As part of our advocacy work at NASW-CA, we would like to inform our members about bills which have a direct impact on social work practice. One such bill, AB 1759 (Chapter 520, Statutes of 2022), was signed by Governor Newsom on September 25, 2022. This bill will require applicants for licensure and licensees to take a one-time course on telehealth. The bill also changes the process for continuing education requirements in Law & Ethics for applicants and registrants (ASWs).
With the widespread use of telehealth during the Covid pandemic, the Board of Behavioral Sciences (BBS) sponsored a bill, by Assemblymember Cecilia Aguiar-Curry, to require ASWs and LCSWs as well as the Board’s other licensed mental health providers, to take a one-time three-hour training or coursework in the provision of mental health services via telehealth. This course can be satisfied during graduate school. According to the BBS website, if you want to satisfy this requirement by citing your graduate school education, “you will need to obtain a written certification from the registrar or training director of your school or school program stating that the coursework was a required part of the curriculum for your graduation, or that you had completed the coursework.” If you complete this requirement by taking a Continuing Education course, it must be from a BBS approved provider. This portion of the law will go into effect on July 1, 2023. For more information on this requirement, the BBS has posted this factsheet.
The second part of the bill requires all applicants and registrants (ASWs) for licensure to take a 3-hour law and ethics course during each renewal period. The reason for this change is so that all applicants and registrants for licensure can be educated on new laws as they are implemented. This change applies to all registrants for licensure who renew their registration or whose registration expires on or after January 1, 2023. This course must be taken before your registration is renewed. This requirement still applies even in cases where the registrant has already passed the law and ethics exam. These courses must also be from a BBS approved provider. Lastly, because of this change to the Law & Ethics requirement, applicants who do not pass the Law & Ethics exam will no longer be required to take a 12-hour course starting January 1, 2023. For more information on change to the Law & Ethics requirements, please see this factsheet:
If you have any questions about these changes, please contact our Director of Government Relations and Political Affairs, Rebecca Gonzales at firstname.lastname@example.org.