My experience is from the perspective of a mature aged woman coming to clinical psychology after a career as a hospital scientist and a scientist working in the pharmaceutical industry.
The membership benefits offered by a professional organisation, such as ACPA, are essential for the individual practitioner and the profession. The professional development program provides the opportunity to maintain professional standards, to stay up to date with the latest research and have intelligent and relevant discussions with colleagues to discuss the profession of clinical psychology. Other benefits, such as indemnity insurance, are essential for practitioners working in private practice
I would review the membership benefit program and consider surveying the members asking them what they would like to see offered and what are their priorities. The ACPA Member Benefits Program is an opportunity to differentiate and to add value to maintain current ACPA memberships and to attract new members. Using technology in a unique way, such as online learning, is worth exploring and developing for ongoing professional development.
Over the years I have regularly engaged in the innovative ACPA professional development program, which enables me to stay current and interact with like-minded peers, which is critical for a practitioner working in private practice, such as myself. I have also taken advantage of the indemnity insurance offered by Insurance House.
I am a founding member of ACPA, and relinquished my membership of the APS, as I wanted to be a member of a professional body, which represented clinical psychologists. It is important to support an organisation of hard working volunteers and I regularly attend the annual ACPA conference and any professional development opportunities. I am interested in the psycho-dynamic/psycho-analytic workshops.
I came to clinical psychology when life events offered a career change and I took up the opportunity to retrain as a clinical psychologist. The phone call offering me a place in the clinical training program at Macquarie University remains a personal high point. Life presents opportunities for change but taking up those opportunities requires courage and resilience.
I have more than ten years of experience as a clinical psychologist working in the public hospital and community mental systems, and private practices as a sole practitioner and in a group practice of clinical psychologists. An area of expertise and interest is my health-related experience which provides psychological services to a diverse group of adult patients with life threatening diseases from a varied multicultural group in both the public and private sectors using a variety of evidence based therapies. I have supported clinical psychology interns and students enrolled in the clinical program by offering an oncology placement in a public hospital in Sydney for eight years. Working with students and offering supervision was invigorating and challenging at times, although always worthwhile for myself. The students keep me on my toes and in touch.
The profession of clinical psychology is at a cross roads. The division is widening between psychologists and clinical psychologists and misinformation proliferates with the potential to reduce the standards in the profession. The public continues to be confused about psychologists in general and the training differences between clinical psychologist and psychologists.
ACPA continues to represent clinical psychologists at the member level, clinical training and the federal government, specifically Medicare. Without ACPA the voice of the individual clinical psychologist would be lost. I can provide extensive commercial/industry experience to the Board now and in the future.