Letter: HIPAA preempts state laws

HIPAA preempts any state law that restricts a patient’s access to their records. It requires that you release a copy of the patient’s records to him/her, and all states require disclosure of records to third parties on patient request. (Records after death Sept/Oct issue) When the patient dies, HIPAA requires that only their personal representative […]

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  • Should psychologists abide by the Goldwater Rule?

    I started my work on this article with a Google search using “Donald Trump’s mental health.” There were about 8.8 million results, ranging from articles in academic journals such as the New England Journal of Medicine to magazine commentaries, including one in the Marie Clair UK edition. Everybody had an opinion about the president’s mental […]

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  • VA’s telehealth rule raises licensing concerns

    A sweeping move by the Veterans Administration to permit staff psychologists to conduct telemental health sessions with veterans across state lines is generating mixed reactions and perplexing questions. The VA finalized the rule effective June 11 to permit VA psychologists and other health professionals to use technology, such as video conferencing, to perform or facilitate […]

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  • Therapists Vulnerable to Sexual Misconduct Accusations

    Between October and November 2017, former film producer and entertainment biz executive, Harvey Weinstein achieved infamy as the poster child for sexual misconduct after more than 80 sexual misconduct allegations covering a 30-year period surfaced in a mere 30-odd days. In the immediate aftermath of the Weinstein allegations, there was some initial victim-blaming backlash toward […]

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  • Ethics for Psychologists: How to Fine Tune Consultations

    When confronted with an ethical dilemma, most of us have been encouraged to consult a colleague. In some states, peer consultation is considered part of a standard of care. Graduate school is likely when most of us first encountered this recommendation. Beyond the direction to “consult,” however, many of us were probably not provided information […]

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  • Risk Management: Psychologists Producing Quality, Well-Documented Patient Care

    The goal of risk management is to reduce the likelihood of discipline by a malpractice court, licensing board, ethics committee or another oversight body. Risk management is an important topic, but it could be viewed as a subset of the larger issue of how to deliver high quality professional services. The best risk management strategy […]

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  • Ethics for psychologists: Supervising in the age of #MeToo, trigger warning and safe spaces

    The popular press in the United States has recently been replete with allegations of misconduct by people, primarily men, in positions of power. Those contending harassment, exploitation or sexual assault have called out giants in journalism, theater, cinema, music, sports and politics. The allegations have resulted in public scorn, resignations, firings and civil or criminal […]

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  • How to handle conflicts of ethics and the law

    One of the issues that has always felt gray to many psychologists is when the APA (2010) Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct (Ethics Code) conflicts with the law. Should a psychologist follow the legal code or the Ethics Code? The Ethics Code specifically states in section 1.02, “If psychologists’ ethical responsibilities conflict […]

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  • Ethics of Technology and Clinician Responsibility

    Rapid advances in technology are everywhere, including in the field of clinical assessment. These changes have prompted many clinicians to ask the question, “Will technology soon take the place of the clinician in assessment?” Although recent technological advances now improve adherence to standard administration procedures, accuracy in scoring and allow clinicians to conduct near-seamless digital […]

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  • Gun Violence: A Professional Psychology Proposal

    Gun violence continues to be a serious and growing problem. At least monthly, another mass shooting becomes the news of the day. Politically, there appears to be no sincere attempt to address gun violence by the Republican Party that controls all levels of the federal government. I’m sure some will bristle at singling out Republicans. […]

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