Feb. 18, 2016 – TBCE Board Meeting Report
Written by Editor   
Friday, February 19, 2016 10:05 AM

The Texas Board of Chiropractic Examiners was called to order at about 1:00 PM on Thursday, Feb. 18, 2016.  

The roll was called and one absent board member was excused. The board voted to approve the minutes of the October 14, 2015 TBCE board meeting and then opened the meeting up for public comment to the board. 

The board then heard the report of the TBCE President from Dr. Cynthia Tays, and the executive Director’s report from Patricia Gilbert.  Ms Gilbert reports that her goals for the agency include working on projects focusing on four areas: customer service, education and outreach, compliance and in preparation for the TBCE Sunset Review.  She reports that general counsel Bryan Snoddy has focused on rule revision and implementation for the past two years and that she believes that the agency is in good shape to go into Sunset.

Generally the agency is working to improve telephone service, secure agency servers, and various staffing issues.  To improve customer service they are working to secure payment of licensing fees online through Texas.gov, returning calls within one business day, and shortening and simplifying telephone messages.  

For compliance, investigators will assist on compliance with board orders, and for education and outreach they are working on a Jurisprudence eCourse, website improvements, and a newsletter that more directly corresponds with board meetings.  Attached to this article are several forms that the TBCE uses in the Complaint and Investigation Processes.  These are provided so that all may become familiar with the process without having to experience it firsthand.

The board discussed future board appointments and made committee assignments.  Though three members are scheduled to rotate off of the TBCE no new appointees have yet been made.

The public was excused to the sit and stand in the hallway while the board retired into executive session to discuss the two lawsuits brought by the TMA and one lawsuit brought by the Texas Association of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine.  They also discussed a lawsuit brought against the Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists and its potential impact upon certain provisions of the Texas Chiropractic Act.  Following their executive session the board took a ten-minute break.  Upon resuming they considered any actions to be taken in relation to their discussions.  There were none.

The Licensure and Educational Standards Committee reported and took action upon three requests pertaining to licensure and sitting for examination.

The Rules Committee discussed amendments to rules

  • An amendment to Rule 73.4 Rules of conduct for facility owners was adopted, adding item (d):

(d) A facility shall maintain a current electronic mail address with the board. A facility shall notify the board, by electronic mail, of any change in the electronic mailing address within five (5) business days of the change. The notification must include the facility registration number.
  • An amendment to Rule 75.1 Notification and change of address was adopted striking out a portion of item (a) and adding time (c):

(a) Licensees shall maintain a current physical home and business address with the Board. In addition, a different mailing address may be provided beyond that of the home and business address. Within 30 days of a change in any of these addresses, a licensee shall notify the Board of the change in writing via U.S. mail, electronic-mail, facsimile, or other written communication. The notification of address change shall clearly and legibly identify the licensee, the address to be changed, the license number(s) associated with the address, and shall be signed by the licensee(s).  A change of address submitted through any of the online registration portals, including Texas.gov, is not valid and must be submitted in writing as indicated within this rule.

(b) The notification shall be signed by the licensee and must include the license number.
(c) A licensee shall maintain a current electronic mail address with the board. A licensee shall notify the board, by electronic mail, of any change in the electronic mailing address within five (5) business days of the change. The notification must include the license number.
  • An additional rule 77.10 Rules to prevent Fraud was tabled

§77.10.Rules to Prevent Fraud.

(a) Fraud Definition. Fraud is defined as an intentional misrepresentation where the following conditions are present: 
(1) there must be a cause of deception; 
(2) the act or acts must show an intentional misrepresentation of fact; and 

(3) the provider must stand to gain financially from the deception and misrepresentation. 

(b) Fraud Prevention. 

(1) A registered chiropractic facilities must annually certify that it maintains policies and/or procedures that govern how it handles matters concerning at least the following topics on: Medicare, billing, records management, and continuity of operations/wind-down of facility operations. 

(2) Chiropractic facilities are required to ensure that its employees have read, reviewed and been trained on each procedure or policy as applicable to the employee's job responsibilities within sixty (60) days of employment and every two (2) years thereafter while in the employ of the facility. 

(3) Chiropractors that have been found in violation of any law or Board rule related to fraud may be required to take the jurisprudence examination at their own expense. 

(4) The Enforcement Committee may require a chiropractic facility where a violation of any law or Board rule occurred involving fraud to submit to utilization and compliance reviews at the facility owner's expense. Additionally, the Enforcement Committee may require utilization and compliance reviews for chiropractic facilities that fail to maintain adequate policies and procedures. 

(c) Incorporation by Reference. As part of its policy for the prevention of fraud, the Board incorporates by reference into this section the following rules under this title: §72.2, relating to Application for License; §75.5, relating to Continuing Education; §78.1, relating to Unprofessional Conduct; §78.2, relating to Proper Diligence and Efficient Practice of Chiropractic; §77.2, relating to Publicity; and §77.8, relating to Records and Documentation.
  • Changes to Rule 78.6 Required fees and charges were adopted and Chapter 73 of the rules were reviewed and adopted without change.

The Enforcement Committee then discussed and took action on some 18 cases of agreed orders, three requests to expunge records, nearly a dozen cease and desist orders, and the revocation of a chiropractic license for felony conviction.

Future meeting dates of the TBCE will be TUESDAY, May 17, THURSDAY August 18 and November 17.