55th legislature - STATE OF NEW MEXICO - first session, 2021


D. Wonda Johnson









     SECTION 1. Section 61-9A-3 NMSA 1978 (being Laws 1993, Chapter 49, Section 3, as amended) is amended to read:

     "61-9A-3. DEFINITIONS.--As used in the Counseling and Therapy Practice Act:

          A. "accredited institution" means a university or college accredited by an accrediting agency of institutions of higher education;

          B. "appraisal" means selecting, administering, scoring and interpreting instruments designed to assess a person's aptitudes, attitudes, abilities, achievements, interests, personal characteristics and current emotional or mental state by appropriately educated, trained and experienced clinicians and the use of nonstandardized methods and techniques for understanding human behavior in relation to coping with, adapting to or changing life situations of a physical, mental or emotional nature; "appraisal" shall not be construed to permit the performance of any act that a counselor or a therapist is not educated, trained and licensed to perform;

          C. "appropriate clinical supervision" means as defined by rule, supervision provided by a licensed:

                (1) professional clinical mental health counselor;

                (2) marriage and family therapist;

                (3) professional art therapist;

                (4) psychiatrist;

                (5) clinical psychologist;

                (6) clinical nurse specialist in psychiatry;

                (7) independent social worker with two years of mental health and supervised clinical experience; or

                 (8) alcohol and drug abuse counselor. A [licenced] licensed alcohol and drug abuse counselor [must] shall have completed three years of work experience in the field of alcohol and drug abuse [experience] prior to providing supervision;

          D. "appropriate clinical supervisor for substance abuse associate" means a person who has education and experience specific to the career track of the associate and has training in transmitting knowledge, skills and attitudes through a relational process that includes direct oversight of the clinical work;

          E. "approved clinical supervisor" means a person who is a licensed professional clinical mental health counselor, licensed marriage and family therapist, licensed professional art therapist, licensed psychiatrist, licensed clinical psychologist, clinical nurse specialist in psychiatry or licensed independent social worker and provides supervision to a licensed mental health counselor or therapist;

          F. "art therapy" means the rendering of art therapy principles whereby communication is facilitated through therapeutic counseling and art media. This involves the application of the principles of human development and psychological theories, which are implemented in the full spectrum of models of assessment and treatment, including psychodynamics and cognitive, interpersonal and other therapeutic means to individuals, couples, families, groups and communities for the promotion of optimal mental health;

          G. "board" means the counseling and therapy practice board;

          H. "client contact hours" means the face-to-face time spent with a client to appraise, assess, evaluate, diagnose, treat psychopathology and provide counseling services;

          I. "clinical counseling" means the rendering of counseling services involving the application of principles of psychotherapy, human development, learning theory, diagnosis, treatment and the etiology of mental illness and dysfunctional behavior to individuals, couples, families or groups for the purpose of assessing and treating psychopathology and promoting optimal mental health;

          J. "consultation" means the voluntary, nonsupervisory relationship between professionals or other pertinent persons, in application of scientific counseling, guidance and human development principles and procedures to provide assistance in understanding and resolving a current or potential problem that the consultee may have in relation to a third party, be it an individual, group, family or organization;

          K. "counselor training and education" means a process that prepares counselors and therapists in both didactic and clinical aspects of counseling;

          L. "course" means an integrated, organized course of study, which encompasses a minimum of one school semester or equivalent hours;

          M. "counseling" means the application of scientific principles and procedures in therapeutic counseling, guidance and human development to provide assistance in understanding and solving a mental, emotional, physical, social, moral, educational, spiritual or career development and adjustment problem that a client may have;

          N. "counseling-related field" as defined by rule, means a degree in guidance counseling, mental health-community counseling or agency counseling; psychology, clinical psychology or counseling psychology; human services; family services; human and family studies; art therapy; [and] or art education with an emphasis in art therapy;

          O. "defined by rule" means rules [and regulations] published by the board to establish criteria, standards and procedures relevant to application, licensing, administration and enforcement of the Counseling and Therapy Practice Act;

          P. "department" means the regulation and licensing department or the division of the department designated to administer the counseling and therapy practice board;

          Q. "diagnosis and treatment planning" means assessing, analyzing and providing diagnostic descriptions of mental, emotional or behavioral conditions; exploring possible solutions; and developing and implementing a treatment plan for mental, emotional and psychosocial adjustment or development. "Diagnosis and treatment planning" shall not be construed to permit the performance of any act that counselors or therapists are not educated, trained and licensed to perform;

          R. "evaluation" means the act of making informed decisions based on the use and analysis of pertinent data;

          S. "internship" means a distinctly defined, pre-graduate, supervised clinical experience in which the student refines, enhances and integrates professional knowledge with basic counselor or therapist skills appropriate to the student's program and preparation for postgraduate professional placement;

          T. "licensure" means the process by which a state agency or government grants permission to an individual to engage in a given profession and to use the designated title of that profession after the applicant has attained the minimal degree of competency necessary to ensure that the public health, safety and welfare are reasonably well protected;

          U. "marriage and family therapy" means the assessment, diagnosis and treatment of nervous and mental disorders, whether cognitive, affective or behavioral, within the context of marriage and family systems;

          V. "mental disorder" means any of several conditions or disorders that meet the diagnostic criteria contained in the diagnostic and statistical manual of the American psychiatric association or the world health organization's international classification of mental disorders;

          W. "practicum" means a distinctly defined, supervised clinical experience in which the student develops basic counselor or therapist skills and integrates professional knowledge. Practicum is completed prior to or concurrent with an internship;

          X. "program" means a structured sequence of curricular and clinical experiences housed within an academic unit;

          Y. "referral" means evaluating and identifying the needs of a client to determine the advisability of referrals to other specialists, advising the client of such judgments and communicating as requested or deemed appropriate to such referral sources;

          Z. "research" means a systematic effort to collect, analyze and interpret quantitative or qualitative data that describe how social characteristics, behavior, emotions, cognition, disabilities, mental disorders and interpersonal transactions among individuals, couples, families and organizations interact;

          AA. "standard" means a minimal criterion that must be met; and

          BB. "substance abuse-related [fields] field" means a degree in guidance counseling, mental health-community counseling, agency counseling, psychology, clinical psychology, counseling psychology, human services, family services, human and family studies, social work, art therapy [and] or art education with appropriate clinical background and two hundred seventy-six clock hours in education or training in alcohol and drug abuse counseling."

     SECTION 2. Section 61-9A-30 NMSA 1978 (being Laws 1993, Chapter 49, Section 30, as amended) is amended to read:

     "61-9A-30. TERMINATION OF AGENCY LIFE--DELAYED REPEAL.--The counseling and therapy practice board is terminated on July 1, [2021] 2027 pursuant to the provisions of the Sunset Act. The board shall continue to operate according to the provisions of the Counseling and Therapy Practice Act until July 1, [2022] 2028. Effective July 1, [2022] 2028, the Counseling and Therapy Practice Act is repealed."

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