Practitioner Health Program
The LBEDN contract with Healthcare Professionals’ Foundation of Louisiana (HPFL) has recently ended. The Board is now contracting with Ms. Kathie L. Pohlman, LCSW-BACS, MBA for professional monitoring services of the Board’s Practitioner Health Program.
As a licensure board, the LBEDN is purposed with the task of protecting the health, safety, and welfare of the public by providing for the licensure and regulation of qualified persons practicing the professions of dietetics and nutrition in the State of Louisiana. Historically, this meant that licensees who struggle with mental illness or addiction have been addressed via Consent Agreement and Orders.
What services will Ms. Pohlman provide?
It is the primary role of Ms. Pohlman to offer assistance to health care professionals who are in the program. Ms. Pohlman offers assistance to dietitians and nutritionists who may be suffering from illnesses that could potentially affect their practice. She monitors the professional and documents their progress in recovery. Professionals who undergo treatment and monitoring have a higher success rate of long term recovery.
Licensees may contact Ms. Pohlman directly, to gain help for substance abuse issues, depression, anxiety, mental illness, or addiction. If you suspect possible impairment of a dietitian and/or nutritionist, or if you have concerns for their safety or the safety of their patients, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. This program protects the identity of any person who makes a referral on behalf of a professional. Referrals can come from hospitals, colleagues, licensure boards, office staff, treatment centers, and family or friends.
What is an Impaired Professional?
A professional who is unable to practice with reasonable skill and safety to patients. Impairment could be due to a mental illness, substance abuse, or even a physical condition.
The Board and Ms. Pohlman highly value the confidentiality of its program participants. In addition, they maintain the confidentiality of those making reports concerning the actual or potential impairment of a health care professional.
Assistance offered by Ms. Pohlman is confidential. For example, a dietitian or nutritionist who is experiencing a problem with substance abuse for which they have not been adequately treated or monitored, can access these services without any obligation for the Program Manager to notify the Louisiana Board of Examiners in Dietetics and Nutrition (LBEDN). When the Practitioner Health Program is entered and completed, the licensee is not required to report this to the Board. Through the guidance of this program, licensees who find themselves with difficulties may avoid disciplinary actions by seeking help.
Concerns which can be directed to Ms. Pohlman
Concerns for which referrals are received include, but are not limited to the following:
· Being under the influence of mood altering substances while in the workplace.
· Excessive use of mood altering substances outside the workplace that may affect a professional's
ability to practice with skill and safety.
· Mood disorders, such as depression and anxiety or other psychiatric illnesses.
· Workplace disruptive behaviors such as verbal or physical abuse towards staff or patients.
· Boundary violations or sexual inappropriateness with patients.
If you or someone you know needs help, please contact our Program Manager directly at email@example.com for assistance. Early intervention could save someone's life.
Kathie Pohlmann, LCSW-BACS, MBA