License Requirements

Occupational Therapist/Occupational Therapy Assistant License Requirements:

Mississippi State Department of Health

Occupational Therapists and Occupational Therapy Assistants are licensed by the Mississippi State Department of Health.

The Mississippi State Department of Health is located at 143B LeFleur’s Square in Jackson, MS or you can contact them directly at the following:

Mississippi State Department of Health/Licensure
P. O. Box 1700
Jackson, MS 39215-1700

Phone: 601-364-7360
Fax: 601-364-5057


 

Helpful Links

Download the Mississippi Occupational Therapy and Occupational Therapy Assistant Packet (includes information, application and verification forms)

Click to Renew your Mississippi Occupational Therapy License Online

On-line verification and listing of licensed professionals is now available for currently active licenses:
Click to List or Verify Mississippi Licenses Online

 


 

Mississippi Advisory Council in Occupational Therapy

The Mississippi State Board of Health (Board) regulates the occupational therapy profession in the state of Mississippi.  This regulation is done with the advice and counsel provided by the Mississippi Advisory Council in Occupational Therapy (Council).  The Council consists of 5 members who serve 3-year terms.  These members are nominated by their peers.  The Board regularly seeks nominations and referrals from the Mississippi Occupational Therapy Association when a position on the Council is being vacated.  The current Council members include:

Megan Ladner, OT, MS

OT Member/Chair (term expires 12/31/17)

Tina Melton, OT

OT Member/Secretary (term expires 12/31/17)

Scott Cockroft, OT

OT Member (term expires 12/31/19)

Michelle Pierce, OTA

OTA Member (term expires 12/31/19)

Rebecca Barry, RDH, Ph.D.

Public Member (term expires 12/31/19)

The Council meets regularly during the first month of the year.  Additional meetings are held when necessary.  MSOTA and the Council have developed a good relationship in which we communicate matters directly affecting the OT profession and work together to provide the best and most accurate information possible to the MSDH Board. 

 

FAQ’S of Advisory Council

Q:  In regards to the OT/OTA supervision regulation, does the count toward the 7th treatment day or 21 calendar days start over if an OT sees a patient in the middle of the cycle (e.g. on the 4th treatment day)?

A:  The supervision regulation is based on the patient’s 7th visit regardless of if an OT completes a treatment in the middle of the cycle.  The purpose of the visit is to update the OTA on changes in the patient’s condition, treatment plan, and/or response to treatment as well as to modify the treatment plan in order to ensure the team is on the same page with that particular patient.  The supervision regulation not only safeguards the patient but also serves to protect the licensed OT/OTA as well.  

If a supervisory visit occurs when the OT completes the 4th treatment, this would be more frequent supervision than is called for and would be well within the scope of the regulations.  However, if the supervision timeline simply starts over each time an OT sees the patient, this appears to be evading the intentions of the regulations because it is unclear if a supervisory visit is occurring for that patient.

Q:  Does the patient need to be seen by both the OT and the OTA at the supervisory visit (either the 7th visit or 21 calendar days)?

A:  In reference to the joint supervisory visit, both the OT and OTA should both be there with the patient.  They are not required to be present together for the entire treatment time, but they must meet to assess the patient’s progress, review the treatment plan, and modify the plan/goals if needed.

Q:  For supervision purposes, is the 7th visit based on the patient's 7th visit or the individual OTA's 7th time to treat that patient?

A:  When an OTA is involved in the treatment, the 7th visit is based on the number of times the patient has received treatment, regardless of the number of OTs or OTAs providing the treatment.

Q:  For supervision purposes, is the 7th visit based on the patient's 7th visit or the individual OTA's 7th time to treat that patient?

A:  When an OTA is involved in the treatment, the 7th visit is based on the number of times the patient has received treatment, regardless of the number of OTs or OTAs providing the treatment.

Q:  The supervision regulations in our state are stricter than other states.  Can we loosen the regulations so OTAs can be more easily utilized?

A:  The Advisory Council discussed OTA supervision at length at the October 2017 meeting and at the January 2018 meeting.  The Council reviewed the various pros and cons of changing the regulations and gathered opinions from various key stakeholders across the state, including rehab directors and MSOTA representatives in order to have additional information to make a more informed decision.  While the Council does understand that many states have more lenient regulations for OTA supervision, based on the information gathered, the Council decided to keep the current regulations as is.

The Council did discuss the option of utilizing telehealth video conferencing as a means to ease the burden of the face-to-face visit and were open to adding this to the regulations.  However, the Mississippi State Department of Health representatives present at the meeting informed the Council that the Legislature has placed a hold on all telepractice issues.  Hopefully this will be lifted soon so that progress can be made with this initiative.

Q: In light of the model of care changing in the way Medicare approaches payment and hospital and rehab stay, patients will likely enter the home health settings sooner. With the discussion of increasing the ratio of supervising OT to COTA how will you address the face to face supervision within the home? As, it is difficult to plan a face to face with one COTA , it would be even more difficult to provide supervision with 2 COTAs let alone 3. How do you see the effects of the utilization of COTAs within this setting, as occupational therapy is under utilized in this setting already?

A:  Telehealth may be an option to address the face-to-face requirement of the supervision regulation in the future, but as mentioned in the previous question the MSDH is not allowed to develop regulations related to telehealth at this time.

Remember, the OT and OTA are not required to be present together for the entire treatment time, but they must meet to assess the patient’s progress, review the treatment plan, and modify the plan/goals if needed.  According to state regulations there is no minimum amount of time required, but you may need to check with your company policy. 

Q:  How do supervision visits work for PRN OTAs providing therapy on the weekends?  Say your OT and two FT COTAs work Monday through Friday and you have a PRN COTA work on Saturday?

A:  The supervision regulations still apply and relates to the number of times the patient has received occupational therapy services.  The PRN OTA is serving in the place of the primary OTA.  Therefore, as long as the patient has received a supervisory visit with the primary OT/OTA within the appropriate time frame, no additional supervisory visit is needed.  The PRN OTA should follow the established plan of care. 

However, this is where ethical and legal issues merge.  Communication must occur between the PRN OTA and the primary OT to ensure that a clear treatment plan is in place and that the OTA feels comfortable with the given task.  It is the ethical responsibilities of the OT and the OTA to ensure safety for each patient. 

Q:  If an OT already has 2 full-time OTA's, how do the supervision visits work for PRN OTAs? 

A:  An official supervisory visit is not necessarily required just because a PRN OTA is treating, unless it is the 7th patient visit or the 21st calendar day for that patient. 

If it is a day when both full-time OTAs are working, then the PRN OTA must be supervised by an OT who is supervising less than 2 OTAs.  This may mean that a PRN OT must be called in to supervise.  However, if the PRN OTA is working the weekend in place of the regular OTA and the regular OTA is not working that same day, it is acceptable for the OT to communicate with and supervise the PRN OTA until the regular OTA returns.

Q:  Are OTs allowed to supervise only 2 OTAs total, or only 2 OTAs at a specific facility?

A:  The regulations state that “an occupational therapist may not supervise/consult with more than two (2) occupational therapy assistants except in school settings, or settings where maintenance or tertiary type services are provided, such as the regional treatment centers under the direction of the Department of Mental Health.”  Therefore, unless justified by working in one of the given exceptions, an OT should supervise only 2 OTA’s at any given time no matter if they are in different facilities.