Occupational Therapists (OTs) and Occupational Therapy Assistants in Tennessee are required to demonstrate continued competence by obtaining twenty-four (24) continued competence credits in the two (2) calendar years that precede the licensure renewal year.
Continued Competence – A dynamic, multidimensional process in which an occupational therapist or an occupational therapy assistant develops and maintains the knowledge, performance skills, interpersonal abilities, critical reasoning skills, and ethical reasoning skills necessary to perform his or her professional responsibilities.
The due date for licensure renewal is the last day of the month in which a licensee’s birthday falls pursuant to the Division of Health Related Boards “birthdate renewal system” contained on the renewal certificate as the expiration date.
The Board shall require each licensed occupational therapist and occupational therapist assistant to participate in a minimum number of activities to promote continued competence for the two (2) calendar years (January 1-December 31) that precede the licensure renewal year (a.k.a. biennium).
Beginning January 1, 2008 all applicants for licensure, renewal of licensure, reactivation of licensure, or reinstatement of licensure must attest to having completed continued competence requirements for the two (2) calendar years (January 1-December 31) that precede the licensure renewal, reactivation or reinstatement year.
The requirements for continued competence activities are defined as planned learning experiences that occur for occupational therapists and occupational therapist assistants. Content of the experiences must relate to a licensee’s current or anticipated roles and responsibilities in occupational therapy. Qualified learning experiences may include theoretical or practical content related to the practice of occupational therapy; research; management; or the development, administration, supervision, and teaching of clinical practice or service delivery programs in occupational therapy. The purpose of this requirement is to assist in assuring safe and effective practices in the provision of occupational therapy services to the citizens of Tennessee.
Occupational Therapists and Occupational Therapy Assistants are required to complete twenty-four (24) continued competence credits for the two (2) calendar years (January 1 – December 31) that precede the licensure renewal year.
- Twelve (12) of the required twenty-four (24) continued competence credits must be directly related to the delivery of occupational therapy services.
- One (1) hour of the required twenty-four (24) continued competence credits shall pertain to the AOTA Code of Ethics or other ethics related continued competence activities which have implications for the practice of occupational therapy.
- One (1) hour of the required twenty-four (24) continued competence credits shall pertain to the occupational therapy portions of T.C.A. §§ 63-13-101, et seq., the Tennessee Occupational and Physical Therapy Practice Act, and shall pertain to Chapter 1150-02, General Rules Governing the Practice of Occupational Therapy.
- Ten (10) hours of the required twenty-four (24) continued competence credits may pertain to the licensee’s current or anticipated professional role or may be directly related to the delivery of occupational therapy services.
- Twelve (12) hours are allowed from independent learning/study (e.g., CE articles, video, audio, and/or online courses.)
Approved Continued Competence Activity Providers:
- American Medical Association (AMA)
- American Nurses Association (ANA)
- American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) and AOTA approved providers
- American Physical Therapy Association (APTA)
- American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA)
- International Association of Continuing Education (IACET)
- Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America (RESNA)
- Tennessee Occupational Therapy Association (TOTA)
- State occupational therapy associations
- State occupational therapy regulatory agencies
- Accredited colleges and universities
The Board does not pre-approve continued competence activities. It is the responsibility of the licensed occupational therapist and occupational therapist assistant to use his/her professional judgment in determining whether or not the activities are applicable and appropriate to his/her professional development and meet the standards specified in these rules.
Each licensee must retain documentation of completion of all continued competence requirements of this rule for a period of five (5) years from when the requirements were completed. This documentation must be produced for inspection and verification, if requested in writing by the Board during its verification process.
The Tennessee Board of Occupational Therapy (http://health.state.tn.us/Boards/OT/) is responsible for safeguarding the health, safety, and welfare of Tennesseans, by requiring that all who practice occupational therapy within the state be qualified to practice. The Board interprets the laws, rules, and regulations to determine the appropriate standards of practice in an effort to ensure the highest degree of professional conduct. The Board is responsible for the investigation of alleged violations of the Practice Act and rules and is responsible for the discipline of licensees who are found guilty of such violation. Rules and regulations available: http://tennessee.gov/sos/rules/1150/1150-02.20100119.pdf
Professional Development Resources is an AOTA approved provider of continuing education (#3159). The assignment of AOTA CEUs does not imply endorsement of specific course content, products, or clinical procedures by AOTA. Over 100 online and home study courses are available at: http://www.pdresources.org/Courses/Occupational-Therapy/AllCourses/CourseID/1/
Tennessee OTs may earn up to 12 hours per renewal through PDResources.org coursework.