3973, unless otherwise noted.

Cross References

   This subchapter cited in 49 Pa. Code §  45.304 (relating to minimum education, experience and training requirements).

§ 45.101. Preparing, maintaining and retaining records.

 (a)  A licensee shall maintain a record for each person served which accurately, legibly and completely reflects the evaluation or treatment of that person. A record shall be prepared and retained irrespective of whether treatment is actually rendered or whether a fee is charged. The record shall include, at a minimum:

   (1)  The name and address of the person served and, if that person is a minor, the name of the parent or guardian.

   (2)  The date of each visit by the person served.

   (3)  A description of the complaint, symptoms and diagnosis of the person served.

   (4)  A description of the treatment or service rendered at each visit and the identity of the licensee or assistant rendering it.

   (5)  The date of each entry into the record bearing on evaluation or treatment and the signature of the licensee.

 (b)  A licensee shall retain records for a person served for a minimum of 7 years from the date of the last entry. A licensee shall retain and store the records in a safe location to maintain confidentiality.

 (c)  A licensee shall comply with a written, dated and signed transfer of records request from a person served, or from that person’s parent or guardian if the person is a minor within a reasonable period of time upon receipt of the request. A legible copy of the record shall be provided either gratuitously or at a charge which reflects the licensee’s cost of duplicating and forwarding the record.

 (d)  A licensee’s failure to comply with this section will be considered unprofessional conduct under §  45.103 (relating to unprofessional conduct) and will subject the noncomplying licensee to disciplinary action under section 5(4) of the act (63 P. S. §  1705(4)).

 (e)  This section does not apply to licensees acting within the scope of their employment under section 6(b)(2) of the act (63 P. S. §  1706(b)(2)).

Cross References

   This section cited in 49 Pa. Code §  45.103 (relating to unprofessional conduct).

§ 45.102. Code of Ethics.

 (a)  General. The Board is empowered by section 5(2) of the act (63 P.S. §  1705(2)) to promulgate a Code of Ethics for speech-language pathologists and audiologists, and the Board finds that the following rules are essential for establishing and maintaining stringent standards of professional conduct and for protecting the public interest, the Board has established the following Code of Ethics. A violation of this code constitutes unprofessional conduct under §  45.103 (relating to unprofessional conduct) or, as applicable, fraud or deceit under §  45.104 (relating to fraud or deceit), and subjects the violator to appropriate disciplinary action.

 (b)  Preamble.

   (1)  The preservation of the highest standards of integrity is vital to the successful discharge of the professional responsibilities of speech-language pathologists and audiologists. To this end, the Board has established this Code of Ethics to safeguard the public health, safety and welfare and to assure that speech-language and hearing services of the highest possible quality are available to the people of this Commonwealth. A violation of a provision of the Code of Ethics constitutes unprofessional conduct subject to disciplinary action. Accordingly, failure to specify a particular responsibility or practice in the code should not be construed as a deliberate omission.

   (2)  The fundamental rules of ethical conduct are described in the following categories:

     (i)   Principles of Ethics. Seven principles serve as the basis for the ethical evaluation of professional conduct and form the underlying moral basis for the Code of Ethics. Speech-language pathologists and audiologists, as defined in the act, shall observe these principles as affirmative obligations under all conditions of professional activity.

     (ii)   Ethical proscriptions. Ethical proscriptions are formal statements of prohibitions that are derived from the Principles of Ethics.

 (c)  Principle of Ethics I.

   (1)  Because speech-language pathologists and audiologists provide nonmedical and nonsurgical services, medical diagnosis and medical treatment by these persons are specifically to be considered unethical and illegal.

     (i)   A licensee shall provide treatment pursuant only to an examination and diagnosis of the person served.

     (ii)   A licensee who performs examinations and treatments shall use evaluation instruments, techniques and procedures commonly recognized by their profession and compatible with their education, expertise and professional competence.

   (2)  Ethical proscriptions are as follows: A licensee may not provide treatment if the results of the diagnostic examination disclose a need for medical evaluation as commonly recognized by the profession.

 (d)  Principles of Ethics II.

   (1)  A licensee shall hold paramount the welfare of persons served professionally.

     (i)   A licensee shall use every resource available, including referral to other specialists as needed, to provide the best service possible.

     (ii)   A licensee shall fully inform a person served, a parent or guardian, of the nature and possible effects of the services.

     (iii)   A licensee shall fully inform subjects participating in research or teaching activities of the nature and possible effects of these activities.

     (iv)   A licensee shall provide appropriate access to the records of a person served professionally.

     (v)   A licensee shall take all reasonable precautions to avoid injuring a person in the delivery of professional services.

     (vi)   A licensee shall evaluate services and products rendered to determine their effectiveness.

   (2)  Ethical proscriptions are as follows:

     (i)   A licensee may not exploit a person in the delivery or payment for professional services, as provided for under the act. Exploitation of services includes accepting persons for treatment or by continuing treatment when benefits cannot reasonably be expected.

     (ii)   A licensee may not guarantee the results of a therapeutic procedure, directly or by implication. A reasonable statement of prognosis may be made, but caution shall be exercised not to mislead a person served professionally to expect results that cannot be predicted from sound evidence.

     (iii)   A licensee may not use a person for teaching or research in a manner that constitutes invasion of privacy or fails to afford informed free choice to participate.

     (iv)   A licensee may not evaluate or treat speech, language or hearing disorders except in a professional relationship. The licensee may not evaluate or treat solely by correspondence. This proscription does not preclude follow-up correspondence with a person previously seen or providing the person with general information of an educational nature.

     (v)   A licensee may not discriminate in the delivery of professional services on the basis of race, sex, age, religion or another basis that is unjustifiable or irrelevant to the need for and potential benefit from the services.

 (e)  Principle of Ethics III.

   (1)  A licensee shall maintain high standards of professional competence.

     (i)   A licensee engaging in clinical practice or supervision shall hold the appropriate license for the area in which the licensee is providing professional services or supervising the provision of the services.

     (ii)   A licensee shall continue professional development throughout his career.

     (iii)   A licensee shall identify competent, dependable referral sources for a person served.

     (iv)   A licensee shall maintain adequate records of professional services rendered.

     (v)   A licensee shall exercise his own independent professional judgment in evaluating and effectuating prescriptions for services.

   (2)  Ethical proscriptions are as follows:

     (i)   A licensee may not provide services or supervision which the licensee is not qualified to perform under the act, nor may the licensee permit services to be provided by a staff person who is not qualified pursuant to the requirements of the act.

     (ii)   A licensee may not delegate to an unlicensed person any service requiring the professional competence of a licensed individual.

     (iii)   A licensee may not offer clinical services by assistants, students or trainees for whom he does not provide appropriate supervision and assume full responsibility.

     (iv)   A licensee may not require or suggest that anyone under his supervision engage in a practice that is a violation of this Code of Ethics.

 (f)  Principle of Ethics IV.

   (1)  A licensee’s statement to a person served professionally and to the public shall provide accurate information about the nature and management of communicative disorders, about the profession and about services rendered by its practitioners.

   (2)  Ethical proscriptions are as follows:

     (i)   A licensee may not misrepresent training or competence.

     (ii)   A licensee’s public statements providing information about professional services and products may not contain representations or claims that are false, deceptive or misleading.

     (iii)   A licensee may not use professional or commercial affiliations in a way that would mislead persons served or limit the services available to them.

 (g)  Principle of Ethics V.

   (1)  A licensee shall maintain objectivity in all matters concerning the welfare of a person served. Accordingly, a licensee who dispenses products to a person served shall observe the following standards:

     (i)   Products associated with professional practice shall be dispensed to a person served as part of a program of comprehensive habilitative care.

     (ii)   Fees established for professional services shall be independent of whether a product is dispensed.

     (iii)   A person served shall be allowed freedom of choice as to the source of services and products, in accordance with the act of May 26, 1988 (P. L. 403, No. 66) (35 P. S. § §  449.21—449.23).

     (iv)   Price information about professional services rendered and products dispensed shall be disclosed by providing to or posting for a person served a complete schedule of fees and charges in advance of rendering services. This schedule shall differentiate between fees for professional services and charges for products dispensed.

     (v)   A licensee shall evaluate products dispensed to a person served to determine their effectiveness.

   (2)  An ethical proscription is as follows: a licensee may not participate in activities that constitute conflicts of professional interest.

 (h)  Principle of Ethics VI.

   (1)  A licensee shall uphold the dignity of the profession and freely accept its self-imposed standards.

   (2)  A licensee shall inform the Board when he has reason to believe that a licensee under the act may have violated this Code of Ethics.

   (3)  Ethical proscriptions are as follows:

     (i)   A licensee may not engage in violations of this Code of Ethics or attempt in any way to circumvent it.

     (ii)   A licensee may not engage in dishonesty, fraud, deceit, misrepresentation or another form of illegal conduct.

Authority

   The provisions of this §  45.102 amended under sections 5(2) and (7), 7(d)(1), 8(a) and 8.1 of the Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists Licensure Act (63 P.S. § §  1705(2) and (7), 1707(d)(1), 1708(a) and 1708.1); and section 810(a)(3) and (7) of The Administrative Code of 1929 (71 P.S. §  279.1(a)(3) and (7)).

Source

   The provisions of this §  45.102 amended July 14, 2017, effective July 15, 2017, 47 Pa.B. 3814. Immediately preceding text appears at serial pages (375017) to (375021).

§ 45.103. Unprofessional conduct.

 As used in section 10(5) of the act (63 P.S. §  1710(5)), the term ‘‘unprofessional conduct’’ includes all of the following types of conduct:

   (1)  Practicing as a speech-language pathologist or an audiologist with a license that has lapsed or that has been suspended or revoked.

   (2)  Knowingly aiding or abetting a person who is not licensed or exempted from licensure by the act to practice as a speech-language pathologist or an audiologist.

   (3)  Misrepresenting or concealing a material fact in seeking reinstatement of a license to practice as a speech-language pathologist or an audiologist.

   (4)  Delegating to a person duties that the speech-language pathologist or an audiologist knows, or has reason to know, the person is not competent or authorized to perform.

   (5)  Committing an act of gross negligence, gross malpractice or gross incompetence, or repeated acts of negligence, malpractice or incompetence.

   (6)  Practicing as a speech-language pathologist or an audiologist while unable to do so with reasonable skill and safety because of illness, drunkenness, excessive use of controlled substances, chemicals or other types of materials or as the result of a mental or physical condition.

   (7)  Withdrawing professional services after a professional relationship has been established without informing the person served of where to obtain necessary and equivalent professional services in a timely manner.

   (8)  Harassing, abusing or intimidating a person served. Sexual contact, or requests for sexual contact, with a person served is specifically prohibited by this subsection.

   (9)  Committing an act involving moral turpitude, dishonesty or corruption when the act directly or indirectly affects the health, welfare or safety of citizens of this Commonwealth. If the act constitutes a crime, conviction in a criminal proceeding is not a condition precedent to disciplinary action by the Board.

   (10)  Failing to provide necessary professional care or products to a person served in a timely manner or to inform the person served of the need for the care.

   (11)  Revealing personal or professional identifiable facts obtained as a result of a professional relationship without the prior consent of the person served, parent or guardian, except as authorized by a court or required by statute.

   (12)  Unconditionally guaranteeing the effectiveness of professional services and products rendered.

   (13)  Advertising professional services and products in a manner which is false, misleading or deceptive.

   (14)  Accepting compensation from a person being supervised or sponsored, beyond reasonable reimbursement for direct expenses.

   (15)  Being disciplined by a licensing or disciplinary authority of another state or country or convicted or disciplined by a court of a state or country for an act that would be grounds for disciplinary action under the act or this chapter.

   (16)  Being convicted of or pleading guilty or nolo contendere to a felony, whether or not an appeal or other proceeding is pending to have the conviction or plea set aside.

   (17)  Failing to comply with §  45.101 (relating to preparing, maintaining and retaining records).

   (18)  Providing services or promoting the sale of devices, appliances or products to a person who cannot reasonably be expected to benefit from them.

   (19)  Failing to comply with the act.

   (20)  Failing to comply with an order, rule or regulation issued or adopted by the Board, including its Code of Ethics.

   (21)  Violating a State or Federal statute or a regulation promulgated thereunder in the Pennsylvania Code or the Code of Federal Regulations by a State or Federal agency that imposes a standard for practicing as a speech-language pathologist or an audiologist in this Commonwealth. The Board, in reaching a decision as to whether there has been a violation of a statute or regulation, will be guided by adjudications of the agency or court that administers or enforces the standard.

   (22)  Utilizing neurophysiologic intraoperative monitoring without possessing certification from the Board.

   (23)  Failing to refer patients who presented with suspected medical conditions beyond the licensee’s scope of practice under the act for medical evaluation to an appropriate physician within 30 days.

   (24)  Failing to follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s 2007 Guideline for Isolation Precautions: Preventing Transmission of Infectious Agents in Healthcare Settings.

Authority

   The provisions of this §  45.103 amended under sections 5(2) and (7), 7(d)(1), 8(a) and 8.1 of the Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists Licensure Act (63 P.S. § §  1705(2) and (7), 1707(d)(1), 1708(a) and 1708.1); and section 810(a)(3) and (7) of The Administrative Code of 1929 (71 P.S. §  279.1(a)(3) and (7)).

Source

   The provisions of this §  45.103 amended July 14, 2017, effective July 15, 2017, 47 Pa.B. 3814. Immediately preceding text appears at serial pages (375021) to (375022).

Cross References

   This section cited in 49 Pa. Code §  45.101 (relating to preparing, maintaining and retaining records); 49 Pa. Code §  45.102 (relating to Code of Ethics); and 49 Pa. Code §  45.406 (relating to confidentiality—waived).

§ 45.104. Fraud or deceit.

 As used in section 10(6) of the act (63 P. S. §  1710(6)), ‘‘fraud and deceit’’ includes, but is not limited to, the following types of conduct:

   (1)  Misrepresenting or concealing a material fact in obtaining payment for services.

   (2)  Falsifying the record of a person served regarding treatment rendered to that person.

   (3)  Falsely representing the use or availability of the services or advice of a physician.

   (4)  Misrepresenting credentials by using the word ‘‘doctor’’ or a similar word, abbreviation or symbol if the use is not accurate or if the degree was not conferred by an accredited institution.

   (5)  Misrepresenting the scope or nature of services which the licensee is competent to provide or which the person served can reasonably be expected to benefit from.

Cross References

   This section cited in 49 Pa. Code §  45.102 (relating to Code of Ethics).



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