Vermont welcomes out-of-state healthcare professionals
MONTPELIER — The state has eased the way for healthcare professionals who are licensed in other states to join or return the Vermont workforce to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, Secretary of State Jim Condos has announced.
Legislation signed by Gov. Phil Scott on Monday allows healthcare and mental health professionals who hold licenses in other states to practice in Vermont without having to go through the usual requirements to obtain a Vermont license.
The same applies to those who retired from practice in Vermont within the last three years and who wish to reenter the workforce.
"We are working judiciously to ensure that thousands of skilled professionals in crucial fields can practice quickly and safely," Condos said in a statement.
Additionally, the Office of Professional Regulation (OPR) is authorized to issue temporary licenses free of charge to new graduates who are unable to take board exams due to the COVID-19 crisis and to Vermonters who retired between three and 10 years ago.
"This new law gives our office the flexibility it needs to respond to the current health crisis in Vermont, while maintaining our mission of protecting the public," said OPR Director Lauren Hibbert. "Most importantly, qualified professionals who wish to join or return to the workforce during this critical time can now do so more quickly."
The law also expands access to telehealth across state lines, in an effort to increase the accessibility and availability of a range of healthcare services for Vermonters.
In addition to the changes above, the law allows pharmacists to extend previously prescribed maintenance prescriptions if it is not possible to get a new prescription from the prescriber. Pharmacists are also authorized to provide a therapeutic substitution of a medication or insulin if the originally prescribed drugs or insulin are unavailable. In both instances, pharmacists must notify the original prescriber of the extension or substitution.
To read more about OPR's policy changes and response to COVID-19 please visit: https://sos.vermont.gov/opr/about-opr/covid-19-response/.
Out-of-state or retired healthcare or mental health professionals, or recent graduates in these fields, who are interested in practicing in Vermont should contact OPR at https://sos.vermont.gov/opr/about-opr/contact-us/
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