2021 Practice Leadership Conference

COVID-19 Recovery and the Future of Practice
2021 Practice Leadership Conference

March 5–7, 2021
March 14–15, 2021

Please join us March 5–7 and March 14–15 for the Practice Leadership Conference (PLC), APA’s annual invitation-only event designed to strengthen the profession and give state leaders in psychology additional tools and resources to advocate for issues important to the field.

Attendance is free for invitees and we ask that you register today so we can begin scheduling your virtual Capitol Hill visits with your members of Congress.


Register now


Due to COVID-19, this year’s PLC will be 100% virtual but we’re working together to take advantage of a unique situation that allows us to:

  • Meet on different days — In 2021, we are spanning our PLC event across two concurrent weeks: March 5–7 and March 14–15. This will mean less disruption of your weekday work schedule, the ability to dive deeper into topics, and the flexibility to give attendees more time to prepare for advocacy meetings.
  • Engage in new and different ways — Although we would love to meet face to face, COVID-19 makes that impossible. Our two-part virtual event will still provide many opportunities for networking. We are also expanding our Advocacy efforts with an ongoing series of summits that give you more opportunities to advocate for the issues that matter to you, the profession of psychology, and society as a whole. APA’s 2021 Advocacy Summit series kicks off with the PLC Advocacy Summit on Telehealth and Health Equity on March 14–15.
  • Bring in different voices — We expect that a fully virtual format will enable more members of your team and more early career professionals, students, and diversity representatives to attend PLC. To strengthen our collective voice and impact, we are also welcoming psychologists from across the profession with expertise in telehealth and health equity to this year’s PLC Advocacy Summit and look to our state leaders to shape the way we incorporate these new voices for maximum impact.

Although some things will be new this year, this remains unchanged: your leadership, expertise, and voice are critical to achieving our shared goals. We value your input as we work collectively to make this year’s PLC—and future PLC events—a success.

We hope youll join us.

Agenda

Friday, March 5

6–8 p.m. ET

Opening Session and Welcome Reception

Sponsored by American Professional Agency

  • Jennifer F. Kelly, PhD, APA President
  • Arthur C. Evans, Jr., PhD, Chief Executive Officer and Executive Vice President
  • Jared L. Skillings, PhD, ABPP, Chief of Professional Practice
  • Katherine B. McGuire, MSc, Chief Advocacy Officer
Saturday, March 6

10:45–11:45 a.m. ET

Breakfast Lounges

  1. Presidents
  2. Presidents Elect
  3. CESPPA
  4. DPAs
  5. FACs
  6. Diversity Delegates
  7. APAGS
  8. ECPs
  9. Other SPTA BOD members
  10. APA Governance members

11:45 a.m.–noon ET

Break

Noon–1 p.m. ET

Learn, Build, and Grow: Strategies for Making Health Equity Part of a Successful Practice (1 CE*)

The COVID-19 pandemic has laid bare the systemic injustices that contribute to health disparities affecting communities of color, older adults, and individuals with disabilities, among others. This session will examine the vital role psychologists play in dismantling barriers to health equity in the COVID-19 era and beyond. The panelists will discuss realistic and pragmatic ways to build and maintain a successful practice that effectively serves diverse populations. They will discuss how to build your own cultural competence and strengthen your therapeutic relationship with clients from marginalized communities. They will touch on how practitioners can build meaningful partnerships with other health providers to better serve diverse clients. Lastly, they will discuss how recent expansions in telehealth due to COVID-19 could lower barriers to access to mental health care for underserved communities.


Panelists:
Jennifer F. Kelly, PhD (2021 APA President)
Bravada Garrett-Akinsanya, PhD
Terry Gock, PhD, MPA
Geoffrey M. Reed, PhD

1–1:10 p.m. ET

Presentation of Division 31 SPTA Diversity Award

This award recognizes innovation, accomplishment, and ongoing activities related to diversity in membership, governance and leadership, and programming.


Recipient:
Massachusetts Psychological Association

1:10–1:45 p.m. ET

Networking Lounges

Attendees are welcome to eat a meal or snack and enjoy the discussion. The lounges are open so that people can come and go as they please.

  1. Continuing the Discussion (continuation of previous session)
  2. Innovation Station – leading practices around an SPTA project or issue
  3. State Legislative Lounge – discussion of hot issues
  4. So, You Want to be the President? – leadership development and mentoring
  5. Freestyle Lounge – just come hang out and get to know your colleagues
  6. Word on the Street – issues members are talking about the most
  7. Sponsor Spotlight: American Professional Agency – questions about professional liability insurance coverages and services? We have the answers!
  8. Sponsor Spotlight: American Board of Professional Psychology – speak with an ABPP Representative

1:45–2 p.m. ET

Break

2–3 p.m. ET

Medicare’s Impact on Private Payers and State Medicaid Programs: Why All Psychologists Should Engage in CMS Advocacy (1 CE*)

The United States health care system and the financing for the delivery of health care services has changed significantly during the past year. The COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE) and Medicare policy have been two primary drivers for change. Medicare policy not only impacts Medicare, but also state Medicaid programs and private payers. Despite this fact, most psychologists do not actively engage in APA’s CMS/Medicare advocacy efforts. This lack of participation directly impacts APA and SPTA’s ability to influence payment policy across all payers at both the state and federal level. This panel will discuss the relationship between Medicare Policy and Medicaid and private payer policy regarding CPT code access, reimbursement rates, and telehealth. In addition, panel members will share their unique perspective on this issue from their roles as a hospital administrator, Medicaid administrator, and director of professional affairs. Attendees will have the opportunity to engage in discussion with panel members regarding strategies to educate psychologists about the impact of CMS/Medicare policy and how to increase psychologists engagement in CMS/Medicare advocacy efforts.


Panelists:
Stephen R. Gillaspy, PhD
Peter D. Liggett, PhD
Lori J. Stark, PhD
Jim R. Broyles, PhD

3–3:10 p.m. ET

Presentation of Division 31 Awards

SPTA Outstanding Achievement by a Psychological Association Staff Member: This award is given to reward a psychological association staff member for exemplary service.


Recipient:
Keira Boertzel-Smith, JD, Executive Director for the New Jersey Psychological Association.

3:10–3:45 p.m. ET

Networking Lounges

Attendees are welcome to eat a meal or snack and enjoy the discussion. The lounges are open so that people can come and go as they please.

  1. Continuing the Discussion
  2. Innovation Station – leading practices around an SPTA project or issue
  3. State Legislative Lounge – discussion of hot issues
  4. So, You Want to be the President? – leadership development and mentoring
  5. Freestyle Lounge – just come hang out and get to know your colleagues
  6. Word on the Street – issues members are talking about the most
  7. Sponsor Spotlight: American Professional Agency – questions about professional liability insurance coverages and services? We have the answers!
  8. Sponsor Spotlight: American Board of Professional Psychology – speak with an ABPP Representative

3:45–4 p.m. ET

Break

4–5 p.m. ET

The Distinctiveness of the Doctoral Degree

An Assembly on the Value/Distinctiveness of the Doctoral Degree in health service psychology was held January 28–30, 2021. It was the first of several events planned for 2021 to envision the future of practice which will lead to a broader Summit on the Future of Education and Practice. The objective of the Assembly was to create a shared understanding of the value and distinctiveness of the doctoral degree and license by discussing and clearly defining the value and vision of psychology as a profession, the multiple layers and levels of professionals that inform and constitute the profession, and the distinctive contributions of those with a doctoral psychology degree in health service psychology. Attendees of the Practice Leadership Conference 2021 are asked to provide feedback and further refine these ideas as well as to highlight emerging issues as next steps leading to the planned Summit.


Panelists:
Lynn F. Bufka, PhD Senior Director, Practice Transformation and Quality
Mary A. Fernandes, MA, Tri-Chair Practice/Education Steering Committee
Nadya A. Fouad, PhD, ABPP, Tri-Chair Practice/Education Steering Committee
Catherine L. Grus, PhD, Chief Education Officer
Michael L. Hendricks, PhD, ABPP, Tri-Chair Practice/Education Steering Committee

5–5:10 p.m. ET

Outstanding SPTA

This honors an outstanding association for achievements and accomplishments that provide a model for other associations.


Recipient:
Georgia Psychological Association

5:15–5:45 p.m. ET

Open Networking

Sunday, March 7

10:45–11:45 a.m. ET

Breakfast lounges

  1. SPTA Large States
  2. SPTA Medium States
  3. SPTA Small States
  4. APA Governance Members

11:45 a.m.–noon ET

Break

Noon–1:00 p.m. ET

Psychologists as Leaders: An Important Professional Identity for New Challenges Ahead (1 CE*)

The mental and behavioral health of the U.S. public has been deeply impacted by the COVID pandemic—depression, anxiety, racial trauma, opiate abuse, unemployment, and more. As we look increasingly to population health strategies to facilitate healing across the country and across the world, the full range of psychologists’ skills will be required to meet the challenges of 2021 and beyond. This keynote will explain why leadership is a vital skill-set for all psychologists. We will highlight an important leadership model that psychologists can immediately apply. Interactive sessions will allow every participant to consider and discuss how their personal and professional values clarify their identity as a leader. You won’t want to miss this PLC keynote, which is the kick-off of SPTA leadership training and mentoring that APA is envisioning for the future.


Panelists:

Jared L. Skillings, PhD, ABPP, Chief of Professional Practice
Anny Reyes, MS

1:00–1:10 p.m. ET

Presentation of Committee of State Leaders State Leadership Award

This award is given annually to one psychologist who has shown outstanding service to states, provinces, or territories as an officer, committee or task force chair, staff person or member in the state, provincial, or territorial psychological association (SPTA).


Recipeint:

Anne Klee, PhD. Past President, Connecticut Psychological Association

1:10–1:45 p.m. ET

Networking Lounges

Attendees are welcome to eat a meal or snack and enjoy the discussion. The lounges are open so that people can come and go as they please.

  1. Continuing the Discussion
  2. Innovation Station – leading practices around an SPTA project or issue
  3. State Legislative Lounge – discussion of hot issues
  4. So, You Want to be the President? – leadership development and mentoring
  5. Freestyle Lounge – just come hang out and get to know your colleagues
  6. Word on the Street – issues members are talking about the most
  7. Sponsor Spotlight: American Professional Agency – telehealth coverage, cyber liability, and how our policy protects you. Come share your experiences!
  8. Sponsor Spotlight: American Board of Professional Psychology – speak with an ABPP Representative

1:45–2 p.m. ET

Break

2–3 p.m. ET

Recordkeeping, Patient Access, and Other Legal and Risk Management Issues: How the impending Open Notes Rule, proposed HIPAA changes, and the pandemic will impact your practice (1 CE*)

Sponsored by American Professional Agency


On April 5, 2021,the Information Blocking/Open Notes Rule is set to go into effect. This will change how psychologists with sophisticated systems keep records and give patients access to them. Most psychologists with EHRs will need to explain why their EHR doesn’t offer Open Notes access. Additionally, HHS announced proposed changes to the HIPAA Privacy Rule, including shortening the time frame for responding to patient access requests.


Before these recent regulatory changes, the pandemic impacted psychologists’ recordkeeping and consent practices, among other changes. After the pandemic, shifting to the “new normal” will create additional issues. Our panel of legal and risk management experts will walk you through what you need to know, including:

  • Strategies for complying with the Information Blocking Rule in large systems or small practices
  • Level of detail: Lean and mean records or the great American novel?
  • How to record couples / family counseling sessions
  • Outside communication from family members about the patient
  • Actual and proposed changes that may increase the benefits of keeping psychotherapy notes
  • Impact of increased payor audits

Psychologists should walk away with a better understanding of their obligations under the law and the ability to provide good care to their patients in a compliant manner.


Panelists:
Shirley Ann Higuchi, JD
Alan Nessman, JD
Connie Galietti, JD
Deborah C. Baker, JD
Anne Huben-Kearney, RN, BSN, MPA, CPHQ, CPHRM, CPPS, DFASHRM
Allison Funicelli, MPA, CCLA, ARM, CPHRM  

3–3:30 p.m. ET

Networking Lounges

Attendees are welcome to eat a meal or snack and enjoy the discussion. The lounges are open so that people can come and go as they please.


  1. Continuing the Discussion
  2. Innovation Station – leading practices around an SPTA project or issue
  3. State Legislative Lounge – discussion of hot issues
  4. So, You Want to be the President? – leadership development and mentoring
  5. Freestyle Lounge – just come hang out and get to know your colleagues
  6. Word on the Street – issues members are talking about the most
  7. Sponsor Spotlight: American Professional Agency – telehealth coverage, cyber liability, and how our policy protects you. Come share your experiences!
  8. Sponsor Spotlight: American Board of Professional Psychology – speak with an ABPP Representative

3:30–3:45 p.m. ET

Break

3:45–4:45 p.m. ET

COVID as a Catalyst: Propelling Digital Mental Health Technology into the Future (1 CE*)

The health care landscape was changing in significant ways prior to the current COVID-19 pandemic situation and, of course, rapid changes have occurred in response to it as the provider population shifted to telehealth. Professional practitioners will continue to need resources, products, and government policies that support their practice to evolve and innovate as the healthcare landscape continues to change.


This session will focus on the growing interest in digital therapeutics in mental and behavioral health. Presenters will begin with an overview of digital health products including what digital therapeutics are and are not, and will move into deeper discussion of the potential opportunities and concerns or unintended consequences, specifically for practicing psychologists. Panelists will describe APA’s strategic approach for addressing digital therapeutics in mental and behavioral health care including efforts around reimbursement, regulation and advocacy, member education, and the marketplace.


Chair: Nicole Owings-Fonner, MA
Presenters:
Megan Coder, PharmD, MBA
C. Vaile Wright, PhD
Deborah C. Baker, JD  

4:45–5 p.m. ET

Break

5–6 p.m. ET

APA President and CEO Plenary

6–7 p.m. ET

Psychology PAC Donor Reception

Join us for an interactive Psychology PAC reception. Your voluntary contributions support members of Congress working to advance telehealth, reimbursement rate, and health equity policies affecting psychologists and the people they serve. (This is a ticketed event. Invitations to follow.)


The American Psychological Association, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, does not participate in these activities and does not solicit contributions for the Psychology PAC.

Sunday, March 14

10:45–11 a.m. ET

Welcoming Remarks

  • Jennifer F. Kelly, PhD, APA President
  • Katherine B. McGuire, MSc, Chief Advocacy Officer

11 a.m.–noon ET

Lesson Learned: Navigating a 50/50 Senate

For just the third time in U.S. history, the U.S. Senate will be evenly divided. With a global pandemic and its economic fallout still looming, and the necessity to quickly stand up the new Biden administration, a functional Senate is an imperative. While the vice president breaks voting ties under the Constitution, many serious questions remain as to how the Senate and its committees will operate day-to-day, with potentially enormous implications for the nation.

Former Senate Majority Leaders Tom Daschle and Trent Lott, the last Senate leaders to govern a 50-50 chamber, will provide an inside look at how they came to a power-sharing agreement to lead the country through challenging times—and how those lessons could be applied now.


Moderator:
Katherine B. McGuire, MS, Chief Advocacy Officer, APA


Speakers:
Former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle
Former Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott

Noon–12:45 p.m. ET

Using Psychological Science to Engage Across the Aisle

U.S. political polarization has deepened over the past decades, threatening the functioning of our democracy and the flow of the policymaking process. Nevertheless, issues of importance to psychologists and their patients have historically enjoyed bipartisan support and continuing this pattern will both improve our chances of gaining legislative victories and provide an opportunity for cross-party collaboration.

Bridging the political divide is more important today than ever. Psychological research has important insights on how to communicate effectively on policy issues with individuals regardless of where they fall on the political spectrum. In this session a panel of psychologist experts on political identity and communication will share their perspectives, in a discussion moderated by APA Chief Advocacy Officer Katherine McGuire. The session will provide attendees with useful tools for both advocating with members of Congress in Monday’s meetings, and for engaging with family members, friends, neighbors, colleagues and others in the months ahead.


Moderator:
Chuck Hollister, PhD, Chief Executive Officer, Missouri Psychological Association

Panelists:
Katherine B. McGuire, MSc, Chief Advocacy Officer
Kirk Schneider, PhD, President of the Existential-Humanistic Institute (EHI), adjunct faculty at Saybrook University and Teachers College, Columbia University
Tania Israel, PhD, Professor in the Department of Counseling, Clinical, and School Psychology University of California, Santa Barbara

12:45–1 p.m. ET

Break

1–1:45 p.m. ET

Everyday Advocacy: Make it a Habit

As in years past, the Practice Leadership Conference will culminate in a day of attendee visits with their members of Congress to advocate in support of key legislative priorities for our association. But as important as Monday’s lobbying visits are, it is what psychologists do the other 364 days of the year that will make the most difference. Effective advocacy is everyday advocacy: cultivating relationships through consistent engagement with local, state, and federal policymakers and community stakeholders. A panel of psychologist advocacy leaders will share how they have developed this habit, and the strategies and steps they use to build a foundation for success.


Moderator:
Kathleen S. Brown, PhD, Chair, APASI Advocacy Coordinating Committee 

Panelists:
Maysa Akbar, PhD, ABPP, APA Chief Diversity Office
Arlene Noriega, PhD, Div. 44 Representative to APA Council of Representatives, APA Fellow, Member-At-Large, APA Council Leadership Team
Nadika Paranamana, MA, APASI Advocacy Coordinating Committee, Chair, APAGS Advocacy Coordinating Team, Connecticut Psychological Association Student Representative

1:45–2:15 p.m. ET

Advocacy Skills Labs

  1. VoterVoice Users Discussion 
  2. Advocating for RxP 
  3. The Psychology PAC and You 
  4. Adding Social Media to Your Advocacy Toolkit

2:15–3 p.m. ET

Issue Briefing and Lobbying Visit Role Playing

This session will prepare attendees for advocating with their members of Congress on Monday, March 15 on two issues to advance health equity. This will include expanding access to telehealth services—including audio-only services—for the provision of mental health care for Medicare patients. We will also ask members of Congress to support increased funding for key psychology workforce programs: the Graduate Psychology Education (GPE) program, which supports the interprofessional training and placement of psychologists who specialize in working with underserved populations or in communities with shortages of mental and behavioral health providers; and the Minority Fellowship Program, which supports training for psychologists to improve mental and behavioral health outcomes for people from diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds. This session will also provide guidance for PLC attendees on effectively raising other issues with congressional offices that are distinct from APA’s advocacy agenda.

All PLC attendees who will participate in Hill visits should attend this briefing, which will be followed by break-out sessions for each state’s delegation to plan their discussions with members of Congress.


Panelists:
Laurel Stine, JD, MA, Senior Director of Congressional and Federal Relations and Partnerships
Alix Ginsberg, MPH, Senior Director of Congressional and Federal Relations
Serena Dávila, JD, Senior Director of Congressional and Federal Relations

3–3:15 p.m. ET

How to Use Soapbox/GoTo Meeting

Presenter: Christopher Kush, Soapbox Consulting

3:15–4:15 p.m. ET

State Delegation Lobbying Visit Preparation

4:15–4:30 p.m. ET

Break

4:30–5 p.m. ET

Advocacy Skills Labs

  1. Lobbying Visit Issue Q&A 
  2. Advocating for PsyPACT 
  3. Coalition Building in Your Community 
  4. Building Relationships with Legislators and Staff

5–6 p.m. ET

Advocacy Awards

Recognizing Psychology’s Congressional and Grassroots Champions

APA will recognize Senator Angus King (I-ME), Senator Todd Young (R-IN), and Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ-12) as Congressional Champions.

Monday, March 15

9 a.m.–6 p.m. ET

Virtual Lobbying Visits

  • APA Advocacy staff, Soapbox Consulting

12–6 p.m. ET

Debriefing Happy Hour

* Select sessions at this conference have been reviewed and approved by the American Psychological Association’s (APA) Office Continuing Education in Psychology (CEP) to offer Continuing Education (CE) credit for psychologists. Full attendance is required at the approved sessions for which you are claiming CE credit. Partial credit is not awarded. The CEP office maintains responsibility for the content of the CE program.

Thank You to Our PLC 2021 Sponsors

American Professional Agency

ABPP Logo