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Monthly Briefing September 2023

A series of recent events warrant a reminder of the obligations CHTs face as they relate to their Code of Conduct attestation. The Code of Conduct establishes a clear outline of what represents required personal behaviors relating to ethics, integrity, and honesty. It also addresses professional traits with respect to compliance with prevailing codes, standards, authoritative guidelines, and laws.

Several examples of behavior appearing to conflict with the CHT Code of Conduct have been brought to the Board’s attention. They include CHTs seemingly involved beyond their scope of practice, such as operating a hyperbaric chamber independent of a physician’s order and prescribed dosing protocol (essentially practicing medicine without requisite licensure). Another is a CHT operating a chamber under an ordered protocol but with no designated medical provider available during treatment to intervene should an adverse event occur. This event involved the CHT in question calling the Board to seek guidance for the predicament he found himself in. One more is a CHT operating a hyperbaric chamber not designed, or manufactured, or interconnected in accordance with prevailing codes and standards. Teaching and “certifying” individuals to operate non-approved chambers also fails the Code of Conduct attestation. A CHT publicly and purposely misstating facts regarding prevailing codes and standards for apparent monetary gain has also been identified.   

Failure to comply with the Code of Conduct risks initiation of disciplinary proceedings. Where behavioral and/or compliance shortcomings are established, the Board’s action may range from formal reprimand to revocation of CHT status.

Dick Clarke, President

National Board of Diving & Hyperbaric Medical Technology

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Updated April 20, 2023