A year of accomplishments
By Dr. NOrMaN B. aNDErSON • aPa ChIEF ExECu TIVE OFFICEr
As the end of 2011 approaches, I’d like to reflect on some of the significant ways
that APA has moved to make the association even better. This year, we’ve focused
on several initiatives that promote and facilitate the great work psychologists do.
Much of our work is guided by the association’s strategic plan. In August, the
Council of Representatives approved funding for seven key initiatives:
• Increasing member engagement and value by assessing and
restructuring our business models.
• Conducting ongoing analysis of current and future
demand for the psychology work force to meet national needs.
• Continuing to develop treatment guidelines to promote the
translation of psychological science into practice.
• Expanding the public education campaign to include the
entire discipline of psychology.
• Promoting opportunities for graduate and professional
development to advance psychology’s role in health, including
• Increasing support for research, training, public education
and interventions that reduce health disparities among
underserved and marginalized populations.
• Forging strategic alliances with health-care organizations to
include psychologists in integrated health-care services.
APA has also made significant progress on its Good
Governance Project, which involves a team of 15 APA members,
staff and consultants who are taking a close look at APA’s
governance structure to ensure that we have the best system in
place for the 21st century. The team has devoted much of this
year to collecting data from members about APA’s operations. It
hopes to present proposals to APA’s board and council by August.
In addition, APA President Melba J. T. Vasquez, PhD, has
been working with APA on three initiatives that could have a
significant impact on contemporary society. One is to better
understand educational disparities and use psychology’s expertise
to reduce them. Another is shedding light on the psychological
effects of immigration. The third initiative examines the cause
and effects of discrimination, prejudice and bias.
On Capitol Hill, APA has been working to ensure that the
new health-care reform law advances psychology practice
and increases patient access to psychological and behavioral
health services. APA and APAPO have been focused on
including psychologists in integrated health-care models;
supporting outreach to state psychological associations
working for health-care reform; expanding insurance
coverage for mental and behavioral health services; and
securing compensation for psychologists in Medicare, among
many other priorities.
This year, for the first time, APA journal articles were
published online first through APA’s PsycARTICLES database,
allowing psychologists access to new research within as few
as 30 days after an article is accepted for publication. APA
journal articles are also now available through a mobile app.
In September, APA released two new databases. Psyc TESTS
( www.apa.org/pubs/databases/psyctests), which provides access
to complete psychological tests and other assessments, and
Psyc THERAPY ( www.apa.org/pubs/databases/psyctherapy),
a database of streaming therapy demonstrations featuring
clinicians working with participants. This fall, we launched
digital versions of APA’s magazines — the Monitor and
gradPSYCH — giving members immediate access and expanded
APA’s four directorates – Education, Science, Practice and
Public Interest – have also made progress on key fronts. The
Education Directorate quadrupled its online continuing-education courses this year. The Science Directorate worked
steadfastly on having psychology accepted as a STEM science
and on psychology and global climate change. The Practice
Directorate was central to APA’s efforts to implement health
care reform and develop the profession’s first treatment
guidelines (see page 18). The Public Interest Directorate has
focused on immigration and on the effect of discrimination,
prejudice and bias.
The past year has been a busy one for APA, and we look
forward to working with members in 2012 to forge ahead with
efforts to make psychology stronger for generations to come. n