(a) For the purposes of this section, the term:
(1) “Audiology assistant” means an individual who is registered with the Board of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology to engage in practice as an audiology assistant.
(b) A person who practices as an audiology assistant shall be registered with the Board according to rules adopted by the Mayor, renew the registration as required by rule, and pay the required registration fee established by the Board.
(c) To be eligible for registration as an audiology assistant, a person shall provide proof acceptable to the Board that he or she:
(1) Meets the minimum qualifications established by the Mayor through rulemaking;
(2) Has graduated from an accredited college or university with at least an associate’s degree based on a program of studies primarily focusing on audiology or hearing sciences and disorders, or a program determined by the Board to be substantially equivalent in subject matter and extent of training to an associate’s degree in audiology;
(3) Has successfully completed the clinical observation hours and supervised clinical assisting experience hours required by regulations adopted by the Mayor; and
(4) Has paid the required registration fee.
(d) A person shall not practice as an audiology assistant or use the title of audiology assistant unless he or she:
(1) Is registered with the Board to practice as an audiology assistant;
(2) Practices under either the direct or indirect supervision and direction of a licensed audiologist, except as provided for in subsection (e)(2) of this section; and
(3) Wears a name tag bearing the title “audiology assistant” while acting in a professional capacity and displays his or her current registration in a conspicuous place in the office where the audiology assistant is employed.
(e) A registered audiology assistant shall not:
(1) Work independently;
(2) Practice as an audiology assistant, unless doing so while under either the direct or indirect supervision of a licensed audiologist or an audiologist employed by any agency of the federal government performing the duties of that agency; or
(3) Provide any services for which the audiology assistant has not received training to enable the audiology assistant to competently and safely perform the assigned tasks and job duties, or that cannot be delegated by an audiologist as set forth in rulemaking by the Board.
(f) A licensed audiologist may delegate duties to an audiology assistant that are appropriate to the training and experience of the audiology assistant and within the scope of practice of the supervising audiologist; provided, that the audiologist shall not delegate to an audiology assistant any task or function identified through rulemaking as a task or function that shall not be delegated.
(g) For a period of one year following March 26, 2014, unless further time is granted by the Mayor through rulemaking, a person who has received appropriate training for the tasks assigned may practice as an audiology assistant regardless of registration with the Board, only while under the supervision of a licensed audiologist, except as provided for in subsection (e)(2) of this section.
(h) For a period of one year following March 26, 2014, a person practicing as an audiology assistant may register as an audiology assistant notwithstanding the educational requirements of subsection (c)(2) of this section; provided, that the person has been employed under either the direct or indirect supervision of an audiologist for a minimum of 15 hours per week during at least 3 of the 5 years preceding March 26, 2014.
Effect of Amendments
The 2014 amendment by D.C. Law 20-96 added this section.