Routine and systematic collection of data about the professional activities and service delivery patterns of professional psychologists provides an invaluable resource for the Practice Directorate to serve the changing needs of its members.
- Does the “typical patient” seen by professional psychologists today differ from five years ago? Are the actual or perceived burdens of managed care interfering with the psychologist-patient relationship? What should one (a prospective client) expect to happen in an initial session with a clinical psychologist? These are just a few of the questions addressed to the Practice Directorate within the last year.
- Routine and systematic collection of data about the professional activities and service delivery patterns of professional psychologists provides an invaluable resource for the Practice Directorate to serve the changing needs of its members. Additionally, this data can be used to guide policy and advocacy efforts on behalf of professional psychology, and to demonstrate the value of psychological services to the public, insurance companies and managed care organizations, and legislators, among others (Bobbitt, 2006; Phelps et al. 1998).
- In response to this need for current and growing need for systematic practice-based data, the APA Practice Directorate developed PracticeNet as an infrastructure for collecting real-world data on the activities of psychologists (e.g., professional activities, work setting, patient care load, descriptive and diagnostic information about patients) enrolled in the PracticeNet Practitioner Network. This information is rapidly collected, analyzed and summarized for members as a source of practice-based evidence, and used by the Practice Directorate to support advocacy efforts on behalf of the profession and to facilitate development of useful resources for APA members and their patients.