Candidates for APA President
What do you see as the most challenging set of educational issues that APA should address and how would you propose moving on those issues?
Unity within our field is critical. Educators are struggling with funding cutbacks. Our young psychologists are leaving graduate school with record levels of debt, making it difficult for them to make a reasonable living. Students considering a career in psychology are rethinking their decisions because of economic limitations within the profession and this disproportionately impacts students from disadvantaged backgrounds. Psychology can make major contributions to society by developing and utilizing new technologies, using our basic science and addressing the educational needs of society. The president has the power to focus on issues and education will be a priority.
What do you see as the big opportunities for professional psychology in the 21st century? And what do we need to begin doing right now to capture them?
Our greatest challenge and opportunity is to ensure that the marketplace affords psychologists a reasonable living-thus ensuring continued access to quality psychological services for the public. Continued cuts in reimbursement and funding cuts for public service undermine our profession. Two great opportunities are to expand our practice into primary care and gain prescriptive authority. Primary-care providers treat over 60 percent of all mental health problems, without psychologists' help. We can become full partners in the health-care arena and particularly in primary health care. We can effectively prevent and treat the major health problems of our nation-but we need to be there. Visit http://www.bcm.edu/familymed/jbray/.
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