HRSA Chief Mary Wakefield:
Keynote Speaker at 2010 APA Education Advocacy Breakfast Meeting
Psychologists nationwide have a chance to hear the latest on plans for improving health care services in underserved communities from a top federal official at the upcoming Education Advocacy Breakfast Meeting. The meeting—occurring this August in San Diego as part of the 2010 APA Annual Convention—will feature keynote speaker Mary Wakefield, PhD, RN.
Dr. Wakefield is the Administrator for the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), which oversees six bureaus and 13 offices within HRSA to fill health care gaps for those living outside the economic and medical mainstream. The agency uses its $7 billion annual budget (FY 2010) to expand access to quality health care, in partnership with health care providers and health professions training programs.
"Dr. Wakefield's acceptance of this invitation demonstrates her commitment to psychology as part of the health professions workforce. We are excited about this opportunity," said Dr. Cynthia Belar, Executive Director for the APA Education Directorate.
Meeting attendees to hear vital information
At the meeting, Dr. Wakefield will speak directly to leaders from the psychology education and training community, division and state associations, and grassroots coordinators and supporters about federal legislative initiatives and issues of interest to the field. In fact, she will give APA members exclusive information on:
Her vision for HRSA, including plans to reorganize the agency to better meet national needs;
How the HRSA reorganization aims to shrink health care gaps for underserved communities;
The role of psychologists in the HRSA reorganization; and
Efforts to promote integrated mental and behavioral health care through HRSA programs, such as the Graduate Psychology Education (GPE) Program and Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs)
A leader in rural health care
President Obama hand picked Dr. Wakefield to serve as director of the HRSA. The presidential appointment was no surprise: Dr. Wakefield is one of the nation’s top rural health care professionals. Dr. Wakefield also has significant expertise in care quality and patient safety, Medicare payment policy, workforce issues, and public policy.
As HRSA Administrator, Dr. Wakefield is using her expertise as a nurse and rural health care advocate to increase access to affordable, high-quality health care— including the expansion of the FQHC program—for uninsured and underserved Americans.