How did they get away with it?

When the APS made its first submission to the government in 2006 that only a small group of members of the clinical college should be more highly paid than every other psychologist,  what evidence did they offer? How did they pull off this clinical coup? How did they convince Tony Abbot to create a higher tier? What evidence did they use?

What right did the APS have to do this? Did members vote on it? How did they get away with devaluing the majority of their members in this way and still claim to represent them?

What evidence is there that clinical psychologists deserve a higher rebate than other psychologists?  How does someone like Dr Michael Carr-Gregg, a world recognised child and adolescent psychologist – and Counselling psychologist – end up being on a lower rebate? How does this make sense? And there are many others in this position.

Did the APS collude with the universities (via the accreditation body, APAC, pre-2009) to convince government to gain more funding for psychology?

Just who has benefited from this clinical coup? The universities have and the members of the Clinical College. But the profession certainly hasn’t!


2 thoughts on “How did they get away with it?

  1. For what it’s worth I have some recollection of some history.
    They (the leadership/board) were fairly open about it at meetings pre 2006. They suggested a foot in the door strategy to get Medicare for psychology clients. They were originally proposing that clinical Psychologists get the Medicare rebate and once that was achieved they would lobby for all other psychologists to follow.
    It was suggested they had to move cautiously because a certain high profile psychiatrist had government’s ear and was against psychologists being included in Medicare.
    The membership vehemently disagreed via Branch Chairs.
    In retrospect that is probably when the leaders began to be less transparent.
    As I have said before there was a National Branch Chair meeting in Melbourne around 2003/2004 when the issue of lack of evidence to support the APS policy of requiring members to have higher degrees for membership to colleges and eventually to be recognised as specialists was hotly contested with the leadership.
    They shut down the discussion due to it not being a prior item on the meeting agenda. It was brought up under “other business”.
    It was obvious they were worried at that point about members opinions and demands for evidence. But all that seemed to happen was they became more secretive.
    People can only hold branch chair positions for a maximum of 4 years I think from memory. Hence there has been a lack of continuity of those voices holding the leaders to account.
    On the other hand a certain Director has been in that position on the Board for 17 years.
    I would like to know what protection there is if signing the spill documents.
    The lawyers might want to throw some light on that.

    1. In answer to the above comment regarding what protection we have in light of signing the spill documents, I can only say that “I am NOT afraid.” If we are on the side of “Right,” against “Might” then I believe that ‘Justice will prevail’ if we are NOT afraid. Corruption needs to be exposed even if this means the destruction of the existing APS and with the formation of a totally new body of ‘accountable and ethical structures’ to replace the old Goliath of the APS.
      The APS is using Psychological moves to undermine its majority members, however we are all psychologically savvy and have identical skills. Let us not be out manoeuvred the shady processes of these strategists. This is a game of chess by players of equal calibre! Think psychologically all you non- Clinicals! But if you are afraid- then you/we are doomed. Think of the APS as a disturbed client? How would you manage them? Surely not by being afraid of your client?
      Let us then be stimulated and activated in our efforts to defeat the unethical practices of the APS board of management, who violate their own ethical principles established for our Professional Practice!
      Be excited by the opportunity to Checkmate the APS! PS I don’t know how to play chess, however I do understand the idea of “Checkmate.”

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