From the CEO

More than ever before, psychologists are welcomed — and much needed — members of interdisciplinary health-care teams. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act and to the public's greater recognition of the mind-body connection, there is an unprecedented appreciation of the role psychologists play in improving patient care.

To guide psychologists in working on health-care teams and in primary-care settings, APA's Office of Continuing Education in Psychology now offers more than 170 professional development resources, including video-on-demand online tutorials and interactive courses.

One of our most comprehensive products is the five-part Interactive Classroom Series "Heart and Mind: Contemporary Issues in Cardiac Psychology," a course launched in October. The course provides an overview of key research and practice in cardiac psychology, led by the nation's top cardiac medicine and psychology experts. Speakers discuss the "big three" psychosocial risk factors for heart disease — depression, social isolation and anger/hostility — and ways psychologists are helping people modify their diets and behavior to reduce their risk. One module, "Evidence-Based Psychosocial Interventions for Cardiac Patients," features physician Dean Ornish, MD, the first researcher to demonstrate that people can reverse heart disease with diet and lifestyle changes.

For psychologists who need to learn more about changes in diagnostic codes, in November APA debuted a three-hour Clinician's Corner video-on-demand program "Orientation to ICD Diagnosis." In this program, health psychologist and former APA President Carol D. Goodheart, EdD, introduces participants to the World Health Organization's International Classification of Diseases (ICD) diagnostic codes, which will be required for all billing and health information, including in the United States, starting in October. She also previews the next version of the codes, ICD-11, now in development. The program coincides with a Professional Development Training Institute on the ICD at APA headquarters March 28–29. The Office of Continuing Education in Psychology will soon offer as part of its continuing education programs the new APA book, “A Primer for ICD-10-CM Users: Psychological and Behavioral Conditions,” which will allow members to read the book and take an exam for continuing-education credit.

Another popular video-on-demand program is "Culturally Sensitive Health Promotion and Health Care Approaches for Eliminating Health Disparities," a one-hour webinar featuring Carolyn Tucker, PhD, a professor of community health and family medicine at the University of Florida. Among other lessons, Tucker teaches participants about common health disparities, how to promote healthy behaviors in a variety of communities and how to provide culturally sensitive health care.

For educators, in January APA also added "Primary Care Competencies," a webinar that familiarizes viewers with the 2013 Competencies for Psychological Practice in Primary Care, or the fundamental skills and knowledge needed to work effectively in primary-care settings. Speakers offer examples of how these competencies, such as knowledge of pharmacology, are needed in primary-care settings and how the competencies can expand psychologists' opportunities in primary care.

Other CE offerings on integrated care include these APA Online Academy programs:

  • "Behavioral Sleep Medicine," a five-credit course on treating patients with sleep disorders.
  • "Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia," an eight-credit course on assessment and treatment strategies.
  • "Expanding Psychology Practice to Primary Health Care," a seven-credit course on integrating psychology into medicine.
  • "Creating Reciprocal Relationships with Medical Professionals," a four-credit course on working effectively with nurses, physicians and other medical staff.

All of our programs can be viewed online anytime, by computer, tablet or smartphone. All of our CE offerings are designed using science-of-learning principles to keep you engaged and to help you retain what you learn. As health care evolves, we aim to keep pace with our professional development offerings so that you have the most up-to-date instruction. We welcome your suggestions for new offerings at CPE.