LCPCM approached the Board of Professional Counselors to issue a clarification of the required 3000 supervised clinical hours needed to attain the LCPC license. They agreed to adopt our proposal that defines direct and indirect clinical hours and removes the concept of "adjunctive hours" altogether. This should make the required clinical hours much more attainable.
The LCPC application form has been modified accordingly by removing the previous chart and definitions.
The revised guidelines are as follows:
Revised Guidelines – July 2016
Supervised Clinical Hours Required for the LCPC license
A total of 3000 hours of supervised clinical experience is required for the LCPC license. Up to 1000 master’s level practicum hours may be included in the total 3000 hours. At least 2000 hours must be accrued after the attainment of a master’s degree.
A minimum of 1500 supervised clinical hours must be face to face hours with a client or clients, providing clinical counseling services. These hours are referred to as direct clinical hours.
The remaining 1500 supervised clinical hours of the required 3000 hours may include additional face to face services and all case management services and professional development activities related to the provision of clinical counseling services in an agency or private supervised setting. These hours are referred to as indirect clinical hours.
“Clinical counseling services involves the application of counseling principles andmethods in the diagnosis, prevention, treatment, and amelioration of psychological problems, emotional conditions or mental conditions of individuals or groups.” (Health Occupations Title 17).
Direct Clinical Client Contact Hours: 1500 (minimum
Session time with a client and/or significant others providing face-to- face clinical counseling that includes, but is not limited to the following:
- Individual counseling
- Group counseling
- Family counseling
- Couples counseling
- Treatment planning with client
- Crisis management/intervention
Indirect Clinical Hours: 1500 (maximum)
These hours consist of all case management and professional development activities related to the provision of clinical professional counseling services in an agency or private practice setting. The following are specific examples of clinical activities that are indirect clinical hours and may be counted toward the 3000 hour requirement.
- Intake/assessment by telephone or other means when client is not face to face
- Receiving individual and group supervision at site or at the university
- Consultation with other professionals
- Treatment planning with other professionals
- Case staffing
- Staff meetings
- Related trainings and seminars
- Record keeping
- Report writing
- Case Notes
- Providing clinical training
- Telephone triage
- Case management
- Program development
- Other clinical professional counselor administrative duties as required by the setting in which the clinical hours are accrued.
Years of Experience: 3
Three years of supervised clinical experience is required. Two of the three years of experience must be earned post master’s degree.
Total Clinical Hours: 3000
A total of 3000 hours of supervised clinical experience is required, of which 2000 hours must be acquired post master’s degree. Up to 1000 master’s level practicum hours may be included in the total 3000 hours.
Direct Clinical Client Contact Hours: 1500
A minimum of 1500 face to face clinical client contact hours are required. These are direct session times providing clinical counseling* to clients who are physically present.
Indirect Clinical Hours: 1500
A maximum of 1500 hours of indirect clinical services may be included in the required total of 3000 clinical hours. Indirect clinical hours include all case management and professional development activities related to the provision of clinical counseling services in an agency or private supervised setting.
Face to Face Clinical Supervision Hours: 100
100 hours of face to face clinical supervision by an approved supervisor is required post master’s degree. A minimum of 50 hours must be individual supervision. A maximum of 50 hours may be group supervision. An “approved supervisor”, must be an LCPC or another fully licensed mental health care provider, although a minimum of 50 of the 100 hours of clinical supervision must be provided by an LCPC approved supervisor.
As President of the Licensed Clinical Professional Counselors of Maryland, I do not usually reach out to you on a professional issue unless it is very important. Some of you may have been following the developments with the accrediting agency, CACREP, whose supporters have been trying to restrict the practice of LCPCs who have not attended their accredited programs in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
Right now, supporters of this organization have instituted a campaign to close practice in Virginia to LCPCs from non-CACREP schools, counseling psychology, school psychology, clinical psychology, art/creative therapy master's programs in seven years. While veteran LCPCs from Maryland can transfer their license to Virginia as the laws are currently constructed, the underlying concern is that the CACREP restriction will enter insurance regulations such as in Medicaid, Medicare, and private insurance plans, as has already occurred in Tricare, the Veterans Administration, and Department of Defense schools and programs.
Those who believe in the CACREP only standard have an ideological belief in separating psychology from counseling to create a pure and independent "mental health counseling profession." Whatever the merits or pitfalls of their argument, the fact is that the changes they are promoting could potentially restrict the practice of many Maryland LCPCs in the future, especially if their thinking enters the recently introduced Medicare Bill on Capitol Hill or in the qualifications to practice in a Federally Qualified Behavioral Health Center under the Excellence in Mental Health Act. I do not have a crystal ball to know what will happen precisely, but this movement is certainly concerning and demands a response from those who favor the protection of existing practice rights and greater inclusivity in the future.
I urge you to weigh in on this important issue. I have attached the link below to the Virginia Board of Counseling's website, who is for 30 days accepting comments on this issue. Virginia is a battle ground state, as it was one of the first to license professional counselors; and it is the headquarters for three national counseling associations. Thank you for considering my suggestion.
Here is the Virginia Board comment area that can be found online: http://townhall.virginia.gov/L/comments.cfm?stageid=7071
Dear LCPCM Members:
Virginia is about to enact a regulatory change that would only permit CACREP graduates the right to practice mental health counseling in the Commonwealth of Virginia. If you disagree with this regulatory change, the Virginia Board of Counseling is accepting comments for 30 days at: http://townhall.virginia.gov/L/comments.cfm?stageid=7071
Veteran practitioners are generally given reciprocity in Virginia after practicing for 5 years in Maryland, but the greater concern is the potential negative perception of non-CACREP and counseling psychology graduates that may follow this change. It seems to emphasize an unproven belief that non-CACREP and counseling psychology graduates are inferior in their educational preparation.