Let’s defeat this dangerous proposal

To the editor:I am writing to bring an important issue to light, one that affects any individual who uses the health care system in New Hampshire.A proposed amendment to House Bill 446 attacks individuals who work in “allied health” — respiratory therapy, physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech language pathology.Under the current system, all such individuals are required to obtain and maintain a license to practice. The main purpose of licensure is to protect the public. It ensures that individuals cannot practice unless they have met the requirements set forth in state law.Now comes the Legislature. Under the amendment to HB 446 the House wishes to deregulate the allied health laws, making licensure voluntary.Individuals who did not wish to obtain a license to practice respiratory care, for example, would not be required to do so. Yet they would still be able to call themselves respiratory care practitioners and have hands-on care of critically ill adults, children and newborns.These individuals would also be exempt from participating in obtaining any continuing education credits, currently required to ensure that those with active practice in the profession stay current on trends in health care.The Legislature has fallen off the deep end this time.I would ask that any person licensed under the allied health profession contact their state representatives and inform them of the damage they are about to create to the public and health care workers of New Hampshire.We cannot allow the “bad eggs” to come running to our state to practice on our citizens and potentially cause harm or even death and not even have a system in place to control and monitor them.Please help us ensure that HB 446 is defeated.Robert FishwickChairN.H. Respiratory Care Practitioners Governing Board

Categories: Cook on Concord