Reimbursement, record-keeping, trends in health service delivery and behavioral health disparities are the focus of several convention programs spearheaded by the APA Practice Directorate and related governance groups.
The session, "How psychologists can help identify and eliminate behavioral health disparities," on Saturday, July 31, at 11 a.m., will address behavioral health disparities from the perspective of four racial-cultural groups: African American, Native American, Asian American and Latino. The Committee for the Advancement of Professional Practice (CAPP) Task Force on Serious Mental Illness developed the program.
The session, which will be chaired by Arthur C. Evans Jr., PhD, deputy commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, will feature four panelists:
King Davis, PhD, director of the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health in Austin, Texas.
Larke Nahme Huang, PhD, senior policy associate for the Georgetown University Center for Child and Human Development and a member of President Bush's New Freedom Commission on Mental Health.
Mario Hernandez, PhD, associate professor, University of South Florida.
Candace M. Flemming, PhD, associate professor and director of training for the American Indian and Alaska Native Programs, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center.
Another practice session, "Health and behavior CPT codes: getting the payment you're due," on Saturday, July 31, at 10 a.m., will give practitioners information on reimbursement issues involving health and behavior services under the new Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) codes. Topics will include reimbursement by Medicare and private insurance carriers, data on psychologists' use of the codes and tips for integrating health and behavior assessment and intervention services into independent practice. The program, sponsored by CAPP and chaired by John Corrigan, PhD, director of the division of rehabilitation psychology and department of physical medicine and rehabilitation at Ohio State University, will feature three panelists:
Joseph Casciani, PhD, president of VeriCare in San Diego.
Alan Delamater, PhD, of the department of pediatrics at the University of Miami School of Medicine.
Diane Pedulla, JD, director of regulatory affairs in APA's Practice Directorate.
Information technology and records are always an issue for practitioners. So "Record-keeping in an electronic age: guidance for practitioners," on Friday, July 30, at 10 a.m., will provide useful strategies for addressing legal and ethical issues in record-keeping in various practice settings. Attendees will hear about the role of record-keeping in coordinating service delivery across diverse health-care disciplines and the impact of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act privacy rule on documentation of psychological services.
The session will also offer attendees tips for evaluating the security of practice records and implementing security solutions to protect health information. The program, chaired by Cynthia Ann Sturm, PhD, a private practitioner and member of APA's Committee on Professional Practice and Standards, is sponsored by the Board of Professional Affairs. Panelists include:
Leigh W. Jerome, PhD, of Pacific Telehealth and Technology Hui.
Sara J. Knight, PhD, of the San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center.
Alan Nessman, JD, special counsel for APA's Practice Directorate.
Reimbursement and technology are always changing. But so is the delivery of health care. The session, "Psychological services as health care--disciplinary challenges, conundrums and opportunities," on Saturday, July 31, at 10 a.m., will explore the growing inclusion of psychological services as a standard part of health care. The panelists will also discuss how this trend should be incorporated in training new psychologists. The session, chaired by Jalie Tucker, PhD, of the University of Alabama, features several panelists:
Keith Humphreys, PhD, of the Stanford University School of Medicine.
Beverly E. Thorn, PhD, of the University of Alabama.
Suzanne Bennett Johnson, PhD, of the Florida State University College of Medicine.
Geoffrey M. Reed, PhD, assistant executive director for professional development in APA's Practice Directorate.
Another practice session, "Disaster mental health: changes, trends and political issues," on Saturday, July 31, at 9 a.m., will focus on changes under way in the delivery of disaster mental health services and how information and insights gained from disaster response work can help psychology better prepare for future disasters. The session is chaired and presented by leaders of the APA Disaster Response Network and the American Red Cross Disaster Mental Health Services office, including: Chair Richard A. Heaps, PhD; John R. Tassey, PhD; Alma Elder, PhD; Susan Hamilton, PhD; and Gloria J. Neumann, PsyD. Div. 31 (State Psychological Association Affairs) is sponsoring the session.
And finally, "The 11th annual institute for psychology in the schools," on Tuesday, July 27, at 9 a.m., will focus on learning disability assessment and diagnosis in the post-Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) era. IDEA, which is now under reauthorization by the federal government, sets criteria for assessing and diagnosing children with special education needs, especially those with learning disabilities. Program speakers will debate alternative diagnostic theories and methods.