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Featured CE of the Month (July)
House Considers Bill Including Counselor Coverage under Medicare
On July 14th, U.S. House of Representatives leaders introduced H.R. 3200, the "America's Affordable Health Choices Act," a slightly updated version of major healthcare reform legislation developed and released jointly by the three House committees with jurisdiction over the issue. The legislation includes provisions to update and strengthen the Medicare program, and as with the earlier version of the bill, the new version includes language establishing Medicare coverage of mental health services provided by licensed professional counselors.
Inclusion of the counselor coverage provision at the beginning of its journey through the House significantly improves the odds of its adoption as part of broader healthcare reform legislation. ACA President Lynn E. Linde has written to the members of the House committees with jurisdiction over healthcare-the House Ways & Means Committee, the House Energy & Commerce Committee, and the House Education & Labor Committee-to express support for the legislation. Information on the healthcare reform legislation is available at
Mark-up of the legislation is the next step. Counselors are strongly encouraged to contact their Representative to ask them to vote for H.R. 3200, and to support its inclusion of Medicare coverage of licensed professional counselors. You can use ACA's
Contacts are especially needed for members of one of the committees with jurisdiction over healthcare. A list of House and Senate members on healthcare committees, by state, is available on the ACA website at
For more information, contact Scott Barstow at 800-347-6647 x234, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Institute of Medicine Panel Supports Recognition of LPC
An array of presenters expressed support for full recognition of licensed professional counselors (LPC) within the TRICARE program at a recent meeting of an Institute of Medicine (IOM) panel studying the issue. The IOM panel is studying the qualifications, credentials, and expertise of licensed professional counselors in preparation for issuing recommendations on whether or not counselors should be allowed to practice independently under the TRICARE program. The panels will issue its report and accompanying recommendations by the end of this year. Further information on the IOM panel and a link for providing feedback for its consideration is available at
On July 7th, the panel held its second public meeting, hearing testimony from several experts in the areas of military healthcare systems, managed care organizations, veteran's health care services, health services research, in addition to a practicing counselor. The theme from all of the presenters was that licensed professional counselors are well qualified to practice independently within TRICARE. Data was presented showing that licensed professional counselors perform as well as, if not better than, other mental health professionals in terms of satisfaction ratings and rates of disciplinary action.
Chief Professional Officer David Kaplan and Director of Public Policy and Legislation Scott Barstow represented ACA at the meeting. Although the testimony presented on July 7th was supportive and encouraging, it is not necessarily indicative of the panel's position on the issue or the nature of its further deliberations. ACA is continuing to follow the panel's work closely, in coordination with concerned congressional staff.
Worth Reading: NCES Report Focuses on Lingering Achievement Gap
In releasing the National Center for Education Statistics' new report, "Achievement Gaps: How Black and White Students in Public Schools Perform in Mathematics and Reading on the National Assessment of Educational Progress," U.S. Secretary of Education Duncan cited a number of the achievement gap areas and how many students of color remain underserved by a significant number of schools. He added; "We must simultaneously raise the achievement of all students, while closing gaps in achievement between different groups of students. This report shows that this can be done, but the progress has been too slow. The achievement gaps are still too wide, and overall achievement is too low, especially compared to other countries."
Administration Ties Training and Employment to Community College Initiatives
Citing the importance of aligning education and jobs as a vital part of the revitalization of the U.S. economy, President Obama has called for new and expanded initiatives at the nation's community colleges and greater access for students seeking training or retraining. Speaking in mid-July at Macomb Community College in Michigan, a state hit hard by the recession, the President outlined a 10-year plan that would increase postsecondary education graduation rates and more effectively prepare students for the contemporary workforce. Details on the American Association of Community Colleges website.
ASGW Presents New DVD on Diversity-Focused Group Work With Children
Celebrating Cultural Diversity: A Group for Fifth Graders
Led by two experienced facilitators, this new DVD contains a complete recording of a six-session counseling group with fifth-grade students focusing on increasing appreciation of cultural diversity. The tape is designed to generate discussion on topics such as group members' developmental level, the leaders' choice of activities and processing strategies, and issues surrounding the concept of culture within the group. Viewers will be able to observe, analyze, and build on the presentation. Celebrating Cultural Diversity is a useful tool both for counselor educators teaching group work and for school counselors and guidance directors seeking relevant continuing education training materials. An introduction, facilitator processing and planning sessions, and a Viewer's Guide that provides discussion points and additional information are included.
2009 | 4 hours
Dual Relationships Subject of New ACA Podcast
Dr. Rock Cattone, Professor and Coordinator of Doctoral Programs for the Division of Counseling and Family Therapy at the University of Missouri - St. Louis is the featured presenter in ACA Podcast HT009, "The Death of Dual Relationships, or Relationships with Clients, Beneficial vs. Harmful." Dr. Cattone is the author of Counseling Ethics and Decision Making and numerous articles on ethical matters. The 45-minute podcast is now available at no charge to ACA members.
Fast Fact: Adult Depression Influencing 16 Million Children
According to a new report from the National Research Council and the Institute of Medicine, the depression experienced by 7.5 million parents in the U.S. each year may well be placing upwards of 16 million children at risk for adverse health outcomes. Depression in Parents, Parenting, and Children highlights disparities in the prevalence, identification, treatment, and prevention of parental depression among different sociodemographic populations. It also outlines strategies for effective intervention and identifies the need for a more interdisciplinary approach that takes biological, psychological, behavioral, interpersonal, and social contexts into consideration.
Relevant Resource: HHS Releases Cultural Competency E-Learning Program
The U. S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Minority Health (OMH) has released its latest cultural competency E-Learning program, the Cultural Competency Curriculum for Disaster Preparedness and Crisis Response (CCC-DPCR). The program is now available at
ACA 2010 Catalog Heading Your Way
Watch your mailbox for the August issue of Counseling Today which will be sent in a polybag along with the new 2010 Publications Catalog. The annual catalog is packed full of resources for practitioners, students, counselor educators, school counselors, supervisors, and program administrators. A
Free CE Credit for July on Multicultural Issues
The featured free CE credit for July is an ACA book chapter: "When Eagle Speaks: Counseling Native Americans" in Multicultural Issues in Counseling: New Approaches to Diversity, Third Edition edited by Courtland C. Lee. An email was sent to all members on July 1 but you may also
Remember, you do not have to complete the work in the month assigned. You simply need to complete the registration process during the month and then you can take the test whenever you wish. You will not be able to register for previous offerings so we do recommend that you register each month and then work on each CE test at your convenience.
Calendar: NECA, Nebraska and New Mexico to Hold Conferences
ACA divisions, branches, and regions are valuable sources of learning and professional development. Information on events will be posted approximately 8-10 weeks prior. This information is made available to ACAeNews via the ACA master calendar and the various organization web sites. Send calendar items to email@example.com. Please provide the sponsor, dates, site and contact person information. Information posted here is restricted to that sponsored by ACA divisions, branches, regions and related organizations.
ACAeNews is published 24 times annually by the American Counseling Association for the benefit of members across the counseling profession. Any reference to a product, service, activity, or listing of a website in ACAeNews does not imply endorsement by ACA. Any views and opinions are those of the sponsoring organization and may or may not be shared by ACA.
Direct comments, questions, and submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org. All submissions will be subject to review by ACA for accuracy, timeliness, and relevance to the readership and may be edited.
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Copyright 2009, American Counseling Association, 5999 Stevenson Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22304. Telephone: 703-823-9800. Email: email@example.com. Permission is hereby granted to reproduce anything contained in this newsletter as long as the American Counseling Association is identified as the original source of the information.
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