The New York Governor has signed off on a bill creating a new licensure category for Pathologists' Assistants! This move will ensure only qualified individuals undertake Pathologists' Assistant responsibilities. The law also provides Pathologists' Assistants a secure future in New York, thereby supporting the patients and institutions they serve. THIS IS A GIANT "WIN" FOR ALL OF US!!
As an update for Pathologists’ Assistants practicing in New York: It will take one to two years for the licensing law to become fully effective. In the meantime New York still requires a license for us. Any member working in New York or planning to work in New York should have a limited license as a histological technician until the new Pathologists’ Assistant licenses are available.
A State committee will be formed within the next year in order to formulate regulations and requirements regarding the new license, and to create an application process for the license. The law stipulates that the committee will have at least five members, and at least three of them will be Pathologists’ Assistants.
There will be a grandfathering period of two years, during which persons who have been practicing in New York for at least two of the five years prior to this date will be permitted to become licensed if their supervising physicians attest to their experience and competence. After the grandfathering period ends, any new applicants will be required to meet all of the educational standards of the law in order to obtain a license.
A limited license for Pathologists’ Assistants will also be created, permitting practitioners who have completed their education but who have not yet passed their examinations to become employed in New York and giving them a year to complete their examinations. (Individual applicants may request an additional year, subject to approval by the committee).
An exemption for students is included, so this law should not affect clinical rotations in New York. Other very narrow exemptions are also present (people serving a Public Health agency, etc.)
Rosie Falcon, MS, PA(ASCP)cm
Legislative Adjunct to the Board of Trustees