The National Psychologist publishes history of past decade on its 10-year anniversary

By The National Psychologist Editor
July 1, 2001



The July/August 2001, 10-year anniversary issue of The National Psychologist features a 16-page retrospective of events covered in all 57 issues, 1,712 pages of the newspaper since its inception.

The National Psychologist is an independent newspaper intended for psychologist practitioners.

The article tracing the 10-year history was written by Garland Y. DeNelsky, Ph.D., a psychologist who recently retired after a 30-year career at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation. He was twice chair of APA’s Policy and Planning Board, co-chair of its Finance Committee and served nine years on the Council of Representatives.

Dr. DeNelsky found, not surprisingly, that the most prominently covered event of the decade was managed care. Ten years ago, it meant little to psychologists, something that was to change dramatically, DeNelsky writes, mentioning among the prominent players, Nick Cummings, Ph.D., Bryant Welch, Ph.D., Karen Shore, Ph.D., Russ Newman, Ph.D. and Ted Strickland, Ph.D.

Next in dominating coverage was the issue of prescription privileges, highlighted by psychiatry’s inflexible opposition, the graduation of 10 psychologists trained in psychopharmacology by the Department of Defense, and the training of psychologists in various other venues. By all counts, the leader of the effort to attain prescribing privileges was Pat DeLeon, Ph.D., J.D., who would, late in the decade, became APA president. Several states had unsuccessfully tried to gain prescription rights but only Guam, a U.S. territory, succeeded.

New issues were surfacing on the licensing of masters level persons in psychology, an issue that has been lingering for nearly 50 years without resolution. Hospital privileges for psychologists, a major concern when the decade began, had virtually disappeared as an impact issue when the decade ended as outpatient replaced inpatient services. The turf war between psychology and psychiatry continued unabated except for a brief respite when Psychiatrist Harold Eist and Psychologist Dorothy Cantor were presidents of their respective national associations.They found common cause, sharing equal enmity toward managed care. APA experienced a building boom during the decade with two major buildings constructed near Washington’s Union Station yielding a considerable financial intake. But the association was far less successful in dealing with the ever-present managed care morass.

On the political scene, three psychologists won election to Congress, Rep. Strickland of Ohio, Rep. Brian Baird of Tacoma, WA, and Rep. Tom Osborne of Nebraska. Osborne’s career heretofore was as football coach of the perennially successful University of Nebraska Cornhuskers.

The National Psychologist celebrated the turn of the century by highlighting notable psychologists of the previous 50 years, among them Drs. Nicholas Cummings, Albert Ellis, Paul Meehl, George Albee, Milton Erickson, Arnold Lazarus, Jack Wiggins, Pat DeLeon, B.F. Skinner, Erik Erickson, Fritz Perls and Rollo May.

The National Psychologist was founded by Henry Saeman, executive director of the Ohio Psychological Assn. from 1973-1991. He continues as the publication’s editor.

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