As the impact of COVID-19 is being felt worldwide, we recognize the pressure this evolving crisis is placing on educators, teachers, supervisors and practitioners of psychology throughout Canada. On behalf of the CPA, we extend our gratitude for the leadership roles so many of you are playing in your communities and your efforts to address the needs of your colleagues, students and patients.
To support your efforts, and to inform the public, we have compiled and created a variety of resources. We and are also working with our partners and other associations to advocate for, not only on behalf of our members, but also for members of the Canadian public.
- FACT SHEETS. Thanks to Dr. Steven Taylor, we have prepared a new Psychology Works COVID-19 fact sheet, and created a page on our the CPA website for all important updates related to the virus – https://cpa.ca/corona-virus/. Many thanks as well to CPA’s Health Psychology Section for their contributions. Both the fact sheet and web page continue to evolve as we receive new information. We suggest regularly checking in with our CPA website as it will continue to be updated as the situation evolves, and new information is shared.
- In addition to the fact sheet on coping with COVID-19, already posted at the link above, three more are in the works – one on working at home with children, the psychological impacts of COVID-19, and resources related to telepsychology. We hope to have these posted imminently at https://cpa.ca/corona-virus/
- LIABILITY INSURANCE. CPA’s leadership is working with our liability insurance broker (BMS) and the insurance program’s preferred legal provider (Gowling WLG) to address members’ logistic concerns about the impact of COVID-19 on psychological practice. An information document has been prepared by BMS and is available here https://cpa.ca/docs/File/Insurance/COVID-19_Position%20Statement_CPA%20CPAP%20March%2019%202020.pdf
- In addition, BMS and Gowling WLG have prepared an article on telepsychology practice which we will post imminently at https://cpa.ca/corona-virus/. Next week, BMS and Gowling WLG will also deliver a webinar to psychologists on the impact of COVID-19 on psychological practice. Any policy holder – member of CPA or a member of a provincial and territorial association – who has a question they would like BMS and Gowlings to address in the webinar, please email firstname.lastname@example.org by Monday, March 23, 2020. Details about the date and time of the webinar, and how to join it, will be sent to the membership, and posted at https://cpa.ca/corona-virus/, as soon as the details are confirmed.
- PRACTICE MANAGEMENT. The membership has long known that CPA has been developing a Practice Management Platform partnership to enable our members to communicate securely with their patients, deliver tele-psychology services and maintain electronic health records. The agreements to support this partnership are nearly complete and, in light of COVID-19 and the need for psychology providers to find other than in-person means of delivering services, CPA’s leadership is doing all it can to expedite the launch of the partnership.
- ACCREDITATION. CPA’s Accreditation Panel has been working with its partners at APA, ASPPB, CCPPP and ACPRO to address the impact that COVID-19 will have on training experiences and program completion of students and interns. CPA’s Accreditation Panel will soon issue a statement on this topic.
- CONVENTION 2020. We know that many of you are wondering about the status of our 2020 CPA Convention in Montreal. A decision about proceeding or cancelling the convention should be made shortly. We ask for your understanding as this decision will be taken with the safety of delegates and staff considered first and foremost. We will update our membership as soon as a decision is taken.
- ORGANIZATIONS FOR HEALTH ACTION. CPA sits on the Management Committee of Organizations for Health Action (HEAL) who have collectively written to the Federal Minister of Health offering our collective voice and assistance. HEAL represents 650,000 of Canada’s health care providers. We will shortly be undertaking a survey of our member organizations to ensure that the experiences of health practitioners and researchers are shared with government and decision-makers. CPA would really like to hear from you – if you have issues, concerns, suggestions about COVID-19 and the science, practice or education of psychology, please let us know at email@example.com; please put COVID-19 in the subject line. We will share the results of the survey of health provider associations as soon as these are available.
- CPA STAFF. Here at our Head Office, we are working alongside many Canadians to flatten the curve of COVID-19 transmission by working from home. We continue to do the same work we normally do, with tele-work protocols in place.
- MEDIA. In addition, we are reaching out to the media to help accentuate the unique expertise psychologists bring to the current crisis. Many of our members have been interviewed in dozens of media outlets across the country and around the world including the Globe and Mail, CTV, CBC, Global News and the National Post.
- APA. The APA has shared some resources to ensure that psychologists have the tools and support that is needed. They have developed new guidance onhow to protect your patients and your practice as well as an office and technology checklist for telepsychological services.
We can see the medical and physical impact COVID-19 is having around the world, but the full extent of the psychological impact is not yet known. Our discipline and profession have much to contribute.
Thank you all for your leadership and your guidance. Stay safe and stay healthy. Any questions or concerns, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr. Ian R. Nicholson, C.Psych.
K.R. Cohen Ph.D., C. Psych.
Chief Executive Officer