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The Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists is fully aware of the devastation and loss that disasters such as hurricanes, floods, and fires can bring to Texas and its citizens.  As a result, the following information is being provided to expedite the response by out-of-state mental health providers when responding to a disaster in Texas, as well as assist licensees with preparing for the next disaster.


Emergency Licensure for Practice Within A Declared Disaster Area

In the event the Governor declares a disaster and issues a proclamation suspending regulatory statutes and rules which would prevent, hinder, or delay necessary action in coping with the declared disaster, any out-of-state psychologist, psychological associate, or specialist in school psychology that would like to help with the disaster recovery efforts may apply for an Emergency Limited Temporary License pursuant to Board rule 463.28.  A copy of the application is available for download by clicking here.  There is no fee associated with applying for or renewing an Emergency Limited Temporary License.

Alternatively, an out-of-state psychologist, psychological associate, or specialists in school psychology may practice in Texas for the purpose of rendering aid, provided the individual holds a current license or certification in good standing in his or her home state.  See Section 418.171 of the Government Code.  Good standing means there is not current disciplinary action on your state psychology license(s).

Therefore, any out-of-state psychologist, psychological associate, or specialists in school psychology with a license or certification in good standing is not required to hold a Texas license in order to practice psychology as part of a disaster relief effort in any of those counties identified in the Governor’s disaster declaration.  It should be noted however, that this limited authority to practice during a declared disaster terminates upon the lifting or expiration of the Governor’s disaster declaration.

The Board does ask that any out-of-state psychologist, psychological associate, or specialists in school psychology planning to practice under this exception notify the Board prior to delivering services.  When notifying the Board, please include your name, home state, licensure type and number, and the location where services will be provided.  Please send notifications by email to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .


Volunteer Registration and Disaster Preparedness

Licensees wishing to volunteer with the recovery efforts in any disaster may contact the following to inquire about volunteer needs:

  1. Texas Disaster Volunteer Registry
  2. The American Red Cross
  3. Texas Psychological Association
  4. Texas Association of School Psychologists
  5. Texas Association of Psychological Associates

The Board would also encourage all of its licensees to explore registering with the Texas Disaster Volunteer Registry, the Medical Reserve Corps, or the Emergency System for Advance Registration of Volunteer Health Professionals.  Advance registration and preparation will not only reduce the administrative burden of verifying volunteers’ identity and credentials during a disaster, but more importantly, it will help ensure your professional skills are brought to bear on those affected by the disaster as quickly as possible.

 

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