The mission of the Ohio Psychological Association – Colleague Assistance Program (OPA-CAP) is to provide Ohio psychologists and OPA members with assistance in accessing services to restore professional functioning and to protect client welfare. In the role of providing psychological care to others, psychologists may themselves become in need of assistance. State law and established ethical standards require psychologists to recognize when one’s objectivity or competency may be impaired. The OPA-CAP aims to assist in prevention and offers treatment of impairment by providing relevant education as well as referrals for treatment to assist in maintaining and/or restoring professional functioning.
Philosophy and Purpose
The OPA CAP program is based on principles of self-care, prevention, early intervention and psychological care to Ohio psychologists. We seek to create a climate which normalizes self-care and help seeking behavior. In doing so the OPA-CAP program hopes to help stressed/distressed psychologists from becoming impaired and also to link with providers those psychologists who are in need of their own treatment.
In 2006, the Ethics Committee of the Ohio Psychological Association formed a subcommittee to investigate the feasibility of a Colleague Assistance Program for Ohio Psychologists. Subcommittee members were chosen and Michael Schafer, PhD was appointed chair. The Ohio CAP subcommittee has consulted with APA, other state CAPs, the State Board of Psychology, and the Ethics Committee in development of this program. A formal proposal to establish a CAP for psychologists was submitted to and approved by the OPA Board in 2010.
The OPA Colleague Assistance Program provides Ohio psychologists with assistance in accessing needed services in order to restore optimal professional functioning and to eliminate risk to the general public. OPA-CAP also provides educational programs and articles/resources about self care and recognition of problems before impairment occurs.
The OPA-CAP program will serve as a clearinghouse of information as opposed to a direct provider of services. Services provided include education, prevention activities, resources, and referrals. Psychologists seeking assistance, who contact the program, are referred to a network provider for ongoing care.
The OPA-CAP program will serve Ohio licensed Psychologists who are voluntarily referred or self-referred, regardless of their membership in the OPA.
The OPA-CAP committee has developed a list of approved “OPA-CAP network providers”. These providers are licensed psychologists who hold an unrestricted license to practice Psychology in Ohio, maintain current malpractice coverage, submit professional references, have completed the OPA-CAP training, and agree to adhere to policies and procedures of OPA-CAP. The Ohio Psychological Association, Ethics Committee, and CAP subcommittee do not endorse network providers nor guarantee the outcome of CAP services.
Confidentiality and “Safe Passage”
We understand that psychologists will feel more comfortable seeking early intervention if they know their request will be kept confidential. Accordingly, those contacting the program voluntarily will be assured of confidentiality, even if the presenting problem is a violation of APA ethical standards or Ohio Board of Psychology rules regarding professional conduct. Further, once a psychologist contacts the OPA-CAP or any of its network providers, he/she becomes a client, and is eligible for the confidentiality protections afforded to any consumer of psychological services. These protections are spelled out in Ohio Administrative Code 4732-17-01 (G)(2). Mandatory reporting requirements pertaining to the abuse of children or vulnerable adults would still apply.
The Ohio Board of Psychology supports OPA-CAP principles of self care, prevention, and early intervention. The Board further supports “safe passage” for those providers who contact OPA-CAP before their distress has escalated to the point of impairment, resulting in improper behavior.
Procedure to Request Assistance
Interested psychologists may contact an approved network provider directly. A list of providers can be obtained through the list below. If you choose to contact a network provider for an assessment, please identify yourself as a psychologist seeking service through OPA-CAP.
OPA CAP Approved Network Providers
As of October 2012, applications are being solicited and reviewed. As network providers are approved, their contact information will be noted below.
Network providers have agreed to waive fees for the first 2 (two) sessions. The fee structure for subsequent visits will be negotiated between the client and the provider.
Interested in becoming a OPA-CAP network provider?
The OPA-CAP maintains a network of licensed Ohio psychologists who agree to accept at least one new referral per year and to offer two initial sessions at no charge to new patients. An OPA-CAP network provider agrees to abide by all policies and procedures promulgated by the subcommittee, including requirements for provider eligibility and participation in ongoing continuing education. Providers warrant that all work will be consistent with the highest ethical and professional practice standards and with pertinent laws and regulations.
Acceptance as Network Provider:
- Signed Referral Network Provider Agreement
- Signed Network Provider Application
- Signed Provider Professional Reference Release of Information
- Current unrestricted license to practice Psychology in Ohio
- Current malpractice coverage
- Seven years of professional experience as a psychologist
- Completion of CAP Training – 3 hours (CE credit provided)
- Two letters of recommendation
- OPA Member
Maintenance of status as Network Provider:
- Current unrestricted license to practice psychology in Ohio
- Current malpractice coverage
- Submission of required reports to OPA-CAP on a timely basis
- Adherence to Ohio CAP policies and procedures
- Attendance at annual meeting of OPA-CAP providers (conference call participation acceptable)
Please fill out the Network Provider Application , Referral Network Provider Agreement, and Provider Professional Reference Release of Information. Submit completed forms to Michael Ranney at the OPA Office. The professionals you have provided as references will receive the appropriate forms to complete. If accepted as a CAP Network Provider, you will be contacted by a member of the OPA-CAP committee to provide information about the training. Questions can be directed to Michael Ranney at 614-224-0234.
Ohio CAP Sub-Committee Members
Michael Schafer, PhD, Chairperson
Rich Ashbrook, PhD
Marianne Bowden, PhD
Greg Brigham, PhD
Sherry Knapp-Brown, PhD
Kay Levine, PhD