El Paso and Las Cruces area election stories and interviews.
By: Gina BenitezEL PASO, Texas -- They serve those who are serving or once served our nation.
"Maybe 40-50 percent of my clientele is TRICARE," said Jessica Acer, a licensed professional counselor.Acker feels our military members deserve the very best care."I was a military spouse for 15 years and I worked for the military for five years and then I've worked with the military for 10 of over 20 years now," Acker said.So in late 2011, when an interim final rule came down from the Department of Defense that said LPC's needed an extra certification to see TRICARE patients, she jumped right on it."I've had a few interns myself some from CACREP universities and some that weren't, and it is my opinion that those from a CACREP university typically had a higher skill level," Acker said.Though Acker started the certification process as soon as she found out, other LPC's didn't do the same and were scrambling to get CACREP certified by the start of 2015.But the final rule came out just two weeks ago, more than 2 1/2 years after the interim rule was put out.In it, it says LPC's can continue to see TRICARE patients without being CACREP certified, as long as a physician supervises."I think the type of coordination that you would need to coordinate with 40-50 doctors a week, or monthly, however you would do that would be difficult," Acker said.Though Acker's recently acquired certification isn't required by TRICARE like she, and many others once thought it would be, she doesn't regret pushing herself to get it."Having that additional certification shows that you are skilled at a higher level," Acker said.
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