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Practice Act

Provisions of Public Act 23-31

Music Therapist

Sec. 43. Section 20-195ggg of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2023): [(a)] As used in this section and sections 44 to 47, inclusive, of this act:

(1) "Commissioner" means the Commissioner of Public Health;

 (2) "Department" means the Department of Public Health; [(1)]

(3) "Music therapy" means the clinical and evidence-based use of music interventions to accomplish individualized goals within a therapeutic relationship by a credentialed professional who has completed a music therapy program approved by the American Music Therapy Association, or any successor of said association; and

(4) "Music therapist" means a person has been licensed as a music therapist under the provisions of this act.

Sec. 44. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2023) (a) No person may use the title "music therapist" or "licensed music therapist" or make use of any title, words, letters, abbreviations or insignia that may reasonably be confused with licensure as a music therapist unless such person is licensed pursuant to section 45 of this act or has been issued a temporary permit pursuant to section 46 of this act.

(b) The provisions of this section shall not apply to a person who (1) is licensed, certified or regulated under the laws of this state in another profession or occupation, including, but not limited to, occupational therapy, physical therapy, speech and language pathology, audiology or counseling, or is supervised by such a licensed, certified or regulated person, and uses music in the practice of such person's licensed, certified or regulated profession or occupation that is incidental to such practice, provided the person does not hold himself or herself out to the public as a music therapist, (2) is a student enrolled in a music therapy educational program or graduate music therapy educational program approved by the American Music Therapy Association, or any successor of said association, and music therapy is an integral part of the student's course of study and such student is performing such therapy under the direct supervision of a music therapist, or (3) is a professional whose training and national certification attests to such person's ability to practice such person's certified occupation or profession and whose use of music is incidental to the practice of such occupation or profession, provided such person does not hold himself or herself out to the public as a music therapist.

Sec. 45. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2023) (a) On and after October 1, 2023, the Commissioner of Public Health shall grant a license as a music therapist to any applicant who, except as provided in subsections (b) and (c) of this section, furnishes evidence satisfactory to the commissioner that such applicant (1) has earned a bachelor's or graduate degree in music therapy or a related field from an accredited institution of higher education, and (2) holds a current certification as a music therapist from the Certification Board for Music Therapists, or any successor of said board. The commissioner shall develop and provide application forms. The application fee shall be three hundred fifteen dollars.

(b) An applicant for licensure by endorsement shall present evidence satisfactory to the commissioner that the applicant is licensed or certified as a music therapist, or as a person entitled to perform similar services under a different designation, in another state or jurisdiction that has requirements for practicing in such capacity that are substantially similar to, or higher than, those of this state and that there are no disciplinary actions or unresolved complaints pending in this state or any other state.

 (c) Licenses issued under this section shall be renewed annually pursuant to section 19a-88 of the general statutes. The fee for such renewal shall be one hundred ninety dollars. Each licensed music therapist applying for license renewal shall furnish evidence satisfactory to the commissioner of having current certification with the Certification Board for Music Therapists, or any successor of said board, and having obtained continuing education units for certification as required by said board.

(d) (1) Any individual who has been convicted of any criminal offense may request, at any time, that the commissioner determine whether such individual's criminal conviction disqualifies the individual from obtaining a license issued or conferred by the commissioner pursuant to this section or section 46 of this act based on (A) the nature of the conviction and its relationship to the individual's ability to safely or competently perform the duties or responsibilities associated with such license, (B) information pertaining to the degree of rehabilitation of the individual, and (C) the time elapsed since the conviction or release of the individual. An individual making such request shall include (i) details of the individual's criminal conviction, and (ii) any payment required by the commissioner. The commissioner may charge a fee of not more than fifteen dollars for each request made under this subsection. The commissioner may waive such fee. (2) Not later than thirty days after receiving a request under this subsection, the commissioner shall inform the individual making such request whether, based on the criminal record information submitted, such individual is disqualified from receiving or holding a license issued pursuant to this section. (3) The commissioner is not bound by a determination made under this subsection, if, upon further investigation, the commissioner determines that the individual's criminal conviction differs from the information presented in the determination request.

Sec. 46. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2023) The Department of Public Health may issue a temporary permit to an applicant for licensure as a music therapist who holds a bachelor's degree or higher in music therapy or a related field. Such temporary permit shall authorize the holder of the temporary permit to practice music therapy under the general supervision of a licensed music therapist at all times during which the holder of the temporary permit performs music therapy. Such temporary permit shall be valid for a period not to exceed three hundred sixty-five calendar days after the date of attaining such bachelor's degree or higher and shall not be renewable. No temporary permit shall be issued under this section to any applicant against whom professional disciplinary action is pending or who is the subject of an unresolved complaint in this state or any other state. The commissioner may revoke a temporary permit for good cause, as determined by the commissioner. The fee for a temporary permit shall be fifty dollars.

Sec. 47. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2023) The Commissioner of Public Health may deny an application of an individual or take any disciplinary action set forth in section 19a-17 of the general statutes against a music therapist for any of the following reasons: (1) Failure to conform to the accepted standards of the profession; (2) conviction of a felony, provided any action taken is based upon (A) the nature of the conviction and its relationship to the license holder's ability to safely or competently practice as a music therapist, (B) information pertaining to the degree of rehabilitation of the license holder, and (C) the time elapsed since the conviction or release; (3) fraud or deceit in obtaining or seeking reinstatement of a license to practice music therapy; (4) fraud or deceit in the practice of music therapy; (5) negligent, incompetent or wrongful conduct in professional activities; (6) physical, mental or emotional illness or disorder resulting in an inability to conform to the accepted standards of the profession; (7) alcohol or substance abuse; or (8) wilful falsification of entries in any hospital, patient or other record pertaining to music therapy. The commissioner may order a license holder to submit to a reasonable physical or mental examination if such license holder's physical or mental capacity to practice safely is the subject of an investigation. The commissioner may petition the superior court for the judicial district of Hartford to enforce such order or any action taken pursuant to section 19a-17 of the general statutes. The commissioner shall give notice and an opportunity to be heard on any contemplated action under section 19a-17 of the general statutes.