I hope you are all keeping safe with family. These are difficult times for us, our families, our patients, and for humanity at large. Please let us know how we can best assist you at this time of unique crisis.
The California Psychiatric Association is hard at work on your behalf to help support all psychiatrists and mental health patients in California. We are doing the following:
We are advocating for timely regulatory and legislative changes needed to provide safer medical / psychiatric care for Californians.
The California Psychiatric Association now has a CPA COVID-19 Communication Assistance Center for individual concerns or questions by psychiatrists about regulatory changes related to psychiatric care delivery and reimbursement due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Please email or text to COVID19@calpsych.org.
Randall Hagar, California Psychiatric Association Legislative Advocate, will continue with weekly and more frequent, as needed, updates to psychiatrists.
CPA will provide up-to-date, accurate information regarding COVID-19 and related mental health issues for the public. Up-to-date information and resources can be found at www.calpsych.org.
2 Personal Care and Information Sharing
This is a stressful time, particularly for those of us on the front lines of healthcare delivery.
In addition to the CPA Facebook site , we will be arranging noontime and early evening virtual, supportive sessions for California-based psychiatrists who may benefit from discussing the unique challenges associated with COVID-19 (e.g. abrupt change in technological and billing practice patterns, balancing work and family demands, frequently changing COVID-19 information). If interested in these sessions, please email Lila Schmall at email@example.com.
3 COVID 19 CPA Statewide Task Force:
Initial mission of the COVID 19 CPA Task Force, Mindy Young, MD, Chair, include:
Close coordination with local and state mental health organizations, the physician community (California Medical Association, medical specialty societies, and local medical societies), and American Psychiatric Association District Branches to provide statewide mental health resources.
Assess ongoing and frequently changing needs and develop state-specific interventions.
Communicate and address national and unique statewide and local developments.
Monitor and quickly address any legislative or regulatory issues, both nationally and state-specific, related to access, quality of psychiatric care, and physician reimbursement.
Coordinate with all CPA committees to address specific needs of varied psychiatric practices and patient populations in both public and private sectors.
We will be coordinating with all District Branches to develop this Task Force to benefit all psychiatrists in California. For those interested in participating or in need of these services, please notify Lila Schmall, CPA Executive Director.
Mary Ann Schaepper, M.D.
Information for Psychiatrists
Resources for Psychiatrists
Telepsychiatry in the Era of COVID-19 Webinar (3/20/20)
Managing the Mental health Effects of COVID-19 Webinar (3/24/20)
APA’s Practice Management Helpline
COVID-19 and Mental Health
New Telehealth rules
Disaster distress Helpline
National suicide Prevention Lifeline
Resources for families
Resources for Health Care and Community Leaders
CMS announces payment parity for audio-only telephone visits HERE.
COVID-19 Counseling California: collaborative effort of CA licensed mental health professionals to provide support to health professionals, first responder, and essential workers. Volunteer or sign up to request services HERE.
CA Dept of Public Health Medical Corps: paid positions, malpractice coverage provided by state to work at health care sites for non-COVID patients; as well as local and state volunteer positions. HERE
Pro Bono Counseling for Front-line Workers Facing COVID-19: Bay Area Chapter: volunteer to see healthcare/frontline workers pro bono with your own malpractice insurance. HERE.
CMA's Care 4 Caregivers: trains physicians to be peer coaches who volunteer to provide peer support to physicians, nurses, and respiratory therapists who seek help. (Non-clinical relationship) HERE.
LA County DMH COVID Emotional Support Warm Line: assist the public during the COVID-19 pandemic, which may include first responders. (training provided) application/questionnaire HERE.
Sierra Sacramento Valley Medical Society Joy of Medicine: UC Davis psychiatrists provide psychiatric care to physicians in Sacramento area via the physician's private insurance without referral. HERE.
CPA Monday evening support sessions: We invite all California psychiatrists to attend. Please contact Lila Schmall (firstname.lastname@example.org) to RSVP. Topics/discussants announced weekly.
The CPA encourages all volunteers to ask questions about how to handle psychiatric emergencies, malpractice insurance (if not explicitly covered), and the nature of the professional relationship before engaging in any volunteer positions. Note that many of these resources are an opportunity to provide or receive care as an essential healthcare worker. CPA encourages psychiatrists to attend to their own wellness as well as the needs of their patients.