Articles, Leading Stories

October 1st, 2015

Mobile app at Walden monitors recovery

By Pamela Berard

A Massachusetts private psychiatric hospital is using a mobile app for co-managing eating disorder recovery in real time. Walden Behavioral Care of Waltham, which provides inpatient, residential, partial hospitalization, and intensive outpatient care for patients with eating disorders, is using the mobile health platform Recovery Record, which can be used on an iPhone, iPad or Android and enables patients and their providers to continuously monitor progress. The app allows users to self-manage their recovery with behavioral monitoring. The system incorporates Cognitive Behavioral Therapy; personalized meal plans; clinical goals; and motivation enhancement, such as aspirational songs and supportive statements and emoticons. [More]

October 1st, 2015

Digital Playground popular

By Janine Weisman

His name is Alex and he was in the eighth grade last February when he anchored the “Greenwood News.” He enthusiastically reports the arrival of new students on campus and the basketball team’s recent victory after four losses. He reacts with comical shivering after another student finishes a snowy weather report and reminds viewers about the upcoming Annual Gettsyburg Gala, where students continue the tradition of reciting the Gettysburg Address before a panel of judges. “He’s a highly energetic kid, but when he’s working on these movies, he’s in one spot,” said Benjamin Stimson, who runs his own film production [More]

October 1st, 2015

EChO program challenges youth

By Catherine Robertson Souter

Visitors to a small school in the scenic New Hampshire town of Northfield may be surprised to find students climbing walls, skiing hills, biking trails or paddling the nearby waters that make the region so attractive to residents and tourists alike. For these children, overcoming a fear of heights on a ropes course may mean a little more than it would for most people. At Spaulding Youth Center, a day and residential school that caters to students from five to 21 who are dealing with autism and other emotional, behavioral, intellectual and developmental challenges, educators learned early on that using [More]

October 1st, 2015

Psychologist’s career has happiness focus

By Catherine Robertson Souter

Everyone wants to be happy. At least, they say they do. But, although we all purport to seek happiness, how many people make it a true priority? In some cases, we chase things that we only think will make us happy and in others, we don’t make time for those that we know will. For Catherine Sanderson, Ph.D., James E. Ostendarp Professor of Psychology at Amherst College, the subject of happiness has become a major focus of her professional career. Although her own re-search focuses on social-personality psychology, close relationships and health-related behavior, she has become somewhat of an expert [More]

October 1st, 2015

Therapy, recreation integrated

By Howard Newman

The Grove School, a therapeutic boarding school in Madison, Conn., provides a holistic environment for students in grades 6-12. By integrating education, therapy and recreation into a year-round program, the school creates a family-type structure that allows residents to heal, learn and enjoy group activities in a non-restrictive setting. Utilizing the “Educateur” program model, teachers have roles that extend well beyond the classroom. “They are dormitory parents, activity leaders and mentors,” explained Executive Director Peter Chorney, M.Ed. “This requires our teachers to work long hours and live on site. They understand that part of the work to heal and connect [More]

August 21st, 2015

Review finds APA ethics compromised

By Phyllis Hanlon

In July, Attorney David H. Hoffman of Sidley Austin LLP released an independent investigative review of the American Psychological Association’s ethics guidelines, national security interrogations and torture. The findings are sending shockwaves throughout the psychology community. Rosanna Lak, executive director of the Vermont Psychological Association, reported that its full board of directors issued a letter stating in part, “… its shock in response to the findings of the Hoffman report and the corruption it details. As your state organization, we intend to do our best to both support and hold APA accountable as it strives to implement institutional reforms in [More]

August 21st, 2015

Discussion on PSYPACT proposal continues

By Phyllis Hanlon

On June 8, the Massachusetts Psychological Association held an Advocacy Committee meeting to discuss the Psychology Interjurisdictional Compact (PSYPACT), which has been proposed by the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards. The compact calls for a regulatory framework under which licensed psychologists in states that agree to join will be allowed to practice across state lines through HIPAA-compliant video conferencing. Additionally, these psychologists would be given a “Passport” that grants the right to practice in-person in another state for up to 30 days per calendar year. James Leffert, Ed.D., chair of the MPA Advocacy Committee, reported that Eric Harris, [More]

August 21st, 2015

Duggar case raises questions on risk, reporting, re-offending

By Janine Weisman

Clinical psychologist Carlos A. Cuevas, Ph.D., often uses examples from media coverage in his classroom discussions at Northeastern University’s School of Criminology and Criminal Justice where he is an associate professor. The Josh Duggar case will not be one of them. “I won’t use it, but I guarantee I’ll have some students ask me about it,” said Cuevas who specializes in the assessment and treatment of survivors of victimization and trauma and sexual offenders in his private practice in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The oldest of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar’s 19 children publicly apologized last May after news reports he had [More]

August 21st, 2015

Fight for domestic violence prevention continues

By Janine Weisman

For the third consecutive year, efforts to establish a domestic violence prevention fund through a proposed increase in the marriage license fee failed at the Rhode Island Statehouse. While the Senate passed a measure to create a domestic violence prevention fund with the purpose of funding evidence-based programs for preventing domestic and dating violence, the House of Representatives held a similar bill for further study before the General Assembly adjourned June 25. But Rhode Island Coalition against Domestic Violence Executive Director Deborah DeBare isn’t giving up. “What we’re planning to do is re-group over the summer and have some more [More]

August 21st, 2015

Web site to track parity

By Rivkela Brodsky

A new Web site for tracking parity state by state was announced during the opening session of the third annual Kennedy Forum National Conference held in Boston in June. ParityTrack.org, a project of the Kennedy Forum and the Thomas Scattergood Behavioral Health Foundation, tracks implementation of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008 through reports that analyze legislation, regulatory actions and litigation at federal and state levels, according to information provided by the forum. “It’s to find out where your state stands on the implementation of a federal law that guarantees all your state’s residents who have [More]

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