Top Diversity and Equity Leaders in Psychiatry Offer Guidelines for Academic Medicine in New Article and Commentary from American Journal of Psychiatry

Diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) leaders in academic medicine are subject to increasing expectations with limited resources and there is an urgent need for psychiatry departments to commit to fully supporting their efforts, according to an article now available in the American Journal of Psychiatry written by top DEI leaders in academic psychiatry from across the country.

Media Encouraged to Attend APA Annual Meeting Online May 1 - 3, 2021

The American Psychiatric Association (APA) Annual Meeting will be held online May 1 - 3, 2021. The theme for the meeting is "Finding Equity Through Advances in Mind and Brain in Unsettled Times," and the program will examine the concept of equity in many forms. Among the major topics to be discussed are racism, climate change, health equity, technology, COVID-19, trauma, and social determinants in community functioning.

APA Statement on COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution for People with Serious Mental Illness and Substance Use Disorders

As the COVID-19 vaccine is being administered across the country, the American Psychiatric Association called on state public health authorities today to include people with serious mental illness (SMI) and substance use disorders (SUD) to the equivalent of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Phase 1-C of their prioritization schedules. The recommendation coincides with APA’s recently released guidance document, The Role of the Psychiatrist in the Equitable Distribution of the COVID-19 Vaccine.

Dr. Rebecca W. Brendel Is Named APA President-Elect

The members of the American Psychiatric Association (APA) have chosen Rebecca W. Brendel, M.D., J.D., as the medical society’s next president-elect. The results were released today but are not official until the APA Board of Trustees confirms them at its March meeting.

APA Condemns Pepper-Spraying, Handcuffing of 9-Year-Old Girl by Rochester Police

The American Psychiatric Association (APA) released a statement today on the situation in Rochester, NY, where, as police responded to a family disturbance call, a 9-year-old girl experiencing a mental health crisis was pepper-sprayed, pushed into the snow, and handcuffed by the police. In a body-cam video released Sunday by the Rochester police department she was calling for her father.

APA and PaPS Joint Statement in Support of Dr. Rachel Levine’s Appointment as Assistant Secretary of Health

The American Psychiatric Association (APA) and the Pennsylvania Psychiatric Society (PaPS) today offered their formal support to the nomination of Rachel Levine, M.D., as President Biden’s Assistant Secretary of Health in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Dr. Levine received APA’s 2018 Javits Award for Public Service, which is the highest honor the organization gives a public servant. She was selected for the award for her leadership in Pennsylvania in fighting the opioid epidemic, her long record of promoting collaboration between physical and mental health, and her advocacy for the LGBTQ community.

APA Apologizes for Its Support of Racism in Psychiatry

The American Psychiatric Association today apologized to Black, Indigenous and people of color for its support of structural racism in psychiatry. Written and issued by the organization’s Board of Trustees, the apology acknowledges past practices and events in psychiatry that contributed to racial inequality, and expresses the organization’s commitment to developing anti-racist policies that promote equity in mental health for all. The apology is available to the public on APA’s website with an accompanying document covering some historical instances of racism in organized psychiatry.

APA Statement on Yesterday’s Violence in Washington

The American Psychiatric Association today condemns the violence that occurred during what should have been a peaceful step in the transfer of power in Washington, D.C., and offers resources for those whose mental health is impacted.

APA Applauds Congress for Taking Action to Strengthen Mental Health Parity; Including Key Mental Health Programs in Year-End Funding Package

The American Psychiatric Association (APA) today lauded Congress for passing the Strengthening Behavioral Health Parity Act (H.R. 7539) and including several key mental health and substance use-related programs in its combined $1.4 trillion year-end appropriations and COVID-relief funding package.

APA Reasserts Support for Affordable Care Act as Supreme Court Hears California v. Texas

The Supreme Court is hearing arguments today on California v. Texas, litigation challenging the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The suit seeks to have the ACA entirely invalidated now that the so-called individual mandate has been essentially removed.

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