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Division 54 of the American Psychological Association (aka Society of Pediatric Psychology ) is a division of the American Psychological Association

Aims of organisationEdit

Special interest groupsEdit

Society of Pediatric Psychology Special Interest GroupsEdit

The Pediatric Psychology APA Division 54 formed Special Interests Groups (SIGs) and they consist of the following:

  • Adherence Special Interest Group,
  • Consultation and Liaison Special Interest Group,
  • Craniofacial Special Interest Group,
  • Complementary and Alternative Medicine Special Interest Group,
  • Diversity Special Interest Group,
  • Epilepsy Special Interest Group,
  • Obesity Special Interest Group,
  • Pediatric Bioethics Special Interest Group,
  • Pediatric Cardiology Special Interest Group,
  • Pediatric Gastroenterology Special Interest Group.

The mission of the SIG groups are to promote evidence- based approaches to research and clinical service targeting the specific interest.

Adherence Special Interest GroupEdit

The Adherence Special Interest Group promotes evidence-based approaches to research and clinical service targeting the assessment and treatment of regimen adherence concerns in youth and families across a variety of chronic health conditions.[1]

The World Health Organization (2003) [2] has labeled poor adherence to prescription medications and treatment a "worldwide problem of striking magnitude". Adherence according to the WHO (2003) is defined as "the extent to which a person's behavior—taking medication, following a diet, and/or executing lifestyle changes, corresponds with agreed recommendations from a health care provider" (Haynes, 1979;[3] Rand, 1993 [4]). Non-adherence influences health care utilization and costs, morbidity, and health outcomes (Drotar, 2000[5]). Potentially effective treatments become ineffective by non-adherence and clinical benefits are not received. For example, up to 20% of patients fail to fill new prescriptions and 50% of people with chronic health conditions discontinue their medication within six months. Adherence to behavioral treatments is also poor. For example, no more than 30% of patients quit smoking at their provider's request, even those with lung conditions. At the same rate, the leading causes of death (Heart disease, cancer, stroke and chronic lower respiratory diseases- see http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/lcod.htm) contain behavioral related causes and treatments. Therefore, adherence is a lifelong, mortality risk.

Additionally, higher rates of adherence result in economic benefits. For example, direct savings may be accrued by reduced use of expensive and sophisticated health services needed in cases of crises, relapse, and worsening disease outcomes due to non-adherence. Research suggests that when self-management and adherence program are combined with regular treatment, there is an increase in health-promoting behaviors and a cost to savings ratio of approximately 1:10 in some cases and results persisted over 3 years (see Holman et al., 1997;[6] Tuldra et al., 2000 [7] as well as the full WHO Report: www.who.int/chp/knowledge/publications/adherence_full_report.pdf).

Access to medical care is vitally important, but if people do not comply with their professional recommendations, then mere access will not lead to better health outcomes. Thus, generating innovative methods to enhance childhood adherence has become increasingly more important because effective preventive efforts must begin at an early age, starting with healthy lifestyle behaviors and increased adherence. For example, "a pediatric psychologist may work with a young child who has cystic fibrosis and who refuses to complete all his daily medical treatments that are essential to his health. The psychologist might work with the child's caregivers on how to interact with the child when he refuses his medical treatments and how to implement a reward system to reinforce his adherence to treatments." http://www.nextgenmd.org/archives/808. Also, challenging family interaction styles can play a role in adherence. In particular, families with divorced parents may struggle with communication concerning a child's illness and treatment. Pediatric psychologists may intervene by working with the parents to find a way to communicate more effective so that barriers to adherence are removed.

Craniofacial Special Interest GroupEdit

The Craniofacial special interest groups consists of members of the Society of Pediatric Psychology who share an interest in craniofacial conditions.[1]

Complementary and Alternative Medicine Special Interest GroupEdit

The Complementary and Integrative Medicine special interest group is a forum for communication and discussion about the role of CIM as it relates to advancing the health and well-being of pediatric populations.[1]

Consultation and Liaison Special Interest GroupEdit

The mission of the Consultation and Liaison Special Interest Group is to promote discussion, education, research, and networking among pediatric psychologists who provided consultation and liaison services to pediatric patients and their families.[8]

Pediatric Consultation-Liaison is a subspecialty practice of pediatric psychology and represents the most active collaboration between pediatricians and pediatric psychologists.[9] According to the 2003 Society of Pediatric Psychology Task Force Report: Recommendations for the Training of Pediatric Psychologists, consultation-liaison roles are one of the types of experience most important to developing competencies in pediatric psychology.[10] Pediatric psychologists often consult with pediatricians and providers from other disciplines in a variety of inpatient and outpatient settings.[11] They have a working understanding of various consultation models and often consult with and educate patients, their families, physicians, other health-care providers school psychologists, counselors, teachers, and other professionals regarding pediatric illness and accompanying psychosocial issues. Pediatric psychologists also act as liaisons with medical subspecialties and provide support to other professionals for issues related to the management of difficult families, stressful physician and family interactions, professional burnout, bereavement, and negotiating stressful situations.[10]

Consultation-Liaison ModelsEdit

Consultation vs. Liaison EmphasisEdit

Often considered synonymous, the terms "consultation" and "liaison" have important distinctions. While many psychologists provide both services, pediatric psychologists acting in a consultant role are directly involved in patient care only at the request of a referring physician or service. In a consultation arrangement, the relationship between the consultant and physicians is often time-limited—when consultation services are terminated, the relationship often ends. Pediatric psychologists in a liaison role are often involved in the day-to-day workings of a particular hospital service or unit and are formally embedded within a department or working service. Psychologists in a liaison role are often involved in all of the systemic and mental health concerns of the unit, not just the concerns of referred patients.[12]

Patient-Centered vs. Systems-Centered FocusEdit

Consultation-liaison models are sometimes differentiated based on whether the focus of the services are primarily on the patient ("patient-centered") or on the larger system the patient and family must rely on for medical care ("systems-centered").[12] In patient-centered services, the primary goal is to evaluate the patient in order to provide direct treatment. In systems-centered services, the focus of the services are on creating change in the professionals requesting the services to make them more effective in the intervention with the case in question, as well as in other similar cases.[12]

Inpatient Pediatric Consultation-LiaisonEdit

As an inpatient pediatric consultation—liaison, the pediatric psychologist advises physicians or other medical professionals or provides direct services to medically hospitalized children regarding behavioral, emotional, or familial aspects of the child's illness and symptoms.[13] The consultation-liaison psychologist's primary role includes evaluating children and their families for mental health concerns; recommending and providing treatments; and educating families, staff, and referring physicians on a wide array of factors associated with adjustment to medical illness and injury. Patient interventions include teaching coping skills, evaluating side effects of medication, helping manage physical pain, and addressing physical pain, among others. Defined narrowly, inpatient pediatric consultation-liaison involves a pediatric psychologist providing assessment and guidance to a pediatrician colleague regarding the care of a specific patient. Broadly defined, the pediatric consultation-liaison psychologist is a systems-level catalyst—in educating and empowering multiple interacting components of the health care system, fostering a responsive environment that maximizes the overall quality of life and psychological adjustment of patients and their families.[14]


Journals publishedEdit

The development of SPP produced the need for formal communication among members in the field. Thanks to the work of Allan Barclay and Lee Salk, a newsletter was created.[15] The Pediatric Psychology Newsletter, distributed quarterly, was launched in 1969, with Gail Gardner acting as first editor. However, due to SPP's limited funds in the early years, publication ceased from 1970 to 1972. With the help of growing membership and generous contributions from early members, the newsletter was restarted and saw continued growth from 1972 to 1975. The quality and volume of submissions to the newsletter resulted in the transition to the Journal of Pediatric Psychology (JPP) in 1976. The newsletter per se would not emerge again until 1980, under the leadership of Michael Roberts.[16]

The JPP began steady publication in 1973 under the appointment of Diane Willis as editor. A Professor of Psychology at University at Oklahoma and psychologist at the OU Child Study Center, she served as editor from 1973 to 1975, helping create the peer review system in place today, expanding content published, and seeing it go from Newsletter to Journal.[15]

In 1976, Don Routh began serving as Editor with Gary Mesibov serving as Associate Editor. He would serve two terms. Although still under financial uncertainty, several important events occurred during this time. In 1976, Psychological Abstracts recognized the JPP. This also marked the beginning of international subscriptions requested. The following year, APA gave JPP status as a division journal.[16] The popularity of the Journal continued to grow. Common topics of the JPP included chronic pain and hyperactivity. The most important event, however, may be the successful contract negotiation with Plenum Publishing in 1979 [15] which helped alleviate the ongoing financial concerns of the organization.

The third Editor of JPP, Gerald Koocher, served from 1983 to 1987. Michael Roberts became Associate Editor. The growth of JPP was evident as approximately 100 articles were submitted annually for publication. As a result, the Journal became more selective in its acceptance, at a rate of 29 percent. Furthermore, partnership with Plenum Publishing was renegotiated, and the Editorial Board expanding membership. Chronic illness continued to be topic "de jour," but more applied research emerged.[15]

Michael Roberts served as Editor from 1988 to 1992. Associate Editors included Annette La Greca, Dennis Harper, and Jan Wallander. Under Roberts' leadership, JPP transitioned from a quarterly to bimonthly publication. While chronic pain remained the theme of most publications, more publications featured grant-funded research.[15]

Annette La Greca followed Roberts as Editor, serving from 1993 to 1997. Associate Editors across this span included Wallander, Dennis Drotar, Kathleen Lemanek, and later, Anne Kazak. The JPP continued its steady growth, and more papers were dedicated to special themes, explanatory and longitudinal in design, and nonintentional injuries. The submission rate grew and, as a result, only 16-18 percent submitted were published.[15]

Kazak took over as Editor from 1998 to 2002. Associate Editors included Lemanek, Christine Eiser, Antohony Spirito, Jack Finney, and Robert Thomposn. The JPP finished its contract with Plenum Publishing at this time and decided to sign a new contract with Oxford University Press. Her term also saw the journal increase to 8 issues a year and provide online access to its members.[15] Kazak was succeeded by Ron Brown, who served as Editor from 2003 to 2007. Drotar took taking over the editorial reins during 2008-2012 and Grayson Holmbeck served starting in 2013 [1].


Prizes awardedEdit

See alsoEdit

External linksEdit


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