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APA Council of Representatives Meeting Summary
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February 2013

At its February meeting, the APA Council of Representatives reviewed a number of programs and initiatives designed to position the association and psychology for changes in the discipline, the marketplace and the post-Sandy Hook legislative environment.

Included in a number of presentations to the council was a report by CEO Norman Anderson, PhD, on the association’s new Center for Psychology and Health. The center, directed by Anderson, will coordinate central office activities intended to ensure psychology’s position in the emerging team-focused health-care marketplace. Anderson also briefed the council on APA activities in response to the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy. APA mobilized both its staff and member resources after the Sandy Hook shooting to immediately bring psychological expertise to news coverage and White House and Congressional proposals. Two APA member groups will be working on reports and or literature reviews on the issue of gun violence prediction and prevention; a third will focus on the role of media (most notably violent video games and other interactive media) in violence and aggression.

APA Executive Director for Education Cynthia Belar, PhD, updated the council on the first phase of the internship stimulus program funded by the association last year to help programs working toward APA accreditation. During the first phase of the program, 82 applicants sought funding and $593,000 was distributed to 32 programs.  The goal of the program is to increase the number of accredited internships and support the overall quality of graduate training. The council was also briefed on new accreditation status categories designed for internship and postdoctoral programs in the accreditation process: "eligibility status” and "accredited on contingency.”  
In a separate presentation, Steven D. Hollon, PhD, chair of the APA Clinical Practice Guidelines Advisory Steering Committee, reviewed the association’s new process for creating such guidelines. The process is based on three pillars:  transparency, empirical evidence, and multidisciplinary and balanced panels writing recommendations. The steering committee will oversee the guidelines creation process.  
Expert panels do the actual crafting of guidelines and have been appointed in the areas of depression, obesity and post-traumatic stress disorder.
In her role as the executive director of the American Psychological Association Practice Organization, Katherine Nordal, PhD, reported on APAPO’s myriad of activities to support the viability of professional practice and the public’s access to high quality psychological services.  
As a 501c6 organization, the APAPO has as its primary mission to serve the interests and needs of practicing psychologists and can undertake activities the APA, a 501c3 organization, cannot, including efforts to improve insurance and managed care company practices and reimbursement policies, unrestricted lobbying on behalf of its members, and working with political action committees to facilitate political giving. Both APA and APAPO are working to ensure an appropriate role for psychologists as health-care reform is implemented.  In addition, APAPO has been engaged in helping members adjust to changes in psychotherapy billing codes for 2013. See for a comparison between the 2012 and 2013 codes.

The APAPO is almost entirely funded by those APA members who are licensed health-care providers, and, pay the practice assessment for membership in the APAPO in addition to their APA membership.

In other action, the council:

Approved the association’s 2013 budget with a projected very small deficit. The 2013 operating revenue is forecast to be $108,156,000 with expected expenses of $108,299,000. The council amended the 2013 budget to increase spending by approximately $76,000 to provide $500 in additional funding for members of council whose travel expenses are not otherwise paid by APA. All council members will now be eligible for reimbursement for two nights’ lodging plus $500 to help offset their expenses for attending the July 31 and August 2 Council meeting.   

Approved the Guidelines for Prevention in Psychology as APA policy.  The guidelines will be submitted for consideration for publication in the American Psychologist and will be posted on the APA website.  Once posted, notifications will be issued to CoR members, APA governance groups, staff liaisons, Divisions and SPTAs, among others.   In addition, guidelines are often featured in Practice Update and Good Practice publications.  

Approved continued funding for the APA/ASPPB/APAIT Joint Task Force for the Development of Telepsychology.

Approved APA’s endorsement of the document Structure and Function of an Interdisciplinary Team for Persons with Acquired Brain Injury.  The document was authored by a joint committee on interprofessional relations drawn from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and APA Division 40 (Clinical Neuropsychology).  A draft of the document can be access via the earlier call for comments at:

Approved APA endorsement of the report Core Competencies for Interprofessional Collaborative Practice. This report was written by the Interprofessional Education Collaborative (IPEC) consisting of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine, the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, the American Dental Education Association, the Association of American Medical Colleges, and the Association of Schools of Public Health.  
IPEC was created by the Federation of Association of Schools of the Health Professions, of which APA is now a liaison member.  The report can be accessed through the earlier call for comment at:

Approved inviting each of the seven regional psychological associations to send an observer to future Council meetings.    
Funding for travel to council meetings would be the responsibility of the regional associations.
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