OCCUPATIONS AND PROFESSIONS
MENTAL HEALTH PRACTICE
In this chapter:
I. "Alternative provider" means a person who, for remuneration, engages in any aspect of mental health practice as defined in RSA 330-A:2, VI, but does not hold a license issued under this chapter to practice as a licensed pastoral psychotherapist, clinical social worker, clinical mental health counselor, or marriage and family therapist, and who has registered with the board prior to July 1, 2007.
II. "Board" means the board of mental health practice.
II-a. "Board investigator" means a board member who is responsible for overseeing the activities of the professional conduct investigation committee.
II-b. "Communication of alleged misconduct" or "allegation" means a written statement received by the board describing a claim of professional misconduct of a licensee under this chapter. The term "allegation" shall include but not be limited to, such uses as "allegation of professional misconduct," "letter of alleged misconduct," "statement of alleged misconduct," and "submission of allegation of misconduct."
II-c. "Complaint" means a communication of alleged misconduct containing information that, as the board shall determine, if true, could violate ethical codes, administrative rules, or the law. A matter is considered a complaint when the board orders the change of status from allegation to complaint.
III. "Client" means a person who seeks or obtains psychotherapy.
IV. "Former client or patient" means a person who was given psychotherapy within the previous 7 years.
V. "Mental health discipline" means the disciplines of those licensed as pastoral psychotherapists, clinical social workers, school social workers, clinical mental health counselors, and marriage and family therapists.
VI. "Mental health practice" means the observation, description, evaluation, interpretation, diagnosis, and modification of human behavior by the application of psychological and systems principles, methods, and procedures for the purpose of preventing or eliminating symptomatic, maladapted, or undesirable behavior and of enhancing interpersonal relationships, work and life adjustments, personal effectiveness, behavioral health, and mental health, as well as the diagnosis and treatment of the psychological and social aspects of physical illness, accident, injury, or disability. Mental health practice may include, but shall not be limited to, those services based on diagnosis and treatment of mental and emotional disorders and psycho-educational or consultative techniques integral to the treatment of such disorders when diagnosis is specified in the most current edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, published by the American Psychiatric Association, or an equivalent of such manual as determined by the board. Notwithstanding any other provision to the contrary, no person licensed or registered under this chapter shall assess the need for medications, prescribe medications, or otherwise practice medicine as defined in RSA 329.
VII. "Mental health practitioner" means persons licensed under this chapter as pastoral psychotherapists, clinical social workers, school social workers, clinical mental health counselors, or marriage and family therapists. For purposes of this chapter, the term clinical social worker shall include independent clinical social worker.
VII-a. "Professional conduct investigator" means a trained mental health practitioner licensed by the board who acts as the agent of the board under the guidance of the board investigator and is authorized to discover facts and make reports to the board.
VIII. "Psychotherapist" means a clinical social worker, school social worker, pastoral psychotherapist, clinical mental health counselor, or marriage and family therapist licensed under this chapter who performs or purports to perform psychotherapy. This definition shall include psychiatrists licensed as physicians under RSA 329 and advanced registered nurse practitioners licensed under RSA 326-B:18 as psychiatric nurse practitioners.
IX. "Psychotherapy" means the professional treatment, assessment, or counseling of a mental or emotional illness, symptom, or condition.
X. "Sexual relations" means the intentional touching of any part of the client's body or any verbal or nonverbal communication for the purpose of sexual arousal or gratification of either party.
Source. 1998, 234:1. 2005, 293:10. 2007, 83:1. 2010, 244:1, 2. 2012, 233:2, eff. July 1, 2013; 269:4, eff. Jan. 1, 2013. 2020, 6:30-32, eff. Mar. 9, 2020.