Psychotherapy and Counseling are Different

Course excerpt from Therapy Tidbits – March/April 2018

Psychotherapy and Counseling are Different

In an article entitled “Master’s therapy not that different” in the Jan/Feb 2018 edition, Larry Powitz, EdD, asks what is it that doctoral level mental health practitioners do different than non-doctoral level mental health practitioners, such as master level psychologists, LCSWs, LCPCs, MFTs, and he concludes that the psychotherapy by all provided is quite the same. “I say the MA can sing the same tune as the PhD,” concludes Dr. Powitz.

I agree with him. I believe that the intervention being provided by many doctoral level (PhD, PsyD, and MD) and non-doctoral level (MEd, MA, MS, MSW, LPCC, MDiv, EAP) mental health practitioners is quite the same. For me the important questions are “How is that?” and “What’s happening?”

Psychotherapy is on the decline, and counseling is growing. The word psychotherapy isn’t even used much anymore. Or the terms psychotherapy and counseling are used interchangeably, as though they are one and the same, but they aren’t.

Psychotherapy and counseling are two different disciplines.

Psychotherapy is an in-depth, sometimes long-term, project that addresses inner and often covert core issues. It’s meant to get at and affect the understructure of a person. Carl Jung called psychotherapy treatment of the soul, which for me implies depth.

Counseling addresses important but external overt behaviors, usually for brief duration, teaching and improving areas of outward functioning.

Psychotherapy is about personal growth, and the relationship between psychotherapist and patient is critical. Counseling is about life management and adjustment, and the relationship between counselor and client is quite secondary.

For example, there is counseling for career and finances and anger management and sexual issues and grief and psychotropic usage. There is no career or financial or grief etc. in psychotherapy, because psychotherapy isn’t directly about such issues; it’s about the person underlying those issues. Psychotherapy is a life changing experience, while counseling is guidance, support, and education.

Homework isn’t typical in psychotherapy, other than encouragement to reflect on one’s experience during the session, whereas homework assignments are frequent in counseling, often with time spent in sessions reviewing and discussing lessons, similar to what happens in a classroom. Psychotherapy is heavily feeling and experience oriented, whereas counseling is heavily cognitive and behavioral focused. In traditional language, psychotherapy is a primary process activity and counseling is very much a secondary process activity.

Though psychotherapy and counseling are two distinct disciplines, there has been over the decades a homogenization of the two. For many, the two have become one, in thinking and in practice. Counseling now includes some psychotherapy, and psychotherapy includes more counseling. The homogenization has blended and even equated two different tunes into a new third tune.

I think it’s been a loss for psychotherapy. It’s like blending and equating physical therapy and surgery. Physical therapy is valuable and exactly what some people need, but it’s not surgery. Counseling is valuable and exactly what some people need, but it’s not psychotherapy. Today psychotherapy in its fullest sense is hard to find, and most mental health providers, doctoral level and non-doctoral level, are providing a service that is quite the same. Most are singing the same tune, the homogenized third tune.

Therapy Tidbits – March/April 2018Therapy Tidbits – March/April 2018 is a 1-hour online continuing education (CE) course comprised of select articles from the March/April 2018 issue of The National Psychologist, a private, independent bi-monthly newspaper intended to keep psychologists (and other mental health professionals) informed about practice issues.

This online course provides instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. After enrolling, click on My Account and scroll down to My Active Courses. From here you’ll see links to download/print the course materials and take the CE test (you can print the test to mark your answers on it while reading the course document).

Successful completion of the online CE test (80% required to pass, 3 chances to take) and course evaluation are required to earn a certificate of completion. Click here to learn more. Have a question? Contact us. We’re here to help!

Professional Development Resources is a nonprofit educational corporation 501(c)(3) organized in 1992. We are approved to sponsor continuing education by the American Psychological Association (APA); the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA); the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy, Psychology & School Psychology, Dietetics & Nutrition, Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and Occupational Therapy Practice; the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board and Board of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology; the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs; the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists and State Board of Social Worker Examiners; and are CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Target Audience: PsychologistsCounselorsSocial WorkersMarriage & Family Therapist (MFTs)Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs)Occupational Therapists (OTs)Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs)School Psychologists, and Teachers

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!

Multiple Relationships Not Always Bad

By Ofer Zur, PhD

Entering into dual relationships with psychotherapy patients has been a topic of significant controversy in professional psychology. Although these types of extratherapeutic alliances have generally been considered to be unethical conduct, some authors recently have supported their development as both ethical and, in some cases, even therapeutic.

I was surprised to read the statement of my esteemed colleague, Ed Zuckerman, PhD, in the last issue of The National Psychologist (Nov/Dec, 2011), whereas part of an article on “The Fiduciary Heart of Ethics“ he stated, “We have an ethical obligation to avoid multiple relationships.”

This statement is in contrast to the APA’s code of ethics, (Section 3.05), which clearly states that: “A psychologist refrains from entering into a multiple relationship if the multiple relationship could reasonably be expected to impair the psychologist’s objectivity, competence or effectiveness in performing his or her functions as a psychologist or otherwise risks exploitation or harm to the person with whom the professional relationship exists.”

Multiple relationships not always badMultiple relationships not reasonably expected to cause impairment or risk exploitation or harm are not unethical.

Zuckerman’s statement and discussion of multiple relationships are not only incorrect, unsupported and outdated, but also are in clear contrast to the standard of care of psychotherapy and counseling. For example, multiple relationships are mandated in military settings where psychologists often have primary loyalty to the Department of Defense and only a secondary loyalty to the person they are treating in the consulting room. Multiple relationships are inherent in some correctional settings, such as prisons, where psychologists have a responsibility to the security of the institution, as well as to the mental health of actual patients.

Zuckerman, who to the best of my knowledge, lives in Pennsylvania, should be aware that multiple relationships are unavoidable in small communities and rural areas, which are quite prevalent in his state. In fact, they are a normal and healthy part of such interconnected communities. Familiarity and multiple relationships between all members of small communities, including health care providers, is how such communities survive and thrive.

Not all multiple relationships are created equal. There are different types of multiple relationships:

  • A social multiple relationship is one in which a therapist and client are also friends, acquaintances or have some other type of social relationship within their community.
  • A professional multiple relationship is where a psychotherapist/counselor and client, are also professional colleagues in colleges or training institutions, presenters in professional conferences, co-authors of a book, or other situations that create professional multiple relationships.
  • Institutional multiple relationships take place in the military, prisons, some police departments and mental hospitals where multiple relationships are an inherent part of the institutional settings.
  • Forensic multiple relationships involve clinicians who serve as treating therapists, evaluators and witnesses in trials or hearings.
  • Supervisory relationships inherently involve multiple relationships and multiple loyalties. A supervisor has a professional relationship and duty to the supervisee and to the client, as well as to the profession.
  • A sexual multiple relationship is where a therapist and client are also involved in a sexual relationship.


Sexual multiple relationships with current clients are always unethical. A business multiple relationship is generally ill-advised. These are relationships, in which a therapist and client are business partners or have an employer-employee relationship.

Multiple relationships can be ethical or unethical, legal or illegal, and can be avoidable, unavoidable or mandated. They can also be planned and anticipated or unexpected. Then they can be concurrent or sequential and can also very with different levels of involvement, from low/minimal to intense.

In summary:

  • Non-sexual multiple relationships are not necessarily unethical or illegal.
  • Multiple relationships can’t be avoided in many settings and are mandated in others.
  • Multiple relationships are a healthy part of small and rural communities.
  • Sexual multiple relationships with current clients are always unethical.


Non-sexual multiple relationships do not necessarily lead to exploitation, sex or harm. The opposite can be true. Multiple relationships can reduce isolation and prevent exploitation rather than lead to it. Almost all professional association codes of ethics do not mandate a blanket avoidance of multiple relationships.

Source: Ethics & Risk Management: Expert Tips VI

The Heart of Being Helpful

The Heart of Being Helpful is a new 4-hour CEU course that provides useful vignettes, case studies, and personal insights to help both beginning and experienced therapists develop more empathy in therapeutic relationships.

The Heart of Being HelpfulBased on Dr. Peter Breggin’s more than 30 years of clinical experience as a psychiatrist and a therapist, this book illustrates the importance of developing a therapeutic bond – or healing presence – between helping professionals and their clients. The author provides useful vignettes, case studies, and personal insights to help both beginning and experienced therapists develop more empathy in therapeutic relationships. He asserts that the first step toward effective treatment is empathic self-transformation in the therapist. It is empathy and self-transformation that lie at the heart of being helpful. Topics include vulnerability, nurturing, helplessness, forgiveness, and spirituality, as well as tips for working with clients in extreme emotional crises, children and families, and clients from culturally diverse backgrounds. This is a test only course (book not included). The book (or e-book) can be purchased from Amazon. Course #40-36 | 25 posttest questions

Professional Development Resources is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists; by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC) to offer home study continuing education for NCCs (Provider #5590); by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB Provider #1046, ACE Program); by the National Association of Alcoholism & Drug Abuse Counselors (NAADAC Provider #000279); by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences (#PCE1625); by the Florida Boards of Clinical Social Work, Marriage & Family Therapy, and Mental Health Counseling (#BAP346) and Psychology & School Psychology (#50-1635); by the Illinois DPR for Social Work (#159-00531); by the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board (#RCST100501); by the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs (#193); and by the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists (#114) and State Board of Social Worker Examiners (#5678).

What Customers are Saying:

“This book is a pleasant, upbeat, well-written and thought-provoking discussion of the importance of developing a therapeutic bond — what the author calls “healing presence” — between helping professionals and their clients.”

“A marvelous book for anyone who wishes to help others. Clearly shows that self-awareness is essential for helpful/empathic relationships. Found it both challenging and encouraging.”

 

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The Healing Power of Emotion

The Healing Power of EmotionThe Healing Power of Emotion is a new 7-hour home study CEU course that draws on cutting-edge neuroscience to better understand emotion.

Clinicians have long debated the exact nature of the essential elements that bring about successful healing in psychotherapy. How do we regulate emotion in a healthy way? How can we foster environments that are conducive to positive relationships and optimal health? Specifically, how can we use our emotions to heal and mend emotional injuries? This course is an exploration of how we regulate our bodies, form healthy connections with others, and mend emotional ruptures when they occur.

We are “hardwired to connect with each another, we connect through our emotions,” say the authors. The unique aspect of this course is in the mix of leading neuroscientists, developmental psychologists, therapy researchers, and clinicians who work together to illustrate how we can regulate emotion in a healthy way. A variety of emotions, both positive and negative, are examined in detail, drawing on both research and clinical observations. Just as emotionally traumatic events can tear apart the fabric of family and psyche, the emotions can become powerful catalysts for the transformations that are at the heart of the healing process.

“It is not often that a book with such broad and far-reaching implications for success in psychotherapy comes along,” says Leo Christie, PhD, President and CEO of Professional Development Resources. “Sadly, it is rare for us to see professionals in the areas of neurobiology, physiology, and psychotherapy come together in a collaboration of this magnitude. When we work in a splintered fashion, it is easy to miss the big picture, such as the one that emerges in this extraordinary volume. We are, after all, biological beings, and it makes perfect sense that physical and emotional functions are inseparable from each other.”

The Healing Power of Emotion includes chapters on such topics as reciprocal influences between body and brain, the communication of sympathy and meaning, and possible answers to the essential question – What is emotion? Included also are examinations of the role of emotion in energy and vitality, pleasure and desire, emotion and mindfulness, and emotion in intimate relationships. Chapters focus on specific clinical applications with case examples, including work with individuals, couples, and families.

According to the authors, “our brains, bodies, and minds are inseparable from the emotions that animate them. Emotions are at the nexus of thought and action, of self and other, of person and environment, of biology and culture… Specific emotions include love, joy, pain, fear, anger, gratitude, grief, care, closeness, awe, shame, excitement, agony, passion, and compassion. At one end of the continuum, we find extreme emotional states such as helplessness, terror, despair, and immobility; at the other, faith, enthusiasm, curiosity, tenderness, aesthetic wonder, ecstasy, wisdom, awe, vitality, and even transcendence.”

The psychotherapies described in this course are moving beyond exploration of pathologies to the transformative experiences where joy, new energy, and delight become possible; that and helping people regulate their dysregulated nervous system. Learn more @ https://www.pdresources.org/course/index/6/1156/The-Healing-Power-of-Emotion

Professional Development Resources is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists; by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC) to offer home study continuing education for NCCs (Provider #5590); by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB Provider #1046, ACE Program); by the National Association of Alcoholism & Drug Abuse Counselors (NAADAC Provider #000279); by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences (#PCE1625); by the Florida Boards of Clinical Social Work, Marriage & Family Therapy, and Mental Health Counseling (#BAP346) and Psychology & School Psychology (#50-1635); by the Illinois DPR for Social Work (#159-00531); by the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board (#RCST100501); by the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs (#193); and by the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists (#114) and State Board of Social Worker Examiners (#5678).

What customers are saying:

“Wow–what a rich book! However, don’t expect to get through this book quickly (you won’t want to) because it’s chock-full of useful information. It is complete with up-to-date research presented by some of the most cutting edge scientists/clinicians.”

“I loved this book. It is an extraordinary 5 star buffet of articles by cutting edge neurobiology researchers and psychotherapy clinicians, a who’s who in the field. Both the articles on the brain and psychotherapy are consumately well written, and clinical articles have great case illustrations. The psychotherapies described here are moving beyond exploration of pathologies to the transformative experiences where joy, new energy, and delight become possible; that and helping people regulate their dysregulated nervous system. This book is a weaving together of two disciplines that demonstrate what this new frontier looks like. If you have one book to buy — make it this one.”

“The book is a fascinating collection of papers–all connected, yet each with its own distinct flavor reflecting the unique expertise of the individual author. As a clinician who does not have a neuroscience background, I found the book both accessible and highly relevant to clinical practice. I have read these authors separately so am thrilled the meta perspective presented explicitly in the introduction, as well as the weaving together of the concepts that occurs throughout the chapters.”

“I’m really impressed with the level and quality of material in this course. I come to your organization for this high-quality and have yet to be disappointed. Thank you!”

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Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Effective for Bipolar Disorder

By

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Effective for Bipolar DisorderWhen someone begins treatment for bipolar disorder, I always recommend therapy along with medication because we know from studies that the combination of the two treatments works better than either alone.

However, most people think about psychotherapy (talk-therapy) when the word therapy is mentioned. That is not a bad thing. Psychotherapy has helped many people with and without bipolar disorder lead fuller, happier lives.

But another option that is effective for many people is cognitive behavioral therapy. This therapy has only been applied to bipolar disorder in the last decade, but it has been used to treat depression even longer. Studies on its effectiveness in bipolar disorder are preliminary, but so far the evidence suggests it is effective.

What is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?

Cognitive behavioral therapy is different than traditional therapy in that it is short-term and doesn’t involve delving into historic issues. Cognitive behavioral therapy is about the here and now and is about giving you tools to deal with the symptoms of bipolar disorder that you are experiencing today.

Cognitive behavioral therapy is an analytical process that encourages people to look at their behavior, feelings, and motivations to learn what triggers these situations and what can be done to handle them.

For example, in cognitive behavioral therapy:

  • The patient is asked to explore their distorted thinking such as “I am god” when manic or “I am worthless” when depressed.
  • Patients are encouraged to develop interpersonal routines such as sleeping and waking at the same time each day.
  • Patients work to understand the warning signs of oncoming mood episodes and learn how to cope with these symptoms to avoid episodes where possible (relapse prevention).
  • Patients are aided in exploring what triggers episodes or specific emotions.

Cognitive behavioral therapy may be delivered one-on-one or in groups.

For Whom Does Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Work?

It is my belief that anyone can benefit from cognitive behavioral therapy in some way; however, statistically, people with fewer than six mood episodes have been shown to have greater success with this therapy. Also, people who are in the midst of a crisis—either mania or depression—may not be in a place emotionally or intellectually to optimally benefit from cognitive behavioral therapy. Some degree of stability should be attained before attempting this therapy (medication and traditional psychotherapy may help achieve this).

It is recommended that specialists in cognitive behavioral therapy deliver the treatment for greatest success. If therapy is not available in your area, workbooks are available to walk you through the therapy although this likely won’t be as beneficial as a live therapist (and likely won’t be bipolar-specific).

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Is About Tools

Cognitive behavioral therapy is not a magic bullet for mental illness but it is an assortment of tools that can help you battle the illness every day. It helps you deal with the symptoms that may linger in spite of treatment with medication or while searching for the right medication.

Find out more about cognitive behavioral therapy from Simon Fraser University’s Core Information Document on Cognitive Behavioral Therapy or visiting Healthline’s page on cognitive behavioral therapy.

Source: http://www.healthline.com/health-blogs/bipolar-bites/cognitive-behavioral-therapy-effective-bipolar-disorder

Related Continuing Education Courses:

 

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Professional Development Resources Announces New Ethics and Risk Management Training

Professional Development Resources, a nationally accredited provider of continuing education for psychologists, social workers, counselors, marriage and family therapists, speech-language pathologists, registered dietitians and occupational therapists, has announced the publication of two new courses dealing with ethics and risk management. The two topics are considered essential training for professionals practicing in an increasingly complicated climate in which privacy is threatened and litigation is common.

Jacksonville, Florida – May 11, 2011 — Professional Development Resources has recently increased its curriculum in professional ethics and risk management courses. Many psychologists, social workers, counselors, speech-language pathologists and occupational therapists are required – as part of their periodic relicensure process – to complete courses related to ethics in the practice of their specialties.

The company’s website, http://www.pdresources.org, now offers over 180 accredited healthcare and mental health continuing education (CE) courses. Of this catalog, more than 20 relate to multiple aspects of ethics and risk management in clinical practice. The courses include modules on ethical decision making, privacy and confidentiality, maintenance of professional boundaries, multicultural competency, use of internet technologies, and management of high-risk clients. The wide range of courses is intended to provide clinicians with thoughtful perspectives on maintaining open, honest, and ethical relationships with their clients.

Risk management involves careful planning and documentation of all services and communications for the purpose of assuring that the professional has acted ethically, responsibly, and legally. The goals are to assure that the client’s best interests are upheld and that the clinician is prepared in case there is a lawsuit or licensing board complaint at a later date.

Leo Christie

"Clinicians who are thoughtful and ethical in developing and documenting their therapeutic work are those who are most effective in their work and least susceptible to lawsuits and ethics complaints."

“In many ways, risk management is the opposite side of the ethics coin, in that both processes ultimately contribute to the welfare of the client,” says Leo Christie, PhD, CEO of Professional Development Resources. “Clinicians who are thoughtful and ethical in developing and documenting their therapeutic work are those who are most effective in their work and least susceptible to lawsuits and ethics complaints. They get the job done in ways that result in high client satisfaction and low risk of adverse outcomes to any legal challenge.”

Among the most salient issues in healthcare ethics is the concern for privacy in handling clients’ personal information. If individuals are to benefit from health services, they must be assured that their personal information will be protected. This is far more challenging today than it was even a decade ago. The pervasive use of electronic communication technologies like cell phones, laptops, email, and social networking has created an environment in which new protections must be implemented. All professionals need to be trained in the most current procedures for safeguarding their clients’ protected health information in the recording, storage, and transmission of electronic records.

“We want to be sure that the clinicians who take our courses have access to training in the many facets of ethical conduct in practice, whatever their specialties, says Christie. “They need to be equipped to assure their clients of compliance with the highest and most recent standards of ethical behavior, while at the same time protecting their own ability to continue to practice.”

A wide variety of ethics and risk management course topics are available, including:

The entire ethics catalog can be seen at http://www.pdresources.org/Courses/Other/Ethics/CourseName/1/.

Professional Development Resources is a Florida nonprofit educational corporation founded in 1992 by licensed marriage and family therapist Leo Christie, PhD. The company, which is accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA), the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB), the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC), the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) – as well as many other national and state boards – has focused its efforts on making continuing education courses more efficient and widely accessible to health professionals by offering online home study coursework. Its current expanded curriculum includes a wide variety of ethics courses and other clinical topics intended to equip health professionals to offer state-of-the art services to their clients.

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Ethics in Therapy: Quick Tips I

Ethics in Therapy

Click on image to view course webpage

This new online CE course addresses a variety of ethics topics in the form of seven archived articles from The National Psychologist and is intended to provide psychotherapists of all specialties with a set of brief, practical tips for dealing with ethical dilemmas that present themselves in everyday practice.

Topics Include:

Office ‘Bookstore’ Should Not be for Profit
By Jeffrey E. Barnett, PsyD, ABPP

Psychologists frequently make recommendations to clients for books to read, workbooks and CDs to use, and even movies or television shows to view. In fact, bibliotherapy, the integration of such media into ongoing psychotherapy is a widely used and often highly effective addition to psychotherapy. Learn the issues involved to avoid crossing any boundaries.

Ethical, Effective Marketing for Your Private Practice
By Susan Giurleo, PhD

Many psychologists are cautious, confused and unsure of how to market their work. Many worry that marketing is unethical and something that we should not consider as we pursue a private practice career. Learn effective, ethical marketing techniques you can use to market your practice.

Law Impacts Psychology
By Richard Lawlor, PhD, JD

Over the past several years many articles have appeared in this newspaper for practitioners dealing with various aspects of psychology and the law. Some dealt with a substantive area of psychology and its impact on the law, for example research on children’s memories and the implications for interviewing children and using them as witnesses. Discover the areas of law that psychologists need to be aware of, and understand.

Duty to Warn is Now Duty to Protect
Review by Milton F. Shore, PhD, ABPP

Book review of: The Duty to Protect: Ethical, Legal and Professional Considerations for Mental Health Professionals by Werth, J.L., Welfel, E. and Benjamin, G.A.H. (Eds.) 2009. Washington, D.C. American Psychological Association.

Test Givers Must be Qualified
By Jeffrey E. Barnett, PsyD, ABPP

As a busy professional, it makes great sense to utilize others when it is appropriate to do so. This can be a much more efficient way to work than doing everything yourself. But, the situation is more complex when clinical activities are involved. Learn the ethical issues, laws and regulations for use of non-licensed subordinates in the provision of clinical services.

To Collect or Not to Collect?
By Ofer Zur, PhD

In today’s economy and financial difficulties the questions regarding fees and debt collection from clients seem to be more frequent and more relevant. In times of economic crisis, many people who have lost their homes or jobs understandably seek psychotherapy to better cope with stress due to mounting debt and loss. Explore the relevant professional, relational, clinical, ethical, legal and unintentional consequences aspects of this issue.

Duty to Warn, Protect Differs in HIV Cases
By Jeffrey E. Barnett, PsyD, ABPP

The situation where a client who is HIV-positive or who has AIDS reports having unprotected sex with another person or having done so in the past raises a number of ethical challenges. Explore the relevant issues of informed consent, confidentiality and exceptions to confidentiality, laws concerning the duty to warn and protect when threats of dangerous behavior are made and case law that may impact these areas.

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Multicultural Mental Health Practice with Older Adults: APA Guidelines

Multicultural Mental Health Practice with Older AdultsThis NEW web-based online continuing education course requires an internet connection to access the required online reading materials. Course instructions provide direct links to the free, public-access online documents and available resources. This course is based on a report from the American Psychological Association regarding multicultural competency in geropsychology and is relevant for any mental health professional working with older adults. The APA report summarizes the work of the American Psychological Association Committee on Aging and its Working Group on Multicultural Competency in Geropsychology. The purposes are to: explore the key issues regarding the infusion of multicultural competence throughout geropsychology; make recommendations for future action addressing practice, research, education and training, and public policy issues; and inform psychologists of existing resources to improve their own multicultural competence in working with older adults. Course #10-33 | 2010 | 10 posttest questions | 4 page course download includes instructions, direct links to online course materials, and posttest questions

CE Credit: 1 Hours (0.1 CEUs)
Target Audience: Psychologists, Counselors, Social Workers, MFTs, OTs
Learning Level: Intermediate

Learning Objectives:

1. Define geropsychology, culture, and cultural competence
2. Describe several features of the aging process
3. Identify multicultural concerns with regard to the aging process.
4. Apply a model of discrimination to understanding ageism
5. Identify several characteristics of a multiculturally competent provider of geropsychological services
6. Describe methods for improving services and healthcare to older adults

About the Author(s):

The American Psychological Association (APA), located in Washington, D.C., is a professional organization with more than 150,000 members, including researchers, educators, clinicians, consultants, and students. The document on which this course is based was compiled and written by members of the American Psychological Association.

Accreditation Statement:

Professional Development Resources is recognized as a provider of continuing education by the following:
AOTA: American Occupational Therapy Association (#3159)
APA: American Psychological Association
ASWB: Association of Social Work Boards (#1046)
CDR: Commission on Dietetic Registration (#PR001)
NBCC: National Board for Certified Counselors (#5590)
NAADAC: National Association of Alcohol & Drug Abuse Counselors (#00279)
California: Board of Behavioral Sciences (#PCE1625)
Florida: Boards of SW, MFT & MHC (#BAP346); Psychology & School Psychology (#50-1635); Dietetics & Nutrition (#50-1635); Occupational Therapy Practice (#34). PDResources is CE Broker compliant.
Illinois: DPR for Social Work (#159-00531)
Ohio: Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board (#RCST100501)
South Carolina: Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs (#193)
Texas: Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists (#114) & State Board of Social Worker Examiners (#5678)

Risk Management is Part of Life for Psychotherapists

Professional Development Resources RiskManagementEducationOnline, a nationally accredited provider of continuing education (CE) for psychologists, social workers, counselors, and marriage and family therapists, has announced the release of a new continuing education course on realistic risk management for mental health professionals.

Jacksonville, FL (Vocus/PRWEB ) August 1, 2009 — Professional Development Resources, RiskManagementEducationOnline has released a new continuing education course that details the real risks of practicing in mental health professions, along with strategies for anticipating and minimizing risks. Areas of special emphasis include the impact of managed care and the complex interaction of new HIPAA regulations with legal and ethical considerations. The six-hour course, which is available online, makes the case that there are real risks associated with independent practice, but that most risky situations can be managed with thoughtful clinical decision making and careful attention to detail in day-to-day clinical practice.

The average mental health practitioner in independent practice who belongs to a managed care organization (MCO) must perform a balancing act, attempting to attend to and satisfy the requirements of half a dozen entities. These include the practitioner’s own profession (code of ethics), state licensure laws and rules, federal regulations (HIPAA privacy laws), the MCO’s limitations and guidelines, local standards of practice, and a variety of state and national child abuse and ‘duty to protect’ laws. Sometimes the requirements are inconsistent – or even in conflict – with each other, and the clinician must unravel the tangles in order to discern the ethical and legal course of action.

It may seem ironic that those who practice in the helping professions have to be so aware of practicing defensively. Most of the people who complete lengthy training programs to become psychotherapists do so because of a desire to help people. Yet, over the last 10 years, there has been a major increase in the number of lawsuits, licensing board actions, and ethics complaints against mental health practitioners. How has this need for defensive practice come about?

There seem to be a number of contributing factors. Changes in the economic system, the growth of managed care, increased federal and state regulations, advancing technology, and greater demands for oversight and accountability in clinical practice have made record keeping and communications much more complex, time consuming, and risky. Many clinicians are frustrated by the extra work they must do to satisfy the complex – and sometimes contradictory – demands of regulators and insurers. This CE program offers practical take-home tools for minimizing risk and covering one’s assets, associates, and actions.

“One cannot insure against or prevent all risks. That is why it is called risk management, and not risk prevention,” says Ed Zuckerman, PhD, clinical psychologist and author of the course. “There are very real emotional, personal, and financial costs involved in licensing board complaints and malpractice suits. Risk management involves reducing the potential impacts by reducing the levels of threat, vulnerability, and likelihood at the lowest cost or effort.”

One of the unique aspects of this course is that it gives the reader the opportunity to estimate his or her own individual risk of being the target of a licensing board complaint or malpractice suit. Based on the real occurrence of complaints and lawsuits brought against individuals in each particular profession, the author guides the reader through a mathematical probability sequence that results in a realistic risk self-assessment. The reader can then implement specific strategies designed to reduce his or her individual risk.

“I have never seen such an inclusive collection of rational strategies, thoughtful analyses, and ready-to-use tools brought together in one place before,” says Leo Christie, PhD, CEO of Professional Development Resources. “Independent practice has become more risky, and many clinicians have not adapted. What are the real-life risks? What constitutes ‘standard of care?’ How long do we have to keep clinical records? How can we be sure that electronic records are secure and confidential? We can all learn how to protect our clients and ourselves by implementing changes that are surprisingly simple.”

The new risk management course and a number of others – all of which are available instantly online and can be completed any time and anywhere – include:
Realistic Risk Management, (2009) 85 pages, HIPAA Help: A Compliance Manual for Psychotherapists, (2009) 263 pages, Ethics & Risk Management: Expert Tips I, (2008) 22 pages, and
Ethics & Risk Management: Expert Tips II, (2009) 26 pages.

About Professional Development Resources, Inc.

Professional Development Resources is a Florida nonprofit educational corporation founded in 1992 by licensed marriage and family therapist Leo Christie, PhD. The company, which is accredited by the American Psychological Association (APA), the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB), the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC), the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) – as well as many other national and state boards – has focused its efforts on making continuing education courses more efficient and widely accessible to health professionals by offering online home study coursework. Its current expanded curriculum includes a wide variety of clinical topics intended to equip health professionals to offer state-of-the art services to their clients.

Contact:

Professional Development Resources, Inc.
800-979-9899
http://www.pdresources.org