Q. Is a phlebotomist required to obtain a CLP license if the only task that he or she does is draw blood?
A. The CLP Licensure and Certification Rule does not apply to phlebotomists which only collect specimens. If the phlebotomist performs any moderate complexity test such as a bleeding time as part of their duties, the phlebotomist must obtain a CLP license. Also, the Rule does not apply to persons at facilities which are specimen collection centers only.
Q. If a person only performs tests which are in the category of waived under the CLIA regulations, is he or she required to obtain a CLP license.
A. No, this Rule applies to those persons who perform moderate or high complexity categories of tests as defined by CLIA regulations.
Q. Are histologists required to obtain a CLP license.
A. No, histologists are in the category of specimen preparation but do not perform or report laboratory test results. If a histologist provides any initial interpretation, such as grossing, then the histologist is subject to CLP licensure.
Q. Does a person who is a recent graduate from a formal MT or MLT college program but has not yet passed a national registry exam qualify to be classified as a CLP-MT or CLP-MLT?
A. No, the person would be considered a trainee or a CLP-POCT depending on the situation. This person must be directly supervised while performing and reporting laboratory testing. It is a requirement of the Rule that a person have not only the educational qualifications but also be certified in the CLP category. Once the person receives a passing score from the national registry exam or has one (1) year of laboratory experience performing moderate or high complexity testing then the person qualifies to be classified as a CLP-MT or CLP-MLT. If the person performs moderate complexity testing, in a point of care situation (physician office, hospital unit, etc.) then the person can be classified as a POCT until the person passes the national registry.
Q. Does an on- the- job trained person who has worked in a laboratory since 1987, passed the HEW exam and has been working at a laboratory as a medical technologist since 1989 qualify as a CLP-MT?
A. Yes. A person who has been performing medical technologist tasks since July, 1987 and has passed the HEW exam meets the qualifications for the CLP-MT category.
Q. Must a person performing moderate complexity laboratory testing in a pulmonary functions laboratory obtain a CLP license?
A. Only a WV licensed respiratory therapist performing only the tests which are in the scope of the respiratory therapist license is exempt in this instance. Nurses and other allied health care workers are required to obtain a license regardless of the area or unit where the moderate complexity testing is being performed.
Q. Is a RN or LPN required to obtain CLP licensure if they are only performing very limited moderate complexity testing such as an ACT or blood gases in a unit such as ICU/CCU?
A. Yes, any classification of health care workers other than the ones exempt from the rule (respiratory therapists, PPMP, waived) must obtain a CLP license if performing moderate or high complexity testing.
Q. Can a person who works in Hematology move to a different specialty such as Blood Banking without reapplying for licensure?
A. Yes, as long as the person meets the qualifications for a CLP-MT or CLP-MLT category. During the next annual renewal, changes in job descriptions can be submitted at that time. The definition of a MT states that a broad range of laboratory testing can be performed.
Q. Can nursing related classes count toward the educational credits required for CLP licensure?
A. Only if the course content contains some aspect dealing with improving laboratory testing.
Q. Can I continue to perform laboratory testing if I have my original license but it has expired?
A. No, it is illegal to continue to perform laboratory testing with an expired license. You must cease performing moderate complexity laboratory testing until a valid license is obtained. Your employer may suspend you from employment rather than risk sanctions from the accrediting agency, such as CLIA
Q. Do management and computer classes count toward the contact hours required for licensure?
A. Yes, if the laboratory tasks require improving management or computer related skills.
Q. Does a person who has an associate degree, who is also certified as a medical laboratory technician (MLT) and has 15 years of experience qualify to be classified a CLP-MT if their facility job description gives him or her the title of Medical Technologist?
A. No, the persons job description may not follow the requirements of the CLP rule. The person in this scenario would be classified as a CLP-MLT.
Q. If my license expires on February 1, 2000, does the contact hours that were earned in December of 1999 count toward the 1999 license or the 2000 renewal?
A. The contact hours must be awarded during the year covered by the renewal and expiration dates of each license. It is not according to the calendar year. In the above situation, the time frame to earn the 10 contact hours of continuing education is from February 1, 1999 to February 1, 2000.
Q. How long is the turn-around-time for processing an application or renewal of the CLP license?
A. Allow one (1) week once the application is received in this office (if all required documentation is enclosed). Allow an additional few days for the mailing process.
Q. Can the Office of Laboratory Service licensure program personnel give permission for a person to perform laboratory testing at their workplace if they do not have a current license?
A. The licensure program personnel at the OLS cannot give permission for someone to continue to perform testing illegally on an expired license. The licensure program mails the renewals well in advance of the expiration date of the licenses. It is the responsibility of the licensees to return their paperwork along with the required continuing education by the return date so there is enough time for the licenses to be processed. There is no grace period. Once the license expires, a person cannot perform laboratory testing until a new license is in-hand.
Q. What causes the most delays in processing renewals?
A. Licensees forget to enclose check, certificates and continuing education documentation. Also, incorrect home or work address in the licensee files. Please notify Marilyn Richards at the OLS of address or name changes to keep the files current.
Q. Whom do I ask for at the OLS if I have a licensure question?
A. Marilyn Richards processes and maintains files on all licensees.
If Marilyn is not available, ask for Barbara Eckerd or Sharon Cibrik.
For continuing education resources offered by the state call Sharon Cibrik or in the Training and Evaluation Section. We encourage all who have questions to call.
Q. Who is obligated to initiate the process of the license renewal?
A. The individual licensee is responsible for seeing that the license is kept up-to- date. However, the Licensure Office of the OLS accommodates licensees by sending out renewal notices 2 months to 6 weeks prior to the expiration date.
Q. Can the licensee be "fired" for not having an up-to-date license?
A. It is illegal to work without the license performing moderate or high complexity testing. How the individual laboratory deals with this failure is a management decision. There have been suspensions of employment in some laboratories. "Firing" would be within the rights of a lab to avoid losing CLIA certification.
Q. C.E. is required for license renewal. Is the state responsible for furnishing this C.E.?
A. No. The OLS has always furnished training opportunities for laboratorians in WV. As part of our on-going commitment to lab improvement, we still offer C.E. and have tried to fill the need as we see it. Correspondence courses were devised to accommodate larger numbers of persons at the least inconvenience to them. We offer workshops depending on the need on laboratory related topics. We also co-sponsor workshops with the South Eastern Region National Laboratory Training Network (NLTN). Participation in any of the OLS training is entirely voluntary unless your laboratory management mandates.
Q. Why are there so many different expiration dates?
A. Initially, anticipating a large number of applicants (about 3000), the licensing office personnel thought it best to "stagger" issuance of licenses rather than having to deal with 3000 applications at one time. So we divided them into four (4) groups with due dates of Dec. 1, Jan. 1, Feb. 1 and March 1 each year. Those not in the initial group renew their license on the anniversary of their first license.
Q. If my license should lapse for a few months, do I retain my initial renewal date?
A. Yes, if you have been working on an expired license. If you are not employed for an extended period of time and do not renew your license for this period of time, you may be reinstated by submitting the $25 dollar fee and C.E. documentation. Your new expiration date will be one year after reinstatement.