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65-6319. Diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders by certain licensed social workers authorized. The following licensed social workers may diagnose and treat mental disorders specified in the edition of the diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders of the American psychiatric association designated by the board by rules and regulations: (a) A licensed specialist clinical social worker, and (b) a licensed master social worker who engages in the practice of social work only under the direction of a licensed specialist clinical social worker, a licensed psychologist, a person licensed to practice medicine and surgery or a person licensed to provide mental health services as an independent practitioner and whose licensure allows for the diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders. When a client has symptoms of a mental disorder, a licensed master social worker shall consult with the client's primary care physician or psychiatrist to determine if there may be a medical condition or medication that may be causing or contributing to the client's symptoms of a mental disorder. A client may request in writing that such consultation be waived and such request shall be made a part of the client's record. A licensed master social worker may continue to evaluate and treat the client until such time that the medical consultation is obtained or waived.

History: L. 1994, ch. 164, § 1; L. 1997, ch. 142, § 7; L. 1999, ch. 117, § 16; July 1, 2000.


1. Licensed specialist clinical social workers are qualified to diagnose and treat mental disorder; Willis, 256 K. 837, clarified. Welch v. State, 270 K. 229, 13 P.3d 882 (2000).

2. The testimony of a social worker regarding the cause of a suicide is not barred. Burnette v. Eubanks, 52 K.A.2d 751, 764, 379 P.3d 372 (2016).

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