Laws in Effect July 1, 2013

Hello Medical Assistants, Goodbye Health Care Assistants
Washington Law, Chapter 18.360 RCW

In March 2012 Engrossed Substitute Senate Bill 6237 was passed, creating the new medical assistant (MA) profession and phasing out the health care assistant profession.

Do credentialed health care assistants need a new medical assistant credential? Not if their health care assistant credential is active on the effective date (July 1, 2013) of the new medical assistant law. Those who hold an active, current health care assistant credential will become medical assistants.

If an employee is called a “medical assistant” but does not have a credential from the Department of Health (DOH), will he or she automatically become a medical assistant? No. If your employee does not have an active health care assistant credential before July 1, 2013, but is completing duties outlined in RCW 18.360.050, the employee must meet the minimum requirements currently being set in the rule to apply for and receive a medical assistant credential.

Please check out our summary of the medical assistant rules and regulations at If you have questions, please call Risk Management at (206) 343-7300.

Washington State Department of Health Increases Fee for Copying Records
WAC 246-08-400

Effective July 1, 2013, through June 30, 2015, the maximum allowable charge for copying medical records is:  

  • $1.09 per page for the first 30 pages  •  $0.82 per page thereafter
  • A $24 clerical searching and handling fee may be charged under state law, but federal law prohibits charging this fee to the patient or to someone authorized to make health care decisions on behalf of the patient.

The amount you charge for reproducing a record must be limited to your actual cost and may not exceed the maximum allowable charges outlined above. Additionally, Washington State requires that you collect sales tax when charging for medical record copies. You may determine the applicable tax rate for your location using this link to the Washington State Department of Revenue (DOR) Web site: