In The News

New Feature! - Advocacy Spotlight

CPA e-news will start offering an “Advocacy Spotlight” that will keep you informed about current advocacy priorities in the field of psychology. Psychology can play a key role in public policy by providing essential knowledge that establishes priorities, improving informed decision-making, and resolving policy differences. Getting involved in advocacy can help advance the field of psychology, raise awareness of its contribution and garner funding for essential programs.

Thank you to all of the CPA members who participated in commenting on the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed changes on September 13th. You took a stand to tell the government and insurance companies that psychology and the communities we serve matter! This was a successful effort of unified voices across the discipline of psychology to submit a record-breaking 9,814 comments. There was a consensus in the field to oppose a reduction in reimbursement rates and support of continuing reimbursement for telehealth and audio-only services at the same rates that have been in effect during COVID-19. If reimbursement is decreased for these services, it will discourage providers from offering these services, jeopardizing access to care for many. Now that the comment period has officially closed, CMS will review comments and adjust its proposal in response. It will then publish a final rule, likely in the late fall or early winter. Advocates will focus on gaining support from Congress on these and other Medicare policy changes needed to help improve access to psychologists’ services. Thank you Colorado members for taking a stand to tell the government and insurance companies that psychology matters and all the communities we serve matter! Stay tuned for the government response.

 

New Proposed APA Committee on Eating Disorders

A steering committee has initiated APA's procedure for establishing a new division focused on eating disorders and related concerns. The proposed division is named the Society of Eating Disorders and Body Image, and the next step is to demonstrate interest within the membership of APA. There is currently a petition available online, with a description of the proposed committee and statement of need. Anyone can access the petition by going to this link (no login needed): https://www.apa.org/about/division/eating-disorders-body-image-petition. To sign the petition, use the link on the petition itself, or log in to your MyAPA account and visit https://www.apa.org/about/division/secure/eating-disorder-body-image. As noted on the petition page itself, by signing you are also agreeing to be a member and pay dues (which the steering committee set to be $10 a year) should the division be formally supported and approved.

 

Racial Disparities in Maternal Mental Health: Scholarship Opportunity

The gap in services for professionals and communities of color around perinatal mental health issues has only grown during COVID-19. Postpartum Support International (PSI) https://www.postpartum.net/ is the world’s leading non-profit organization dedicated to helping those suffering from perinatal mood disorders. They have worked for years towards increasing diversity within the organization and outreaching underserved communities. The Perinatal Mental Health Alliance for People of Color (PMHA-POC) was created within PSI to bridge the gap in services. Currently PMHA-POC is excited to announce that they are offering scholarships for people of color to attend mental health trainings through PSI. The organization believes that increasing visibility and representation from within will help to reach diverse and underserved communities more effectively. Members of CPA are encouraged to apply. Click on this link to find out more about scholarship opportunities: https://pmhapoc.org/scholarships/. Michelle Dawson, Psy.D has completed PSI’s certificate in maternal mental health and would be happy to help connect you to the organization and answer any questions about her experience with training. She can be reached at [email protected].

 

 

Senator Wyden Request for Behavioral Health Solutions

Congressional Request for Information: Bipartisan Mental Health Legislation

Congress is looking for ways to address the growing mental health crisis that existed before COVID-19 and has been exacerbated by the pandemic. Last week, Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Sen. Mike Crapo (R-ID), Chair and Ranking Member of the Senate Finance Committee sent out this request for information. These senators are particularly interested in evidence-based solutions and ideas to enhance behavioral health care in the following areas: a) strengthening the workforce; b) increasing integration, coordination, and access to care; c) ensuring parity between behavioral and physical health care; d) furthering the use of telehealth; and e) improving access to behavioral health care for children and young people. They are also seeking input on improving reimbursement mechanisms and financing behavioral health care incentives.

 The full letter is here. Responses are due by November 1, 2021 and can be sent to [email protected]

 

COPAGS Now Recruiting for Leaders

The Colorado Psychological Association of Graduate Students (COPAGS) is recruiting for new leadership positions!
COPAGS is the graduate student arm of the Colorado Psychological Association and aims to represent the needs of psychology graduate students and the communities they serve across the state of Colorado. Participating in COPAGS is a great way to learn leadership skills and boost your CV while building your professional network.
 
COPAGS is accepting nominations for these positions for the October 2021 - July 2022 term: Chair-Elect, Programing Chair, Diversity Chair, and Advocacy Chair (descriptions below).

Interested individuals should send a CV and paragraph of interest by 9am MT on Friday, October 15th to COPAGS Co-Chairs Princi Kovacs & Anne Fritzson at [email protected].


Position Descriptions:

Chair-Elect

  • One term as Chair-elect and then serves as Chair the year following.
  • The Chair leads COPAGS and is the graduate student counterpart to the CPA Board President position. 

Programming Chair

  • Develops and implements programming across the state of Colorado that appeals and benefits graduate students of psychology.
  • Examples of previous events include educational programming, networking events, fostering communication amongst graduate students with similar professional interests. 

Diversity Chair

  • Acts to ensure that COPAGS is aware of and has a consistent focus on issues of diversity and cultural competence.
  • Represents and advocates for the needs of diverse individuals in graduate psychology training as well as communities served by graduate students. 

Advocacy Chair

  • Responsible for leadership projects geared towards advocating for Colorado graduate students as well as disenfranchised groups.
  • Activities of prior advocacy chairs have included: facilitating an event about refugee mental health, social media town hall to connect graduate students with a senator supporting mental health reform and connecting COPAGS members with CPA Psychologists to increase COPAGS’ presence within CPA.
 
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