Dear Clinical Psychologist
Since 2012 a group of concerned Clinical Psychologist has been actively involved in promoting our profession. After many meetings with various stakeholders, the Clinical Psychology Forum came into being. Healthman, an organisation prominent in the administration of most medical specialists groups, were contracted to assist in the CPF in gaining access to various role players in the broader field of health care.
With the support of Healthman, we have been able to resolve various claim related issues for our members. We actively supported our members in resolving issues with medical schemes and have attended various meetings with our members at the schemes. The majority of our members have joined the CPF due to the overt marginalization of Clinical Psychology and the impact this has on their practices. Last year we had 4 meetings (Cape Town and Pretoria) with all our members, for which attending members received 4 ethic points.
The CPF is in the process of developing a claims protocol that would assist our members in private practice with a more consistent and streamlined claims process. We are gathering information to ascertain what the perception is that medical schemes have of Clinical Psychological services, for example, what psychological disorders would they reimburse? The number of therapy sessions per patient? The CPF’s priority is to meet with those medical schemes that undervalue our contribution in the treatment of mental disorders.
Through Healthman CPF members have direct access to claim and payment queries. We are developing a claims protocol that would enable our members to be certain that the claims will get paid and trying to streamline processes like PMb’s and minimum benefits, etc. This process runs parallel to the CPF’s main mission to force the acknowledgement of Clinical Psychology as a distinct profession in mental healthcare and a specialized scope of practice. It is clear that Clinical Psychology needs to be acknowledged by the private sector as a profession before psychology as a whole will accept the scope of practice for Clinical Psychology.
If you are a Clinical Psychologist and you are worried about your profession, please join the CPF. For the first time Clinical Psychology has a forum that will actually do something for the profession. Ask yourself, who negotiated psychology’s fee increase for 2013? The medical schemes made decision based on previous years, seeing none of our professional bodies could bother to negotiate on our behalf. For the Clinical Psychologist to negotiate fees with medical schemes, we need support. Clinical Psychology needs a wake up and smell the medicine! Nobody is looking after the interest of Clinical Psychology, and if for example, PSSYSA can proof they have, we will stand corrected.
You as a Clinical Psychologist have to realise, if Clinical Psychology wants to be a sustainable profession that provides a livelihood to the practitioner and guarantees proper patient care, you will have to consider joining the CPF. The reality is as simple as: It is now or never for Clinical Psychology. Please visit the CPF website for further details on www.clinicalpsychologyforum.co.za.
Take note that the annual meeting is scheduled for 18 May 2013 in Pretoria and the date in June for Cape Town will follow soon. Members will qualify for 5 Ethic CPD points. Fees for members are free and non-members R800.00. Hope to see you there.