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Reduced Antipsychotics Recommended for Dementia

The American Psychiatric Association released revised guidelines in May for the limited “judicious use” of antipsychotic drugs to treat agitation or psychosis in patients with dementia. A statement announcing the new recommendations pointed out that they are evidence-based and should be just one part of a comprehensive treatment plan. “…Clinical trials show little benefit from […]

July 27, 2016

Federal Court Upholds New York SAFE Act

New York’s three-year-old gun-control SAFE Act, which requires psychologists and other mental health workers to report clients they feel are a danger to themselves or others, has been ruled constitutional by the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan. The court found the SAFE Act as well as a similar law enacted in Connecticut […]

January 18, 2016

The making of a black psychologist: A personal perspective

As I look back on my life, growing up as a little black boy in the 1950s, in the sweltering heat of the segregated state of Alabama, many things are vivid in my memory. Because of all the injustices I’ve experienced, my psyche has been negatively affected. Many black people who have gone through similar […]

September 15, 2013

Colleague assistance programs growing

Since 1980 the American Psychological Association (APA) has acknowledged the existence of distressed and impaired psychologists and the need to provide adequate and appropriate assistance. Today assistance is active in many states through colleagues assistance programs (CAPs) of State, Provincial and Territorial Psychological Associations (SPTAs, APA Division 31).

September 15, 2013

From the Latest Issue...

Parity Task Force: ‘There is Much More Work to be Done’

Parity task force reports ‘There is much more work to be done’A report by a presidential task force made several recommendations to help enforce the nation’s parity laws, but admits there is much more work to be done to insure those suffering from mental illnesses and addiction do not continue to face discrimination in their health care.

“These disorders,” the report says, “affect society in ways that go beyond the direct cost …

January 24, 2017 | Read the story »

Ethics for Psychologists: Pre-Employment Evaluations for Police and Public Safety

Pre-employment evaluations for police and public safetyThe delivery and conduct of Pre-employment Psychological Evaluations (PPE’s) of police and public safety officers are crucial to candidates and the agencies to ensure that prospective employees are suitable for the work.

Psychologists overseeing and conducting these assessments must follow the standards and consensus of professional practice and, critically, must be consistent in the methodologies and judgments used in their assessments.

In 2014, the International Association of …

January 24, 2017 | Read the story »

What is a Disability, Anyway?

Service Dog with Disabled OwnerMental health professionals are often asked to certify patients are “disabled” or have a “disability related need” for a service dog or therapy animal. Responding requires care, because “disability” and “disabled” are legal, not medical concepts.

A certificate or confirmation that a patient is disabled made without considering the legal context may lead to involvement in a legal dispute that has nothing to do with ordinary medical diagnosis …

January 24, 2017 | Read the story »

Animal-Assisted Psychotherapy

Animal Assisted PsychotherapyAnimal Assisted Psychotherapy (AAP) is a unique and expanding field in which mental health professionals incorporate trained therapy animals into counseling sessions.

AAP differs from the more commonly understood animal assisted therapy (AAT) in which volunteer handlers and animals visit facilities such as schools, hospitals or nursing homes. AAT programs are powerful for both the participants and the volunteers, but AAP’s focus on mental health, the depth and complexities of …

January 23, 2017 | Read the story »

Psychologists Can Submit Quality Measures in 2017

Psychologists can submit quality measures in 2017Because psychologists are exempt for the next two years from the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) for Medicare providers that rolled out in January, some are breathing sighs of relief with no worries of incurring financial penalties for not screening for conditions patients do not mention. They argue that the exemption will save time and reduce paperwork and overall hassles.

But some experts believe that refraining …

January 23, 2017 | Read the story »

The Upside of RxP for Psychology – A Reply

The Upside of RxP for Psychology – A ReplyIn the last edition of The National Psychologist, David S. Doane, Ph.D., expressed his opinion that prescription privileges (RxP) would undermine the profession of psychology. We, the undersigned, all of whom participate on the statewide Prescription Privileges Committee of the Florida Psychological Association (FPA), would like to reply with our very different perspective.

Doane begins by saying, “Prescriptive authority … will be harmful for …

January 22, 2017 | Read the story »