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Public Health in the 21st Century

Multi disciplinary Conference Will Demonstrate the Importance of Behavioral & Social Sciences in Public Health Issues

The behavioral and social sciences have been increasingly integrated into public health and biomedical research, prevention, and treatment programs. In that light, leading researchers in those fields from all over the country will be in Atlanta, Georgia for the conference, "Public Health in the 21st Century: Behavioral & Social Science Contributions." The conference will be at the Atlanta Marriott Marquis Hotel starting on Thursday, May 7 and closing on Saturday, May 9.

This Multi disciplinary conference is being organized by the American Psychological Association (APA) and funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, the National Institute of Mental Health, the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, US Department of Justice, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism and the Office of Behavioral and Social Science Research at NIH.

The 13 collaborating organizations are:

American Academy of Nursing
American Anthropological Association
American Association of Geographers
American College of Epidemiology
American Evaluation Association
American Psychological Society
American Public Health Association
American Sociological Association
Consortium of Social Science Associations
Federation of Behavioral, Psychological, and Cognitive Sciences
Society of Behavioral Medicine
Society for Psychological Study of Social Issues
Society for Public Health Education


Registration forms for the conference with detailed information will be mailed out by mid January, 1998. The cost of the conference will be $90.00 up until April 1, 1998. After April 1, the cost will be $125.00. Space is limited and registration will be processed on a first come, first serve basis. The registration forms need to be sent back to the American Psychological Association. Hotel registration should be done directly through the Atlanta Marriott Marquis Hotel, which is offering single or double rooms at the federal rate of $96.00.


Announcing the 1998 Annual Prize: $250 Psychotherapy with Women Award

Awarded by Division 35 under the Sponsorship of Drs. Annette Brodsky and Rachel Hare-Mustin, authors, Women and Psychotherapy: An Assessment of Research and Practice

Content: Manuscripts on the broad topic of psychotherapy with women are eligible. Research (quantitative and qualitative), clinical applications, clinical case studies, and theoretical review articles are welcome.

Eligibility: Jointly authored articles are eligible. Entries should be of approximately journal length and written in APA style. Papers which have been submitted for publication or presented at professional meetings are eligible, along with papers which have been accepted for publication. In the case of the latter, the papers may not be published prior to the June 1 submission deadline.

Submission: Send four copies of the paper and a self-addressed stamped postcard by June 1, 1998 to Maryka Biaggio, School of Professional Psychology, Pacific University, 2004 Pacific Avenue, Forest Grove, OR 97116. E-mail address: A cover sheet with the author's name, address, and telephone number should accompany the paper. The author's name should not appear on the paper itself.

Award: The winner will be announced at the American Psychological Association Convention in 1998. A $250 prize will be awarded for the selected paper.

Deadline for submissions: June 1, 1998


Federal Court Orders Lawsuit Against Managed Care Company to go Forward

The American Psychological Association (APA) and the New Jersey Psychological Association (NJPA) applaud the opinion by the United States District Court for New Jersey that will allow lawsuits against MCC Behavioral Health Care, Inc. (MCC) to proceed. The lawsuits challenges MCC's "without cause" termination of psychologists from its provider network. The allegations against MCC that will be litigated include violations of public policy, breaches of fundamental fairness, and tortious interference with economic advantage.

NJPA and the terminated psychologists sued MCC alleging that their rights and the rights of their patients, as protected by public policy, have been violated. In rejecting MCC's motion to dismiss, the judge drew a parallel between the managed care company's termination of providers and an employer who wrongfully fires an employee for conduct which is protected by public policy. "We believe it is inappropriate and a violation of public policy for managed care companies to discharge a professional who is providing services int he best interests of the patient simply because the services are not in the economic interests of the managed care company," says Russ Newman, Ph.D., J.D., executive director for professional practice for the American Psychological Association. "The federal court, by its decision, has agreed that the plaintiffs should have their day in court."

Significantly, the court explicitly noted that managed care companies "exist to provide health care tot he public." "Courts around the country are recognizing that managed care companies exert real control over the care patients receive and should be held accountable for it," continues Dr. Newman.

"What this case is really about is how managed care does business," says Lorryn Wahler, executive director of the New Jersey Psychological Association. "Managed care companies think they can hire and fire without regard to the therapeutic relationship established and the needs of the patients. The court here recognizes that terminating, for economic reasons, a provider who disagrees with the company about what care is necessary, is a disservice to both the public and the provider."

One other issue of note, in rejecting MCC's argument that the plaintiffs had no legal basis to complain, the court drew a similarity between the position of a managed care provider and that of a hospital provider with medical staff privileges and rights.

Practicing Psychology in Hospital and Other Health care Facilities
APA Practice Directorate

This book provides information and strategies to help promote more effective use of psychologists within hospitals and other health care settings. It is written for psychologists in independent practice, in public service, and in private sector employment who wish to gain recognized standing in hospitals in order to render professional services, whether as members of salaried staff or on a fee-for-service or contract basis. It identifies many of the obstacles, both historical and current, that have restricted psychologists;' access and full professional participation in inpatient settings and serve as a blueprint for overcoming these obstacles by providing eminently practice advice.

Contents: Psychologists' Roles and Responsibilities in Hospital Practice; Training Psychologists for Hospital Practice; The Hospital Organization: Psychological Services in a Hospital Contest; The Culture of the Hospital: Rules and procedures for Survival in a Hospital Practice; Strategies for Acquiring Medical Staff Membership; Strategies for Legislative and Regulatory Changes; The Evolution of Health Care Quality Monitoring; General Guidelines; Primary Components of Quality in the Deliver of Psychological Services in Hospitals and other Residential Treatment Settings; Fundamental Elements of a QA or a CQI Program; Glossary; References; Annotated Bibliography; Suggested Readings; Additional Resources; Appendixes.

To Order Call 1-800-374-2721 (In DC call 202-336-5510). FAX: 202-336-5502. Soft-cover. Approximately 164 pages. List: $29.95. Item # 431707A ISBN: 1-55798-492-3.

Jeff McKee
Saturday, April 25, 1998