Ohio AG Seeks to License Police
Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost would like to license police officers and provide more training. According the Akron Beacon Journal, Yost wants the state to license police officers as it does barbers, nurses and many other professionals. Licensure would allow an oversight board to step in and act if an officer’s actions bring his or her competency into question.
COVID Becomes Top Killer of Police Officers
COVID has killed more police officers in 2020 than any other cause, according to the Pew Charitable Trusts’ Stateline news service. While numbers vary, the Fraternal Order of Police counts at least 235 deaths from COVID. The Officer Down Memorial Page Inc., a non-profit honoring fallen officers, reports an increase of 90% for line-of-duty deaths, with the spike caused almost exclusively by COVID. The next largest category is gunfire, which has accounted for 35 police deaths in 2020.
Wis. License Reciprocity Helps Out-of-State Health Workers
Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers issued an emergency order Oct. 1 that provides interstate license reciprocity for health care workers. The order allows health care workers from other states with valid licenses and credentials to practice in Wisconsin, according to WBAY. “Our hospitals are being stretched to the limit, and we need to take action to assist our front line medical professionals with their life-saving work,” says Evers.
Texas Faces Social Work Licensing Backlog
Obtaining a license to practice social work in Texas takes applicants months, according to Spectrum News. A new state agency that launched Sept. 1 hopes to streamline the application process and reduce the applicant backlog. The agency, which houses four boards, plans to allow applicants to submit information online rather than through the mail, and it will eliminate the need for the oversight board to approve what are known as supervision plans. The agency also will authorize more overtime.
Mental Health Treatment De-emphasized on Fla. Doc Apps
In an attempt to destigmatize mental-health counseling, two Florida licensing boards voted to change medical history questions that appear on physician licensure applications, according to Panhandle. The Florida Board of Medicine and Board of Osteopathic Medicine decided to whittle down the questions from six to just two. In addition, the boards decided to make a statement on the application letting applicants know they need not disclose previous counseling sessions for certain things, including stress and anxiety.
NAMI, Snack Maker Target Mental Health License Questions
Food company Kind and the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) plan to petition five states to reconsider asking mental health questions on board license applications. According to The Hill, the states include Florida, Wyoming, Alabama, Oklahoma and Idaho. Recent studies show 40% of physicians fear getting mental health help, as they worry about this may affect their medical licenses.