MMHCA Alert for Mental Health Counselors

Amended Governor’s Orders effective date: July 31, 2020

EXECUTIVE ORDER No. 2020-160

Amended Safe Start Order

Rescission of Executive Orders 2020-110, 2020-115,

                                                               2020-120, 2020-133, and 2020-143

Below is a direct link to the Governor’s orders.

https://www.michigan.gov/whitmer/0,9309,7-387-90499_90705-535195–,00.html

MMHCA wanted to make sure that you were aware of the Governor’s latest Executive Order No. 2020-160.  A link is included for your information and review.  Please note the first directive in this order:

  1. Remote work. Any work that is capable of being performed remotely (i.e., without the worker leaving his or her home or place of residence) must be performed remotely.

This directive clearly says must, not should.  It will require all LPCs and LLPCs to examine their practice carefully.  If, in their clinical judgment, they determine that any client, for clinical reasons, needs to be seen in-person, this should be carefully and thoroughly documented as to why they have chosen to violate the order.  Such documentation is not only clinically indicated, but will serve to protect the LPC should issues arise from this decision.

Dr. Larry Pfaff created a tutorial to assist mental health practitioners in deciding which clients need to be seen in-person, as well as the proper protocols for practicing this way at this time. CLICK HERE to view his tutorial.

Please note that this executive order continues to give us permission to do supervision virtually.

The following is the portion of the Governor’s order that impacts health providers directly.

“Acting under the Michigan Constitution of 1963 and Michigan law, I find it reasonable and necessary, for the reasons outlined above, to order:

  1. Remote work. Any work that is capable of being performed remotely (i.e., without the worker leaving his or her home or place of residence) must be performed remotely.
  1. Workplace safety. Any business or operation that requires its employees to leave their home or place of residence for work is subject to the rules on workplace safeguards in Executive Order 2020-161 or any order that may follow from it.
  1. Individual responsibility. Any individual who leaves his or her home or place of residence must:

(a) Follow social distancing measures recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”), including remaining at least six feet from people from outside the individual’s household to the extent feasible under the circumstances; and (b) Follow the rules described in Executive Order 2020-153 or any order that may follow from its governing masks.”

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