Telesupervision and Teletherapy in Illinois
Due to the recent events surrounding Coronavirus/COVID-19, the following message was sent to the Illinois Department Chairs, Program Directors, and Clinic Directors from Angela Beckman-Anthony, ISHA President-Elect.
There have been a lot of questions and discussion about telepractice and telesupervision over the past few days as we all sort out the changes to our clinical and academic training programs due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and the transition for many of us to online teaching. This informaiton was gathered by Angela through email conversations with Carol Szymanski, who has been in contact with Jim Morphew, ISHA Lobbyist, to confirm this interpretation of the law.
You may have recently received an email from ASHA/CFCC outlining the allowance for telesupervision for students. However, telesupervision is NOT allowed under Illinois law, therefore preventing any Illinois training programs from using telesupervision. This information is in the RULES under the Illinois Speech-Langauge Pathology and Audiology Practice Act.
Based on these rules, Illinois law requires “on site” supervision (meaning that student and supervisor need to be in the same location), and ASHA/CFCC guidelines do not supersede this law.
However, clinical hours CAN be awarded for telesupervision of virtual patients or simulations. Since these are not real consumers in the state of Illinois, it is not regulated by state law.
Per the Illinois Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology Practice Act, licensed SLPs in Illinois are allowed to provide teletherapy with the appropriate technology (see standards regarding HIPPA compliance, etc.). There are many resources regarding teletherapy linked on the ISHA website that were just posted late last week.
When conducting teletherapy, if a student and supervisor are in the same location, while the client is connected remotely, this is allowed under Illinois law, and the student can count the clinical hours.
As we all continue to navigate this constantly changing situation, ISHA will do its best to keep the membership up-to-date.