CPA’s “Psychology Works” Fact Sheets responding to COVID-19

The CPA has produced a series of Fact Sheets in response to the coronavirus pandemic:

  • Why Does Culture Matter to COVID-19? – PDF | HTML 06/04/2020
  • Grief, Bereavement and COVID-19 – PDF | HTML 05/12/2020
  • Research Funding Information as relates to COVID-19 – PDF | HTML 05/08/2020
  • Guidance for Psychology Students as Relates to COVID-19 – PDF | HTML 05/08/2020
  • Guidance for Psychology Faculty and Researchers as Relates to COVID-19 – PDF | HTML 05/08/2020
  • Emotional and Psychological Challenges Faced by Frontline Health Care Providers During the COVID-19 Pandemic – PDF | HTML 04/07/2020
  • Psychological Practice and the Coronavirus (COVID-19) – PDF | HTML 03/18/2020
  • Student Wellness and COVID-19 – PDF | HTML 04/02/2020
  • Helping Teens Cope with the Impacts of and Restrictions Related to COVID-19 – PDF | HTML 03/31/2020
  • Psychological Impacts of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) – PDF | HTML 03/20/2020
  • Working from Home During COVID-19, With and Without Children – PDF | HTML 03/17/2020
  • Coping With and Preventing COVID-19 – PDF | HTML 04/04/2020

You can find all of our “Psychology Works” Fact Sheets here

Strong Majority of Canadians Want Improved Access to Psychologists

CPA LogoCPAP logo

Strong Majority of Canadians Want Improved Access to Psychologists

January 5, 2021 (Ottawa) – Canada and countries throughout the world increasingly recognize the importance of mental health to the success of their citizens, economies and societies.  The COVID-19 pandemic has placed a significant burden on our mental health and wellbeing, making the need for timely access to mental health care even more urgent.

The Canadian Psychological Association (CPA) and the Council of Professional Associations of Psychologists (CPAP) asked Nanos Research to survey over 3,000 Canadians to better understand how they perceive the role of psychologists, the barriers and solutions to accessing care, and the quality of care they receive.

“This survey shines a light on the importance Canadians place on their mental health and the value they place on psychologists in helping people address their mental health problems”, said Dr. Karen Cohen, CEO, CPA.  “Canadians are clear that Canada needs innovative and sustainable solutions across the public and private sectors that will improve timely access to evidence-based mental health care for people who need it”.

“The need for additional investments to care for those with mental health and substance use problems has never been more acute”, said Mr. Christopher Cameron, CPAP Executive Director.  “More specialized and individual care will be needed by those Canadians with pre-existing mental health conditions and by those who develop them as a result of COVID-19”.

The survey found:

Barriers to Access Care

  • 78% of Canadians report that psychological services costing too much for them to pay for themselves is a very significant (52%) or somewhat significant (26%) barrier.
  • 73% of Canadians say that the services of psychologists are not being covered by provincial/territorial health plans is a very significant (47%) or significant (26%) barrier.
  • 68% of Canadians say wait times to see a psychologist being too long is a very significant (35%) or somewhat significant (33%) barrier.
  • 66% of Canadians say that psychological services not being covered by their employer’s health benefit plan is a very significant (40%) or somewhat significant (26%) barrier.
  • 46% of Canadians say that preferring to deal with these problems/disorders on their own is a very significant (16%) or somewhat significant (30%) barrier.
  • 39% of Canadians say not wanting others to know they are seeing a psychologist is a very significant (14%) or somewhat significant (25%) barrier.

Solutions to Improve Access to Care

  • Almost 9 out of 10 Canadians (57%) support or somewhat support (31%) improving access to psychologists through the publicly-funded health care system.
  • 83% of Canadians say psychologists working collaboratively with other health professionals, such as a family physician in primary care teams, is a very good idea (50%) or good idea (33%).
  • 76% of Canadians think that better access (more funded mental health care services and higher financial caps) to psychologists through their employer health benefit plan is a very good idea (42%) or good idea (34%).

A majority of Canadians perceive psychologists as being effective in helping people with specific mental health problems like depression, anxiety, learning disabilities, dementia, addiction, and the stress of being diagnosed with a disease.  Canadians also perceive psychologists as being effective in diagnosing people with mental health problems like depression, anxiety, learning disabilities, dementia and addiction.

The COVID-19 pandemic has reached beyond our physical health and we are likely to feel its psychological and social impacts for some time to come.  We must invest and protect our most valuable assets…people.  There is no health without mental health.  The CPA is committed to working collaboratively with all levels of government, employers and insurers to ensure that Canadians receive evidence-based care where, and when, they need it.  The time to act is now.

To review the results in detail – which includes a breakdown by provinces and territories, gender and age, please to the CPA’s website:

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About the CPA

The Canadian Psychological Association is the national voice for the science, practice and education of psychology in the service of the health and welfare of Canadians.  The CPA is Canada’s largest association for psychology and represents psychologists in public and private practice, university educators and researchers, as well as students.  Psychologists are the country’s largest group of regulated and specialized mental health providers, making our profession a key resource for the mental health treatment Canadians need.

About CPAP

The Council of Professional Associations of Psychologists is comprised of 13 national, provincial and territorial psychology associations, and has four objectives: facilitating knowledge exchange amongst member associations; identify and share best practices amongst member associations; advocating for the needs of Canadian psychologists and the people that they support; and develop leadership potential and capacity in Canadian psychologists.

About the Survey

Nanos Research conducted a representative online survey of 3,070 Canadians, drawn from a non-probability panel between September 25th and October 2nd, 2020.  The results were statistically checked and weighted by age and gender using the latest Census information and the sample is geographically stratified to be representative of Canada.  The research was commissioned by the Canadian Psychological Association and was conducted by Nanos Research.

Contact: Mr. Eric Bollman
Communications Specialist
Canadian Psychological Association
(613) 853-1061 853-1061

To view the national survey results, click HERE.

Provincial/Territorial Survey Results:

Pandemic December: How to stay connected and resilient in a COVID-19 holiday season

This year’s holiday season will no doubt be different. The holidays are already a time of increased mental health risks because of anxiety, depression, seasonal affective disorder, alcohol/substance use and other factors. Now, the COVID-19 pandemic will add a major pressure to the festive season.

Whether you mark holidays in December or not, typical winter customs are being disrupted. The pandemic has had a significant impact on society’s ability to connect and has also reduced individuals’ access to wellness-maintaining strategies and activities. …

Read the full article by Kerri Ritchie and Caroline Gerin-Lajoie here: (

Psychological Strategies for Wearing Masks – APNL Press Release

August 18, 2020 – APNL Press Release:

Psychological Strategies for Wearing Masks

The NL government recently announced the mandatory wearing of masks in all public spaces for individuals over the age of 5.  While some individuals have been routinely wearing masks for many months, either as part of their work, or while running errands, for many this will be a new, and somewhat uncomfortable situation.  Fortunately, Psychologists can help!  Becoming accustomed to wearing a mask is just like making any other kind of behavioural change.


Click here for the Press Release (PDF)

Pandemic Parenting

Pandemic Parenting 

A platform where experts can share free science-based knowledge, experience, and resources. Our goal is to build a supportive, informed community for all who care for or work with children and seek information about how to make the tough decisions ahead while coping with pandemic-related stress.

Free upcoming webinars:

You can learn more about Pandemic Parenting on our website, by following us on FacebookTwitter, or Instagram, or by subscribing to the Pandemic Parenting email list. Feel free to share with loved ones, colleagues, and clients. 

Dr. Lindsay Malloy and Dr. Amanda Zelechoski

Psychological First Aid for Frontline Health Care Providers During COVID-19: A Quick Guide to Wellness

Prepared by
Dr. Mélanie Joanisse, C.Psych.
Clinical and Health Psychologist

Psychological First Aid for Frontline Health Care Providers During COVID-19: A Quick Guide to Wellness (PDF)

Disclaimer: the tools provided in this workbook are not intended to be viewed as a replacement for psychological services provided by a trained professional. Please seek professional help if needed.

CDC: Use of Cloth Face Coverings to Help Slow the Spread of COVID-19

CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies), especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.

CDC also advises the use of simple cloth face coverings to slow the spread of the virus and help people who may have the virus and do not know it from transmitting it to others. Cloth face coverings fashioned from household items or made at home from common materials at low cost can be used as an additional, voluntary public health measure.

Use of Cloth Face Coverings during Pandemic: Wearing, Maintaining and Making Cloth Face Coverings

CPA Members Leading an International Study on Awareness, Attitudes, Impacts and Behaviors related to COVID-19: Please complete the Phase 2 survey!

The Montreal Behavioural Medicine Centre (, along with international team of over 150 researchers from more than 40 countries around the world, are trying to assess the public perceptions, attitudes, concerns, and responses to the various measures put in place to prevent or reduce the spread of COVID-19. The study, led by Dr. Kim Lavoie (UQAM, CIUSSS-NIM) and Simon Bacon (Concordia University, CIUSSS-NIM) in collaboration with several CPA members from across Canada, will link the survey to policy and case data from around the world to estimate the effectiveness and impacts of current strategies used to ‘flatten the curve’ of COVID-19. 

Thanks to your help, we received over 35,000 responses for phase 1! (see preliminary result updates here:

To find out more information or to take the Phase 2 survey (which is available in multiple languages), please go to:

Joint Technical Briefing Request – COVID-19 Economic Response Plan

The Extended Healthcare Professionals Coalition (EHPC) has sent a Joint Technical Briefing Request – COVID-19 Economic Response Plan to William Francis Morneau, Minister of Finance.

“This is a an urgent request, on behalf of the Extended Healthcare Professionals Coalition (EHPC) that represents 11 national professional health and social organizations, for a joint technical briefing on the newly introduced programs for businesses, employers and individuals as part of the COVID-19 Economic Response Plan to help mitigate the economic impact of the outbreak….”

Click here to read the full Letter

Version français ici

Resources for Managing COVID-19 Anxiety: CPA Traumatic Stress Section

In these unprecedented times, the CPA Traumatic Stress Section executive wanted to reach out with a document of resources for managing COVID-19 anxiety. This document includes online resources including apps and media interviews, as well as potential strategies for managing COVID-19 cognitive distortions and other tips for managing mental wellness.

We hope you find them helpful and that you and your loved ones are keeping safe,
The CPA-TSS executive

  • CPA Traumatic Stress Section: Resources for Managing COVID-19 Anxiety.
  • CPA Members Leading an International Study on Awareness, Attitudes, and Behaviors related to COVID-19

    We hope you are healthy and coping as well as possible with the current COVID-19 pandemic. The virus has rapidly spread around the globe, and health authorities have been struggling to slow the spread of infection to protect people and healthcare resources.

    The Montreal Behavioural Medicine Centre ( – which is affiliated with the University of Quebec at Montreal and Concordia University in Canada, has assembled an international team of over 100 researchers more than 20 countries around the world to assess public perceptions and responses to the various measures put in place to prevent or reduce the spread of COVID-19.

    To do this, please complete a short 20-minute online survey about COVID-19. Your participation will contribute to better understanding the global and collective response to the COVID-19 outbreak, which may be used to improve current and future preventive strategies. Your participation is voluntary and your responses will be completely anonymous.

    To complete the survey, please click on the following link, which will take you to the survey’s main website. The survey is available in a number of different languages:

    In the future, you may receive another invitation to complete this survey, as it will be sent out every month until health authorities and governments remove the preventive measures (e.g., social distancing).

    Please share this message with as many of your personal and professional contacts and networks as possible. The more people that complete the survey, the more we learn about how to reduce the spread and impact of COVID-19.

    If you have any questions about the study, please contact the team through the project email:

    Joint statement from APA, CPA, APPIC, and ASPPB regarding the impact of COVID-19 on psychology training in North America.

    Education & Training in Health Service Psychology – COVID-19 – Joint Statement Updated 3-19-2020

    The Association of Psychology Postdoctoral and Internship Centers (APPIC), the American Psychological Association (APA), the Canadian Psychological Association (CPA) and the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards (ASPPB) have received questions and concerns from programs and students concerned about how COVID-19 will impact their training experiences and if it will impact their completion of degree requirements. The range of ever-changing information, sometimes conflicting, from different organizations in which psychology graduate students train throughout the U.S. and Canada has contributed to increasing anxiety.

    The purpose of this communication is to provide information coordinated by APPIC, APA, CPA, and ASPPB about how information will be shared as it becomes available. The community should expect further updates as this situation continues to develop, and public health guidelines are clarified by various agencies. We will continue to review updates from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC). We anticipate that COVID-19 will impact the ability of some students to complete their internship/residency requirements, as psychological services will be disrupted, and further travel regulations will result in postponed training and education in psychology as well as other health professions. This impact will affect internships and postdoctoral fellowships, as well as information about accreditation and licensure. We intend to continue to update programs as this situation evolves, prioritizing student, faculty, and patient safety.

    We recognize that programs may need to employ varying approaches and strategies that are influenced by individual institutional policies and procedures; local, state or provincial/territorial, and federal regulations; and possible variations in the spread of COVID-19. Licensing boards and colleges have to respond to jurisdictional requirements; as an accrediting agency recognized by the USDE (US Department of Education) and CHEA (Council of Higher Education Accreditation), the APA’s Commission on Accreditation (CoA) is charged with upholding minimum standards such that the public is assured that accredited psychology education and training programs conform to that which is delineated in the APA Standards of Accreditation; CPA’s Standards and Procedures need to enable accredited institutions to meet the provisions of their provincial/territorial degree granting authority and membership in Universities Canada. APPIC relies on its programs to ensure that ALL graduates meet the requirements, but also encourages programs to be flexible when possible and to follow institutional guidelines and employment rules typically controlled by individual sites regarding leave time.

    APPIC, the APA’s Commission on Accreditation and CPA’s Accreditation Panel believe that program faculty and supervisors are in the best position to make decisions during training about trainee competence, including psychological intervention and assessment. and we trust that performance requirements set by programs will be effective in assessing trainee competence and safety.

    Next Steps:

    For everyone, although we cannot issue a blank statement that will cover all training sites and all regulatory boards, rest assured that we – APA, CPA, APPIC, APA CoA (Commission on Accreditation), and CPA Commission on Accreditation Panel– are working with our programs to be flexible, and we are

    working with ASPPB and psychology regulatory boards to stay in communication and updated through this time. For up-to-date information about licensure jurisdiction-by-jurisdiction, visit the ASPPB website ( that is updated daily as new information is available.

    We recognize that this is a stressful time for all stakeholders involved in education and training. Our organizations have staff who are available to assist you as situations arise. Please contact the appropriate agency with your questions, and please understand that there might not be immediate answers to some questions. We will do our best to give you updates as we learn more facts that impact training and licensure.