Peters Expresses Support for Implicit Bias Training Requirement

Brian Peters

Brian PetersMHA CEO Brian Peters expressed the MHA’s support for the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affair’s new implicit bias training requirement for all professions licensed or registered under the Public Health Code in a story by Michigan Capitol Confidential.

Peters cited the training as the next step in the MHA’s long history of safety and quality improvement work by hospitals led through the MHA Keystone Center. Peters also mentioned that many hospitals in the state have already been offering an implicit bias training prior to the requirement.

“Yes, we might require some time for our clinicians or employees to do this training,” said Peters. “But if we avoid rehospitalizations, if we avoid complications that require an extended hospital stay, we’re going to save them time on the back end by having better outcomes.”

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LARA Rules Requiring Implicit Bias Training Take Effect June 1

The Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) revised Public Health Code Rules requiring implicit bias training for all professions licensed or registered under the Public Health Code, except for Veterinary Medicine, effective June 1.

First-time applicants for licensure or registration must have completed a minimum of two hours of implicit bias training within the previous five years.

Beginning June 1, those renewing licenses or registrations must complete one hour of implicit bias training for each year of their license or registration cycle. However, for renewal applications submitted between the rule’s promulgation date of June 1, 2021, and May 31, 2022, only one hour of training is required. This includes licensees whose 90-day renewal window includes June 1, 2022. For example, a license scheduled for renewal in August 2022 can be renewed in May, requiring only one hour of training regardless of the length of the license or registration cycle. Subsequent renewals would require an hour of training for each year of the license or renewal cycle.

Documentation of this training must be retained for six years from the date of applying for licensure, registration or renewal. The department retains the right to audit licensees or registrants and request documentation of completion of training.

The department released a frequently asked questions document for implicit bias training, which includes clarification that trainings with prerecorded videos must also provide opportunities for interaction between participants and the instructor. Therefore, prerecorded videos without instructor interaction would not satisfy the implicit bias training standard.

Members with questions related to implicit bias training requirements may contact the Bureau of Professional Licensing. For more information, contact Renée Smiddy at the MHA.

Implicit Bias Training Rules Advisory Work Group Releases Final Recommendations

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on July 9 signed Executive Directive 2020-07, directing the state Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) to begin promulgating rules to establish implicit bias training standards as part of the knowledge and skills necessary for health professionals’ licenses and registrations in Michigan. To comply with the directive’s provision to consult with key stakeholders, LARA launched and recently concluded an Implicit Bias Training Rules Advisory Work Group. The group met for eight weeks, spending over 20 hours discussing examples from other states and offering suggestions and feedback for the rules that will be promulgated in Michigan. The work group and subcommittees included representatives from 86 different organizations, including the MHA and several MHA members.

The MHA supports implicit bias training for all healthcare personnel and is working to ensure equitable access and care is provided to all patients. The final recommendations have been shared with the Bureau of Professional Licensing, which will file a request for rulemaking and begin drafting the rule set. The rule promulgation process can be tracked by subscribing to receive administrative rules email notices. Additional ideas and recommendations should be emailed to the Office of Policy & Legislative Affairs.

For more information or to request a copy of the executive summary of the work group’s final recommendations, contact Brittany Bogan or Paige Fults at the MHA.