Leading Stories, Articles

November 1st, 2011

Disaster mental health plays key role in emergencies

By Nan Shnitzler

Psychologist Ann Raynolds, Psy.D., is a trauma specialist, but she was not prepared for Hurricane Irene’s floodwaters that devastated her corner of Vermont, washing out roads and bridges and inundating her office in Quechee. She lost books, files, equipment and personal items accumulated over a 30-year practice. “I had to recognize this was quite a displacement, my beautiful office condo, which I owned,” Raynolds says. “It’s kind of a shock to lose things like that. I just had to take a deep breath and ask, `what do we do next?’” Disasters, whether natural or man-made, might each be different, but [More]

November 1st, 2011

Program trains veterans to treat their counterparts

By Pamela Berard

A new program in Massachusetts aims to train military veterans who are interested in mental health careers and pair them up with veterans in need of services. “Train Vets to Treat Vets,” a partnership between the Department of Veterans’ Services and the Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology (MSPP), started this summer and will place and supervise veterans who are MSPP graduate interns in veterans’ outreach services centers. The partnership strives to provide culturally sensitive services and also offer veterans interested in mental health care the credentials to make it a career. “Our expectation is that a person who has had [More]

November 1st, 2011

Careers in military behavioral health: opportunities for growth

By Phyllis Hanlon

Psychologists seeking to serve their country, use their clinical skills to help a most deserving demographic, enhance their professional expertise and achieve personal fulfillment may find what they are looking for by earning a commission in the Army. To enhance recruiting efforts, the U.S. Army offers a number of opportunities with significant incentives and benefits for psychologists who join the service. Ingrid Lim, Psy.D., command psychologist, U.S. Army Recruiting Command in Fort Knox, Ky., says, “The increased need for psychologists, both uniformed and civilian, is related to changes in how forces are structured, such as increases in authorization/requirements and because [More]

November 1st, 2011

Validity of gene-by-environment studies questioned

By Catherine Robertson Souter

In the eternal discussion between nature or nurture, as to which has greater input on health and well-being, the answer may well be… both. Scientists generally believe that there is a physical interaction between genetics and the environment that may be identified down to the specific gene. Over the past decade, numerous studies have been done and published in leading journals to pinpoint the exact effect of these interactions. But when Harvard School of Public Health post-doctoral fellow Laramie Duncan, Ph.D., began to look closely at the literature in preparation for initiating a gene-by-environment interaction study, she started to have [More]

November 1st, 2011

Malpractice in Psychology: A Practical Resource for Clinicians

By James K Luiselli EdD ABPP BCBA-D

By David L. Shapiro and Steven R. Smith American Psychological Association Washington, D.C., 2011  ‘Must read’ book is invaluable resource Reviewed By James K. Luiselli, Ed.D., ABPP, BCBA-D Malpractice claims against psychologists are relatively few compared to other healthcare professions but equally debilitating. There is, of course, financial threat but challenges to one’s reputation and self-esteem as well. Preventing malpractice liability demands deliberate attention to basic practice standards and implementation of risk avoidance strategies. Thankfully, this book tells how to do so and true to its title, is indeed a practical resource for clinicians. Psychologist, David L. Shapiro, and attorney, [More]

November 1st, 2011

Health care law provokes strong reactions

By Edward Stern J.D.

Is it the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) or is it Obamacare (O)? A person can tell whether or not someone likes or dislikes this federal legislation by the name he uses to describe it. The law’s name is PPACA, but opponents have dubbed it Obamacare. The use of vocabulary to frame discussion is similar to the concepts of language used in the debate surrounding abortion. Those who are in favor of the availability of abortion use the phrase “a woman’s right to choose,” while opponents use the phrase “right to life.” Vocabulary is a very powerful tool. [More]

November 1st, 2011

Just one of those days?

By Alan Bodnar Ph.D.

“Hi, my name is Rex and when I’m not doing psychology, I climb mountains. This past season I summitted Everest for the third time.” Anyway, that’s what I thought he said. It probably just felt like he was living an impossibly adventurous life, especially on a day when I wasn’t much in the mood for going around the table and telling something about ourselves that isn’t related to work. We’ve all participated in these kinds of “getting to know you” exercises, usually at the start of a new work group, so I should have been prepared. On that particular day, [More]

November 1st, 2011

Private Practice Made Simple

By Paul Efthim PhD

By Randy J. Paterson New Harbinger Publications, Inc. Oakland, Calif., 2011  Book offers soup-to-nuts collection of tips Reviewed By Paul Efthim, Ph.D. Whether you are fresh out of training or in mid-career, opening a private practice can be a frightening prospect. A recent book by Vancouver psychologist Randy Paterson offers a soup-to-nuts collection of tips on how to launch and manage a successful psychotherapy practice while managing the inevitable anxieties along the way. Having built a private group practice and given workshops on the topic, Paterson knows the territory well. He has produced a well-written guidebook that will appeal to [More]

November 1st, 2011

Is your client spiritual?

By Jennifer E Chase

Asking early may help treat their anxiety The next time you’re preparing for a new client intake who suffers anxiety and impatience, adding a few questions about spirituality and its importance to your client’s daily life might lead toward more productive sessions. That was the major take-away from a McLean Hospital study that reported those who believe in a kind God worry less and better handle life’s unpredictable nature than those who believe God is indifferent, unkind or doesn’t exist at all. David H. Rosmarin, Ph.D., is an assistant in psychology at Harvard-affiliated McLean Hospital. He presented the paper based [More]

October 1st, 2011

Sexual reactive behavior: myth or fact?

By Phyllis Hanlon

Children are one of life’s greatest mysteries – just ask any parent. Since the inception of psychological reflection, children have been one of the demographics that have come under a microscope. While some advances and understanding has been achieved, many areas remain unclear, in particular, the subject of sexuality in children. According to Robert A. Dell, Psy.D, private practitioner in West Hartford, Conn., it often comes as a big surprise to some people that children are sexual creatures. “There is a good amount of positive/prosocial types of sexual behavior that goes under the radar of the parents,” he says. “The [More]