- Special Sections
- Public Notices
Regarding the unlicensed practice of Social Work in NM agencies and having all state workers take responsibility for their quality of practice.
State agencies hire underqualified individuals into highly responsible jobs. Underfills are seldom nationally credentialed and/or state licensed. I am forced to ask how we, as vulnerable consumers, hold these unlicensed providers to a national standard of practice and highly ethical conduct? Can we hold them to anything but their own beliefs and economic and social pressures of their employers? They can not be disciplined by anyone but their employers (for whom discipline may be a disadvantage) and, unfortunately, Tort Law (which costs us all). WHAT IS THE AGENCY'S DUTY TO WARN AS TO THE FACT THAT THEY HAVE USED UNLICENSED UNDER-QUALIFIED WORKERS TO FILL SENSITIVE CRITICAL OPENINGS? I propose to bring these substandard "underfills" into the regulated fold by licensing them as para-professionals (Social Work Assistants)and limit their scope of practice until they can achieve nationally normed, licensed, and responsible practice. It is critical that we have licensed personnel to supervise these paraprofessionals.
I have a modest proposal...and, no, it is not that we eat our state workers. I propose for all levels of worker that can commit malpractice that the worker be charged for half of the insurance cost. With these changes several things will happen:
1) The worker becomes more cognizant of the risk management side of practice.
2) The taxpayer will only be out half of any settlements
3) The worker benefits too; they are less likely to have to loose their material possessions if they have a lost suit. At the end of employment the cost of a statute of limitations tail can be deducted from the employees last check or retirement pay.
4] The state benefits in that substandard workers are likely to self select out of practice.