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From the Executive Officer’s Desk—Overcoming the “DSM Fallacy”: Is It Time to Start Crowdsourcing Mental Health Treatments?

It is the nature of scientific inquiry to seek greater specificity in understanding natural phenomena, and our clinical research colleagues strive valiantly to do so. But the scientific method can lead us astray in that it demands a focus on problems, not patients. In this column, I analyze our lack of success in ameliorating the global burden of mental distress and suggest that crowdsourcing, a strategy enabled by widespread electronic communications, might provide a solution towards making effective interventions more widely available.

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Call for Nominations: The Committee on Disability Issues in Psychology

For the 2018-22 term, to further its mission and effectively address priorities, CDIP is seeking nominees with lived experience of disability culture, knowledge of the principles and implementation of Universal Design, commitment to disability inclusion within psychology and among various sectors of society, knowledge of human rights and law, and/or firsthand experience in APA governance, including at the state, regional, divisional or national level.

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From the Executive Officer’s Desk: There’s Gold In Them There Pills—Or Is There?

A recently published database tracking pharmaceutical company donations to not-for-profit associations provides data indicating that industry funding provides significant revenue to patient advocacy groups. Other data suggest that this funding might be intended to create informal lobbying groups that can act on behalf of drug manufacturers. While drug company promotional activities are not newsworthy, the absence of mental health associations from the list of funded groups raises questions about the influence of mental health advocacy.

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From the Executive Officer’s Desk—So Let’s Talk About Guidelines…

APA’s Council of Representatives has recently approved a Clinical Practice Guideline for the treatment of PTSD. Arguments for and against the use of clinical practice guidelines have been extensively—even ferociously—debated in psychology. Some point to accrued evidence supporting the use of specific therapies, others fear a devolution to prescriptive, mechanized treatments. Whether pro or con, discussions of guidelines must take into consideration the fact that regardless of the modality employed, effect sizes for mental health interventions are not terribly convincing to begin with. In this column, I’ll examine the new guideline and some of the assumptions underlying it.

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MHLG Letter to Veterans Affairs

National Register signed the Mental Health Liaison Group’s letter to Veterans Affairs requesting more information on their next steps for implementing the recommendations made from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) new report.

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Registrant Spotlight: Helene Satz, PsyD, ABPP

Registrant Helene Satz, PsyD, ABPP, CGP, will be presented the 2018 Harold S. Bernard Group Psychotherapy Training Award by the International Board for Certification of Group Psychotherapists. Congratulations!

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Hushmail for Healthcare

The National Register has partnered with Hushmail. Registrants get a 15% lifetime discount on the use of Hushmail for Healthcare, a secure, HIPAA-compliant email service that enables psychologists to send and receive private, encrypted emails and attachments to clients, insurance companies, colleagues and others.

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From the Executive Officer’s Desk—Health Care and the Profit Motive: Can Big Capitalists be Right?

In recent weeks we have heard news that three corporate titans of America, Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffet, and Jamie Dimon, have banded together to form a healthcare company that is “free of the profit motive” to serve, at least initially, the hundreds of thousands of individuals employed by Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, and JPMorgan Chase. While this may sound a bit surprising coming from three of the most successful capitalists in the world, the idea has merit. Details of the endeavor are understandably lacking, but in the absence of those details we can speculate about what a healthcare system free of a profit motive might look like.

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