TBCE Proposed Rules, September 2017
Written by Editor   
Monday, October 09, 2017 10:33 AM

The Texas Board of Chiropractic Examiners (Board) proposes amending several of its rules to comply with the changes wrought by this year's Legislative session. The proposed amendments would 1) permit a unlimited number of attempts to pass the jurisprudence exam in order to achieve a passing score, 2) repeal chiropractic facility registration, and 3) provide for license renewal every two years.

The amendment to Chapter 72, §72.9, concerning “examinations” is necessary to comply with the 2017 Sunset Commission recommendation to allow applicants an unlimited number of times to take the jurisprudence exam in order to achieve a passing score.

Previously, applicants were allowed no more than three attempts in one calendar year to pass the exam. Applicants were also required to submit a new application and pay the requisite fee to the Board to take the exam a third time. This amendment lifts the restriction on the number of examinations in a calendar year and eliminates the additional fee requirement.

The proposed amended rule would read (additions are in red, deletions in [strikethrough]):

§72.9. Reexaminations.

(a) An examinee who fails to pass the examination shall be permitted to take a subsequent examination, provided the examinee applies for reexamination and pays a reexamination fee as provided in §78.6 of this title (relating to Fees). An examinee shall be required to make a grade of 75% or better on any subsequent examination.
(b) An applicant is not limited in the number of times he or she may take the jurisprudence examination [no more than twice] in one calendar year in order [.If an applicant fails] to achieve a passing score [after the second attempt, the applicant must reapply by submitting a new application and required materials and fees, as provided in §72.2 of this title (relating to Application for License)].

 


The Board  also proposes the repeal of Chapter 73, §§73.1 - 73.5. The repeal is necessary in order to implement the 2017 Sunset legislation, SB304, which ceases the Board’s statutory authority over registering chiropractic facilities, as of September 1, 2017.

This repeal was proposed after a recommendation by the Rule Committee to the Board and approved by the Board for publication. Comments were received at a stakeholder meeting held on June 28, 2017, to discuss the statutory change and its effects, including how the Board could assist stakeholders in educating the effects of the statutory change.

The repeal would eliminate the following rules:  §73.1.Definitions; 73.2. Facility Registration Requirements; 73.3. Annual Renewal of Facility Registrations; 73.4. Rules of Conduct for Facility Owners; and 73.5. Disciplinary Action for Facility Owners.


 The Board further proposes amending Chapter 75, §75.2, concerning “Renewal of Chiropractic License.” The proposed amended rule is necessary to comply with the 2017 Sunset Commission recommendation to change the current annual license renewal period to a two-year cycle, which reflects the licensing procedure of other similar health professional licensing agencies.

The proposed amendment reads:

§75.2. Renewal of Chiropractic License. 

(a) Biennial [Annual] renewal. 

(1) Biennial [Annual] renewal of a licensee’s license shall be accomplished on or before the first day of the licensee’s birth month (first day of the birth month) every two years by submitting:

(A) the license renewal form provided by the board;
(B) the renewal fee for an active license as provided in §78.6 of this title (relating to Required Fees and Charges);
(C) any late fees, if applicable, as provided in subsection (h) of this section; and

(D) verification of continuing education attendanceas required by §75.5 of this title (relating to Continuing Education).

(2) Except as provided in §75.6 of this title (relating to Failure to Meet Continuing Education Requirements), incomplete submission of any of the information required for renewal shall not constitute a completed [annual] renewal and a [an annual] renewal certificate shall not be issued.

(3) Prior to the due date for [an annual] renewal, a licensee may instead apply for inactive status in accordance with §75.4 of this title (relating to Inactive Chiropractic License Status).

(4) A military service member who holds a license is entitled to two (2) years of additional time to complete:

(A) any continuing education requirements; and

(B) any other requirement related to the renewal of the military service member’s license.

(b) Locum tenens information.

(1) A licensee who substitutes as the treating doctor for another licensee in the facility of the absent licensee shall, along with the information required for annual renewal, provide a list of facilities in which they served as a locum tenens doctor during the past twelve month period.

(2) A licensee serving as a locum tenens doctor shall have proof of licensure readily available when requested. Proof of licensure may include:

(A) a copy of the current license renewal certificate; or

(B) a copy of the wallet size license.

(3) The locum tenens list shall include the following for each facility:

(A) licensee's name; and
(B) facility physical address[; and]

[(C) facility registration number displayed on the current facility registration card.] 

[(4) If a facility registration number is not provided, a locum tenens doctor shall report the facility registration number as "not available." Licensees for whom facility numbers are reported as "not available" may be subject to investigation for the operation of an unregistered facility.]

(c) Licensees in default of TGSLC student loan or repayment agreement.

(1) The board shall not renew a license of a licensee who is in default of a loan guaranteed by the Texas Guaranteed Student Loan Corporation (TGSLC) or a repayment agreement with the corporation except as provided in paragraphs (2) and (3) of this subsection.

(2) For a licensee in default of a loan, the board shall renew the license if:

(A) the renewal is the first renewal following notice to the board that the licensee is in default; or

(B) the licensee presents to the board a certificate issued by the corporation certifying that:

(i) the licensee has entered into a repayment agreement on the defaulted loan; or

(ii) the licensee is not in default on a loan guaranteed by the corporation.

(3) For a licensee who is in default of a repayment agreement, the board shall renew the license if the licensee presents to the board a certificate issued by the corporation certifying that: 

(A) the [The] licensee has entered into another repayment agreement on the defaulted loan; or

(B) the licensee is not in default on a loan guaranteedby the corporation or on a repayment agreement.

 (4) This subsection does not prohibit the board from issuing an initial license to a person who is in default of a loan or repayment agreement but is otherwise qualified for licensure. However, the board shall not renew the license of such a licensee, if at the time of renewal, the licensee is in default of a loan or repayment agreement except as provided in paragraph (2)(B) or (3) of this subsection.

(d) Licensees in default of other student loans or scholarship obligations.

(1) This subsection applies to a licensee in default of a student loan other than a loan guaranteed by the TGSLC, in breach of a loan repayment agreement other than one related to a TGSLC loan, or in breach of any scholarship contract.

(2) The board may refuse to renew a chiropractic license if it receives information from an administering entity that the licensee has defaulted on a student loan or has breached a student loan repayment contract, or a scholarship contract by failing to perform his or her service obligation under the contract. The board may rescind a denial of renewal under this subsection upon receipt of information from an administering entity that the licensee whose renewal was denied is now in good standing, as provided in §72.3(b) of this title (relating to Qualifications of Applicants).

(e) Upon notice that a licensee is again in default or breach of any loan or agreement relating to a student loan or scholarship agreement under subsections (c) or (d) of this section, the board may suspend the license or take other disciplinary action as provided in §77.6 of this title (relating to Default on Student Loans and Scholarship Agreements).

(f) Opportunity for hearing.

(1) The board shall notify a licensee, in writing, of the nonrenewal of a license under subsection (c) or (d) of this section and of the opportunity for a hearing under paragraph (2) of this subsection prior to or at the time the annual renewal application is sent.

(2) Upon written request for a hearing by a licensee, the board shall set the matter for hearing before the State Office of Administrative Hearings in accordance with §78.8(d) of this title (relating to Complaint Procedures). A licensee shall file a request for a hearing with the board within 30 days from the date of receipt of the notice provided in paragraph (1) of this subsection.

(g) A license which is not renewed under subsection (c) or (d) of this section is considered expired. Subsections (h) and (i) of this section apply to a license not renewed under subsection (c) or (d) of this section.

(h) Expired license.

(1) If an active or inactive license is not renewed on or before the first day of the licensee’s birth month of the renewal deadline [each year], it expires.

(2) If a person’s license has expired for 90 days or less, the person may renew the license by paying to the board the required renewal fee and a late fee, as provided in §78.6 of this title (relating to Required Fees and Charges).

(3) If a person’s license has expired for longer than 90 days, but less than one year, the person may renew the license by paying to the board the required renewal fee and a late fee, as provided in §78.6 of this title.

(4) Except as provided by paragraphs (5) and (6) ofthis subsection, if a person’s license has expired for one year or longer, the person may not renew the license but may obtain a new license by submitting to reexamination and complying with the current requirements and procedures for obtaining an initial license.

(5) At the board’s discretion, a person whose license has expired for one year or longer may renew without complying with paragraph (4) of this subsection if the person moved to another state or foreign country and is currently licensed in good standing and has been in practice in the other state or foreign country for two years preceding application for renewal. The person must also pay the board a fee equal to the examination fee, as provided in §78.6 of this title. A person is considered “currently licensed” if such person is licensed by another licensing board recognized by the Board. The Board shall recognize another licensing board that: 

(A) has licensing requirements substantially equivalent to the requirements of the Chiropractic Act; and

(B) maintains professional standards considered by the Board to be equivalent to the standards under the Chiropractic Act.

(6) At the board’s discretion, a person whose license has expired for one year but not more than three years may renew without complying with paragraph (4) of this subsection, if the board determines that the person has shown good cause for the failure to renew the license and pays to the board:

(A) the required renewal fee for each [year] renewal period in which the licensee was expired; and

(B) an additional fee in an amount equal to the sum of:

(i) the jurisprudence examination fee, multiplied by the number of years the license was expired, prorated for fractional years; and

(ii) two times the jurisprudence examination fee.

(7) Good cause for the purposes of paragraph (6) of this subsection means extenuating circumstances beyond the control of the applicant which prevented the person from complying timely with subsection (a) of this section, such as extended personal illness or injury, extended illness of the immediate family, or military duty outside the United States where communication for an extended period is impossible. Good cause is not shown if the applicant was practicing chiropractic during the period of time that the applicant’s license was expired. With the renewal application, an applicant must submit a notarized sworn affidavit and supporting documents that demonstrate good cause, in the opinion of the board.

(8) The Board shall exempt a person who holds a license issued by the Board from any increased fee or penalty imposed by the Board for failing to renew the license in a timely manner if the person establishes to the satisfaction of the Board that the failure to renew the license in a timely manner is because the person was serving as a military service member. For purposes of this section, “military service member" means a person who is on active duty.

(i) Practicing with an expired license. Practicing chiropractic with an expired license constitutes practicing chiropractic without a license. A licensee whose license expires shall not practice chiropractic until the license is renewed or a new license is obtained as provided by subsection (h) of this section, except for a license which is not renewed under subsection (c) or (d) of this section if the licensee has timely requested a hearing under subsection (f) of this section.

(j) Renewal of licenses. A licensee shall furnish a written explanation of his or her answer to any question asked on the application for license renewal, if requested by the board. This explanation shall include all details as the board may request and shall be furnished within two weeks of the date of the board’s request.


Finally, the Board proposes amending Chapter 75, §75.4, concerning “Inactive Chiropractic License Status.” The proposed amended rule is necessary to comply with the 2017 Sunset Commission recommendation to change the current annual license renewal period to a two-year period, which reflects the licensing procedures of other similar health professional licensing agencies.

The proposal reads:

§75.4. Inactive Chiropractic License Status.

(a) On [Each year, on] or before a licensee’s renewal date, a licensee who is not currently practicing chiropractic in Texas may renew his or her license as provided by §75.2 of this title (relating to Renewal of Chiropractic License) and request, on a form prescribed by the board, that it be placed on inactive status. In order to continue on inactive status and to maintain a valid license, an inactive licensee must renew his or her license and make a new request for inactive status each renewal period [year].

(b) If the application is late, the licensee shall be subject to §75.2 (h) of this title. A licensee on inactive status is not required to complete continuing education as provided in §75.5 of this title (relating to Continuing Education).

(c) To place a license on inactive status at a time other than the time of license renewal, a licensee shall:

(1) return the current renewal certificate to the board office; and

(2) submit a signed, sworn declaration made under penalty of perjury [notarized statement] stating that the licensee shall not practice chiropractic in Texas while the license is inactive, and the date the license is to be placed on inactive status.

(d) To reactivate a license which has been on inactive status for six [five] years or less, a licensee shall, prior to beginning practice in this state:

(1) apply for active status on a form prescribed by the board;
(2) submit written verification of attendance at and completion of continuing education courses as required by §75.5 of this title for the number of hours that would otherwise have been required for renewal of a license. Approved continuing education earned within the calendar year prior to the licensee applying for reactivation may be applied toward the continuing education requirement; and

(3) pay the Active License Renewal Fee.

(e) A license which has been on inactive status fora period of more than six [five] years may be reactivated only upon successfully passing Part IV of the National Board of Examination and the board’s Jurisprudence Examination prior to reactivation. A licensee who has maintained an inactive status with the Board for a period greater than six (6) [five(5)] years may be exempt from compliance with the requirement of this subsection to retake Part IV of the National Board of Examination if they have held an active, unrestricted license in another state or foreign jurisdiction that is held in good standing. In no event shall an inactive status be maintained before this Board in excess of twenty (20) years.

(f) Prohibition against Practicing Chiropractic inTexas. A licensee while on inactive status shall not practice chiropracticin this state. The practice of chiropractic by a licensee while oninactive status constitutes the practice of chiropractic without a license.


Comments on these proposed amended rules and/or a request for a public hearing may be submitted to Courtney L. Ebeier, General Counsel, Texas Board of Chiropractic Examiners, 333 Guadalupe St., Tower III, Suite 825, Austin, Texas 78701, via email: rules@tbce.state.tx.us; or fax: (512) 305-6705, no later than 30 days from the date that this proposed amended rule is published in the Texas Register.


Source:  http://www.sos.state.tx.us/texreg/archive/September292017/Proposed%20Rules/22.EXAMINING%20BOARDS.html#20