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House of Representatives
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: February 4, 2019 09:05 AM
From: Representative Tim Briggs
To: All House members
Subject: Licensure of Art Therapists
If you decide to procure art therapy treatment in the Commonwealth, there is no way to know if the individual offering this treatment has the requisite training.

There are approximately 500 individuals in Pennsylvania offering some type of art therapy. Art therapy is a distinct mental health and behavioral science profession that combines knowledge and understanding of human development, psychological and counseling theories, and techniques with training in visual arts and the creative process. Art therapy is used in order to provide a unique approach for helping clients improve psychological health, cognitive abilities, and sensory-motor functions.

While art therapists share elements of their training and practice with other mental health specialties, it is the combining of psychological knowledge and counseling skills along with an understanding of art media, the effect of art stimulus, and the creative process that distinguishes art therapy from other mental health treatments. Currently, individuals can practice this therapy in Pennsylvania without obtaining state certification ensuring their proficiency.

My legislation would require the State Board of Social Workers, Marriage and Family Therapists and Professional Counselors to create a Licensed Art Therapist certification that ensures these individuals have the necessary training.

Several other states provide certification for art therapists and it is time for our state to step up and ensure that these individuals are properly trained.

Please support this effort to provide a standard licensing process for all art therapists in the Commonwealth.

Introduced as HB932