CFCC Live Chat: COVID Accommodations

March 16, 2022
8:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.​

This live online chat will discuss the COVID accommodations for Audiology and SLP graduate students and SLP clinical fellows. The following CFCC committee chairs will provide updates and answer participant questions:

  • Tom Muller, PhD, CCC-A, CFCC Committee Chair, Clinical Professor/Clinic Coordinator of Clinical Education: Audiology, University of Arizona
  • Nancy McMahon, AuD, CCC-A, CFCC Vice Chair for Audiology, Clinical Professor, Director of Clinical Education, Clinic Director - UCONN Speech and Hearing Clinic, University of Connecticut
  • Amy Thorpe Wiley, M.Ed., CCC-SLP, CFCC Vice Chair for SLP, ProMedica Russell J. Ebeid Children’s Hospital, Toledo, Ohio

Additional panelists:

  • Todd Philbrick, CAE, Chief Certification Officer, ASHA, Rockville, Maryland
  • Amanda Gallagher, MA, CCC-SLP, Associate Director, Clinical Certification, ASHA, Rockville, Maryland

This free event is open to all ASHA members and non-members. It is not offered for PDHs, CMHs, or ASHA CEUs.

Following is the transcript from this text-based event (no audio or video).

ASHA Moderator

Welcome to the CFCC live chat on COVID Accommodations.

We will be getting started shortly. However, before we begin taking questions, I would like to make a few administrative comments.

  • Please keep in mind that this is a web chat and, therefore, there is no audio.
  • Questions are typically posted one at a time, in the order they are received.
  • Upon formulating a response, panelists will post answers to your questions.
  • To ensure we get to as many questions as possible, we ask that you please begin typing them in now.

Okay, it's officially time to start. Panelists, please introduce yourselves.

Nancy McMahon

Good evening, I am Nancy McMahon, Au.D., Vice Chair of Audiology for CFCC

Tom Muller

Hi folks! I am Tom Muller, the current CFCC chairperson. I am also an clinical professor at the University of Arizona, and coordinator of clinical education in Audiology.

Amanda Gallagher, ASHA

I’m Amanda Gallagher, MA CCC-SLP, Director, ASHA Clinical Certification Programs.

Todd Philbrick, ASHA

Good evening everyone. My name is Todd Philbrick, ASHA and I am ASHA's Chief Certification Officer and ex-officio to the CFCC.

Amy Thorpe Wiley
Good evening, !'m Amy Thorpe Wiley, Vice Chair of SLP

ASHA Moderator

Thank you panelists.

Again, I would like to remind everyone that there is no audio for this chat - it is text based only.

Okay, I will now begin posting the questions.

Question 1: Submitted by Annette DeRenzo

Is it ASHA's intention to continue to allow SLP CF's to obtain CF Hours through teletherapy on a permanent bases? Or will it be extended past the Dec. 2022 deadline?

Nancy McMahon

CFCC is currently in the process of determining what is happening in 2023 and beyond.

Amy Thorpe Wiley

CFCC will be conducting a widespread peer review on this topic

Question 2: Submitted by Kerry Howland

The updated guidance did not mention our first year students (May 2023 graduates). These students have already started accruing hours in telehealth in accordance with the guidance for fall (no limit) and spring (50% in person) and we need to plan their placements for summer. We need to know if Telehealth will be allowed for them. Can you please clarify.

Amanda Gallagher, ASHA

The current COVID Accommodations have been extended until 12/31/2022, requiring a cumulative 125 hours of onsite, in person service delivery OR 50% on site, in person service delivery during the 2022 practicum.

Todd Philbrick, ASHA

We hope have updates to the 2020 standards at the end of the summer that will go into effect on 1/1/2023

Question 3: Submitted by Wendy Hanks

We've had a request for audiology telesupervision -- student and patient in one location and supervisor remote. Currently this is discouraged, right? Any discussion about this changing?

Nancy McMahon

Not at this time.

Question 4: Submitted by Guest

Will CFs be able to complete some or all of their CF experiences via telepractice after 12/31/22? Graduate students are interviewing now for CF positions, but are concerned that they will need to change positions mid-year if the telepractice allowance is not extended?

Nancy McMahon

We are sensitive to these situations and we are currently in discussion on how to handle this moving forward.

Amanda Gallagher, ASHA

Prior to the COVID19 pandemic, Clinical Fellows could petition the CFCC to allow for the use of telepractice within their CF experience. This was reviewed on a case by case basis.

Question 5: Submitted by Lynette Carlson

The new guidelines address students graduating by December 31, 2022. From your website: "For purposes of ASHA certification for students graduating between January 1, 2022, and December 31, 2022, one of the following must be provided on site and in person: (a) at least 50% of supervised clinical practicum between January – December 2022 or (b) a cumulative 125 hours of supervised clinical practicum across the graduate program."

The current wording also leaves out any clarification of counting telepractice time that is accrued this year for students who will graduate after December 31. 2022 (i.e., in 2023 or 2024). Will the telepractice time accrued during this year count for the students graduating after December 31, 2022?

Todd Philbrick, ASHA

Lynette - the hours will be accepted provided they were in compliance with the COVID accommodations at the time.

Question 6: Submitted by Guest

When will a decision be expected regarding CFs? I know students want to secure a position and begin the licensure process? What can we advise them?

Amy Thorpe Wiley

We are getting a lot of questions regarding this and the SLP will prioritize this issue. CFCC SLP Committee will prioritize

Question 7: Submitted by Kerry Howland

Amanda Gallagher, ASHA is that accommodation applicable to May 23 graduates -- only June and December 22. graduates were listed? If May 23 graduates have 125 in person hours will that be acceptable for them?

Amanda Gallagher, ASHA

That is a fair question and one that we cannot yet answer. We hope to have that information by late summer.

Question 8: Submitted by Jen

We have donors to our clinic making decisions on support for the next academic year and are asking for answers on whether we'll be able to continue telepractice to access rural communities. Do you have a date when we might expect an answer to this question? Most financial award decisions are made by the end of the fiscal year, June 30th.

Todd Philbrick, ASHA

Because we want to conduct a widespread peer review updated standards for January 2023 won't be available until late summer.

Nancy McMahon

This is for ASHA certification not for services required by patients and clients.

Question 9: Submitted by Guest

Is there specific research or data being used to guide the decision-making process regarding telepractice for both graduate students and CFs?

Amanda Gallagher, ASHA

The CFCC has consulted with experts in SIG18 and the ASHA Practices Department, and will conduct a wide spread peer review to gather information from individuals in the field in the coming months to further inform decision making.

Question 10: Submitted by Kara M.

Can you confirm (going off of a questions below): Virtual supervision is not permissible? Meaning the student and patient are in the same room. The observing supervisor is off site but observing the session virtually.

Tom Muller

Yes, you are correct: That scenario is not allowed.

Question 11: Submitted by Guest

Thank you for prioritizing the CF issue! After tumultuous graduate school experiences during the pandemic, many graduates are very anxious about making decisions regarding their CF. The uncertainty and unpredictability of the past 2 years is taking a toll on everyone.

Amy Thorpe Wiley

We hear you and our working diligently on this issue

Question 12: Submitted by Cheryl

I know decisions are made before the COVID environment changes. I feel that changes to those decisions need to reflect the COVID changes and the availability of in person experiences.
We need to remember that first year graduate students are earning all of their hours in the on campus clinical experience. So when percentages of in person and 'knee to knee' hours are implemented, these students only have the option of what their on campus clinic can provide.

Tom Muller

We hear you! It is very challenging for everyone when the COVID situation changes. We will try to be as responsive as possible.

Question 13: Submitted by Cheryl

Telepractice is a valid platform for providing services and it has been for years. If we tell our students that the telepractice are 'less than' what does that message mean?

Amy Thorpe Wiley

The CFCC is in the process of determining how to best honor both methods of service delivery while maintaining a well rounded educational experience for our students and CF's

Question 14: Submitted by Jen

Going off of the virtual supervision requirement, If an SLP supervisor is on site with the student and clinician, can an additional supervisor watch the session to provide more robust feedback?

Amanda Gallagher, ASHA


Question 15: Submitted by Guest

I think there is some confusion about telesupervision…telesupervision is currently permitted for CF mentorship until 12/31/22, right? I believe the question bekow relates to audiology telesupervision

Tom Muller

You are correct regarding CFs. However, the requirements we have discussed re telesupervision of SLP and AuD students prior to graduation.

Question 16: Submitted by Cheryl

When I inquired about the percentage of in person/telepractice I was informed that Simucase was still an option. Does this mean the Simucase is preferred over telepractice?

Amanda Gallagher, ASHA

Clinical simulation is considered separately from telepractice.

Question 17: Submitted by Guest

What happens if a student cannot meet the current requirements prior to graduation? Will they be eligible for certification?

Todd Philbrick, ASHA

Per the CAA standards the students should be meeting the certification requirements prior to graduating.

Question 18: Submitted by Guest

Does the CFCC think that telepractice isn’t a vital means of service delivery in the current clinical landscape?

Nancy McMahon

Service delivery through telepractice is a critical element of client patient care now and in the future. This is why students should be well trained to provide services both in person and telepractice modalities.

Question 19: Submitted by Monica G.

For graduate students, is the term “telesupervision” only meaning supervising a student that is treating via telehealth? Below you indicated that a supervisor may not supervise a student via a “tele” format (I.e., via zoom), is that correct?

Tom Muller

Telesupervision refers to a situation in which the clinical educator is remote from the student. This is allowable in the special circumstance in which the client/patient, the student and the clinical educator are all three in different places. However, it is not allowable (before graduation) if the client/patient and student are on-site together and the clinical educator is remote.

Question 20: Submitted by Michelle Mentis

Going back to the topic of our May 2023 grads, please consider the challenges that programs are currently facing in planning and ensuring that students meets standards and requirements, evidence for the effectiveness of teletherapy, and the importance of ensuring that our students are well prepared for the healthcare landscape of the future.

Amanda Gallagher, ASHA

Thank you for this feedback. The CFCC will take this into consideration during the decision making process.

Question 21: Submitted by Cheryl

I understand that clinical simulation is separate. My question is when I was informed that the students could acquire hours through Simucase it seemed preferred to any 'extra' telepractice hourse. e.g. 20 hours 'knee to knee' 30 hours telepractice, with the 50% criteria then only 20 hours of telepractice would be valid. BUT if the student did Simucase all those hours would be valid. I feel that telepractice is more of a real experience than Simucase.

Nancy McMahon

Thank you for your perspective.

Question 22: Submitted by Jen

For the the 50% benchmark, is simulation included in the total hours? For example, in the given timeframe, if a student obtains 100 hours in telehealth, 100 hours in person and 50 hours in ACE/simulation activities, will they have met the 50% benchmark?

Amy Thorpe Wiley

You've met the 50% benchmark, however, you have not met the 400 total for graduation or 250 hour direct client patient care. You're off to a great start

Question 23: Submitted by Cheryl

I am wondering if that is the case that Simucase hours would be accepted before telepractice. How many hours would a student earn in the following scenario?

  • 20 hours 'knee to knee'
  • 30 hours telepractice
  • 20 hours Simucase

Todd Philbrick, ASHA

Simucase prior to COVID and for the last 2 years has been capped at 75 hours. So all simucase counts.

Amanda Gallagher, ASHA

If the hours we are talking about were earned during 2022, then 20 hours of telepractice and 20 hours of 'knee to knee' toward the practicum. If they were earned in 2020 and 2021, they would get credit for all of the hours because the accommodations allowed up to 100% of the practicum to be earned via telepractice.

ASHA Moderator

I am afraid we are out of time. Perhaps the panelists have something they would like to say in closing?

Amy Thorpe Wiley

We continue to evaluate the tele practice issue and continue to make to a top priority. Thank you for your participation this evening!

Amanda Gallagher, ASHA

Thank you for your thoughts, concerns and feedback. We appreciate you participating in this conversation.

Todd Philbrick, ASHA

Thank you for participating tonight and we appreciate your questions and feedback. They will be helpful in charting a course for 2023 and beyond,

Tom Muller

Thanks everyone! I hope this was helpful and we really appreciate your input.

Nancy McMahon

Thank you for attending. Have a good evening.

ASHA Moderator

Thank you all so much for your great questions and comments and thank you, panelists, for your time and great information! This chat will be available for viewing on this page immediately after it has ended.

Thank you again and goodnight everyone!

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