The Rules and Regulations herein contained constitute, comprise, and shall be known as the Rules and Regulations of the Genetic Counselor Advisory Council of the Board of Medical Licensure and Discipline, and are hereby promulgated, pursuant to 24 Del.C. §1799I(c).
Whenever used in these Rules and Regulations unless expressly otherwise stated, or unless the context or subject matter requires a different meaning, the following terms shall have the respective meanings hereinafter set forth or indicated.
"Board" means Delaware Board of Medical Licensure and Discipline.
"Council" means the Genetic Counselor Advisory Council of the Board of Medical Licensure and Discipline.
"Crime Substantially Related to the Practice of Genetic Counseling" means those crimes identified in Section 15.0 of the Rules and Regulations of the Board of Medical Licensure and Discipline.
The purpose of the rules and regulations is to establish minimal acceptable levels of safe practice to protect the general public and to serve as a guide for the Council and Board to evaluate the safe and effective practice of genetic counseling.
4.1 Each license shall be renewed biennially. The failure of the Council and/or Board to notify a licensee of his/her expiration date and subsequent renewals does not, in any way, relieve the licensee of the requirement to renew his/her certificate pursuant to the regulations of the Council and 24 Del.C. Ch. 17, Subchapter 11.
4.3 As a condition of renewal, each licensee shall maintain his/her certification with the American Board of Genetic Counseling, the American Board of Medical Genetics, or an organization that is recognized as equivalent.
4.5 Failure of a licensee to renew his/her license shall cause his/her license to expire. A licensee whose license has expired may renew his/her license within one (1) year after the expiration date upon fulfilling subsections 4.2 - 4.4 above, certifying that he/she has not practiced genetic counseling in Delaware while his/her license has expired, and paying the renewal fee and a late fee as determined by the Division of Professional Regulation.
4.7 The former licensee may re-apply under the same conditions that govern applicants for new licensure under 24 Del.C. Ch. 17, Subchapter 11.
5.1.1 Licensees are required to complete three (3) Continuing Education Units (CEU) biennially. A continuing education unit is equivalent to ten contact hours (a contact hour is 60 minutes). Licensees shall retain all certificates and other documented evidence of participation in an approved/accredited continuing education program for a period of at least (5) five years.
5.1.5 CEU hours shall be prorated for new licensees. A licensee for renewal shall follow the following schedule of reporting CEUs: if, at the time of renewal, you have been licensed for less than one year, NO continuing education is required; licensed for more than one year, but less than two years, half of the continuing education (1.5 CEUs) is required, all of which shall be Category 1 CEUs pursuant to subsection 5.3.2; licensed for two or more years, the full amount (3 CEUs) is required.
5.2.1 A licensee who because of a physical or mental illness during the license period could not complete the continuing education requirement may apply through the Council to the Board of Medical Licensure and Discipline for a waiver. A waiver would provide for an extension of time or exemption from some or all of the continuing education requirements for one (1) renewal period. Should the illness extend beyond one (1) renewal period, a new request must be submitted.
5.3.1 The overriding consideration in determining whether a specific activity/program qualifies as acceptable continuing education shall be that it is a planned program of learning which contributes directly to professional competence in the practice of Genetic Counseling
5.3.2 Licensees shall demonstrate that they have obtained CEUs in the categories and according to the criteria established by the American Board of Genetic Counselors (ABGC) for recertification, as may be amended from time to time.
6.1.1 The Division of Professional Regulation shall randomly select from the list of renewed licensees a percentage of licensees, determined by the Council to be audited. The Council may also audit based on complaints or charges against an individual license, relative to compliance with continuing education requirements or based on a finding of past non-compliance during prior audits.
6.2.1 When a licensee is selected for audit, the licensee shall be required to submit documentation showing detailed accounting of the various CEUs claimed by the licensee. Licensees selected for random audit are required to supplement the attestation with supporting materials which may include a syllabus, agenda, itinerary or brochure published by the sponsor of the activity and a document showing proof of attendance (i.e., certificate, a signed letter from the sponsor attesting to attendance, report of passing test score).The Council shall attempt to verify the CEUs shown on the documentation provided by the licensee. Upon completion of the review, the Council will decide whether the licensee's CEUs meet the requirements of these regulations.
6.2.4 Any continuing education that is rejected must be replaced by acceptable continuing education within a reasonable period of time established by the Council. This continuing education will not be counted towards the next renewal period.
6.3.1 The Council shall review all documentation requested of any licensee shown on the audit list. If the Council determines the licensee has met the requirements, the licensee's license shall remain in effect. If the Council determines the licensee has not met the requirements, the licensee shall be notified and a hearing may be held pursuant to the Administrative Procedures Act. This hearing will be conducted to determine if there are any extenuating circumstances justifying the apparent noncompliance with these regulations. Unjustified noncompliance with these regulations shall be considered unprofessional conduct and grounds for discipline pursuant to 24 Del.C. §1799P(a)(5), subject to final approval of the Council's written recommendation by the Board.
Pursuant to 24 Del.C. §1799P(a)(6) the crimes determined by the Board to be substantially related to the practice of medicine are also determined to be substantially related to the practice of genetic counseling and may result in the denial of a license and/or disciplinary action against a licensee.