Midwives

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Midwives Advisory Board

The Midwives Advisory Board met June 14 in Austin. The agenda is available online. The meeting was archived and is available on TDLR's YouTube channel.

Vacancies on Midwives Advisory Board

The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (Department) announces a vacancy on the Midwives Advisory Board (Board) established by Texas Occupations Code, Chapter 203. The pertinent rules may be found in 16 Texas Administrative Code Chapter 55. The purpose of the Midwives Advisory Board is to provide advice and recommendations to the department on technical matters relevant to the administration of this chapter. This announcement is for: (1) one public Member-Parent with at least one child born with the assistance of a midwife.

The Board consists of nine members appointed by the presiding officer of the commission, with the approval of the commission. The advisory board consists of the following members:

(1) five licensed midwives each of whom has at least three years' experience in the practice of midwifery;

(2) one physician who is certified by a national professional organization of physicians that certifies obstetricians and gynecologists;

(3) one physician who is certified by a national professional organization of physicians that certifies family practitioners or pediatricians; and

(4) two members who represent the public and who are not practicing or trained in a health care profession, one of whom is a parent with at least one child born with the assistance of a midwife.

Members serve staggered terms of six years. The terms of three members expire on January 31 of each odd-numbered year. This announcement is for the nine positions listed above. Interested persons should submit an application on the Department website at: https://www.tdlr.texas.gov/AdvisoryBoard/login.aspx. Applicants can also request an application from the Department by telephone (800) 803-9202, fax (512) 475-2874 or e-mail advisory.boards@tdlr.texas.gov.


Enforcement Penalties Updates

The Texas Commission of Licensing and Regulation (Commission) provides this public notice that at their regularly scheduled meeting held March 1, 2017, the Commission adopted the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation’s (Department) revised enforcement plan which was established in compliance with Texas Occupations Code, §51.302(c).

The enforcement plan gives all license holders notice of the specific ranges of penalties and license sanctions that apply to specific alleged violations of the statutes and rules enforced by the Department. The enforcement plan also presents the criteria that are considered by the Department’s Enforcement staff in determining the amount of a proposed administrative penalty or the magnitude of a proposed sanction. The enforcement plan is revised to include the penalty matrix for the Midwives program.

The Texas Legislature enacted Senate Bill 202 (S.B. 202), 84th Legislature, Regular Session (2015), which transferred regulatory authority of 13 programs, to include the Midwives program from the Texas Department of State Health Services to the Commission and Department. The Midwives penalty matrix provides for a single range of penalties to eliminate confusion and allow the industry to fully understand the penalties assessed. The matrix separates standard of care violations from the others to allow for an expert witness, when needed, to assist the Department in understanding the violation. This penalty matrix may differ slightly from others as the agency focuses on aligning strategic plan goals with agency resources.

The Midwives Advisory Board recommended approval of the revised matrix at their meeting held January 25, 2017. The penalty matrix was presented to the Commission on March 1, 2017, and was adopted as recommended. The Commission also requested the Midwives Advisory Board meet to discuss an issue raised during the adoption of the penalty matrix.

A copy of the revised enforcement plan is posted on the Department’s website and may be downloaded at www.tdlr.texas.gov/enforcement.htm.  You may also contact the Enforcement Division at (512) 539-5600 or by e-mail at enforcement@tdlr.texas.gov to obtain a copy of the revised plan.

This agency hereby certifies that this notice been reviewed by legal counsel and found to be a valid exercise of the agency's legal authority.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on March 27, 2017.


Advisory Board Meetings

The Midwives Advisory Board met March 27, 2017 in Austin. The agenda and the staff reports are available online. The meeting was archived and is available on TDLR's YouTube channel.

The Midwives Advisory Board met August 17, 2016 in Austin. The agenda and the Staff Reports are online. The meeting was archived and is available on TDLR's YouTube channel.

On October 14, 2015, the Texas Commission of Licensing and Regulation voted unanimously to appoint nine members to the Midwives Advisory Board:

  • Midwife: Brenda Buffington, Livingston, Texas. Term expires 1/31/2017.
  • Midwife: Janet Dirmeyer, Comfort, Texas. Term expires 1/31/2019.
  • Midwife: Laurie Fremgen, Austin, Texas. Term expires 1/31/2019.
  • Physician Family Practitioner/Pediatrician: Dr. Charleta Guillory, Houston, Texas. Term expires 1/31/2017.
  • Public Member - Parent: Linda Hart, Texas City, Texas. Term expires 1/31/2017.
  • Midwife: Victoria Meinhardt, Austin, Texas. Term expires 1/31/2021.
  • Midwife: Helen Nelson, Grand Prairie, Texas. Term expires 1/31/2019.
  • Physician OB/GYN: Dr. Michael Nix, Austin, Texas. Term expires 1/31/2021.
  • Public Member: Meredith A. Rentz Cook (Presiding Officer), Keller, TX. Term expires 1/31/2021.

 


Health Professions Transition FAQs

1. When did the transfer happen?
The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) assumed all activities relating to the Midwives program including licenses and renewals, customer service and enforcement on October 3, 2016.

2. Now that the transfer is complete, will I need to get a new license issued by TDLR?
No. The license you have now issued by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) remains valid until its expiration date. When you renew, you will receive a TDLR license.

3. Have the rules changed?
Yes, TDLR adopted rules for all of the transferred programs. Most of the newly adopted rules are very similar, but some changes have been made. The TDLR health profession rules became effective on October 1, 2016. View the rule changes and links to the TDLR rules

4. What is going to happen with open complaints and cases?
If you filed a complaint with DSHS or had a complaint filed against your license and it was not resolved by the transfer date, TDLR assumed responsibility for the case. You should have already received notification by mail that your complaint was transferred to TDLR.

5. How do I stay informed about changes impacting me?
You have several options to stay connected:

  • Email updates - Sign up for email updates to receive notices about rules, the law, fees, examination requirements, meetings and more. Email updates are the best way for you to stay informed.
  • Meetings - TDLR’s advisory board and Commission meetings are available to watch online live or later at your convenience.
  • Facebook and Twitter - TDLR has a Facebook page and Twitter account dedicated to TDLR Health Professions.

6. Why was my license expiration date extended? Will I have the same expiration date in the future?
To ease the transition, DSHS extended the expiration date by two months for licenses previously set to expire in August, September, and October 2016. For example, if your original expiration date was September 30, your new expiration date is November 30. If your license was extended, you will continue to renew your license in the new expiration month in the future.

7. Will I have to renew on a different schedule?
You will renew on the same schedule unless your license expired in August, September or October 2016. Licenses expiring in those months were extended for two months to ease the transition from DSHS to TDLR. If your license was extended, you will now renew in your new expiration month for future renewals. Your license expiration date will not return to your original expiration month.

8. Why were licensing programs transferred from DSHS to TDLR?
The transfer is the result of a change to Texas law. In 2015, the Texas Legislature passed Senate Bill 202, which transferred several licensing programs from the DSHS to TDLR.


About the Midwives Program

The Midwives program regulates licensed midwives and approved midwifery education courses. The Texas Midwifery Act defines midwifery as providing the necessary supervision, care, and advice to a woman during normal pregnancy, labor, and the postpartum period; conducting a normal delivery of a child; and providing normal newborn care from birth through the first six weeks of life.

To practice midwifery in Texas, an individual must hold a current license issued by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR). For information concerning Certified Nurse-Midwives (CNMs), who are not regulated by TDLR, contact either the Texas Board of Nursing or the American College of Nurse-Midwives. For information concerning licensing and regulation of birthing centers, contact the Department of State Health Services’ Facility Licensing Group.