Always Double-check Credentials Through Your State's Professional License Look-up Site.
Yesterday, a colleauge and friend reported in an email that he contacted Psychology Today to question a verified therapist listing in their therapist finder. According to Psychology Today, verified means that the credentials presented by the therapist at sign up have been checked and are valid. What my friend found raises questions about the PT verification process.
My friend sent a link to an Illinois Dept of Financial and Professional Regulation announcement that orders a particular individual to cease and desist the unlicensed practice of psychology. Not only did my friend find the target of the order listed on Psychology Today, but the person was listed as verified.
The target of the order also managed to get himself a genuine NPI number and registered his "clinic" as a corporation, though not a professional corporation or a psychological corporation which would be required under Illinois regulations.
It's easy to verify an Illinois professional license, either by name or by license number. In addition to active licenses, the state lookup site reports suspended, probationary, revoked, expired and inactive licenses. If the look up site is reporting accurately, the person who is the subject of the cease and desist order has never held an Illinois license. The license number provided at the Psychology Today site has never even existed.
My friend also found that this individual shows a different license number on another directory site. That license exists, but it belongs to someone else.
In looking over the links sent by my pal, I noticed that the individual also lists a degree from a university that would not meet the program approval requirements for licensure in Illinois, and probably wouldn't qualify him in most if not all states, though I'm not certain of eligibility for other states. In many states, analysts, therapists or counselors can practice without a state license. The issue is how you represent yourself and your services. At the moment, this looks like a case of active and deliberate fraud.
I don't know how long it took my colleague to find all of this information, but following the links he sent me, it appears that all of the info is readily available online, so I wonder what happened when Psychology Today supposedly checked out the license number presented by this individual.
I did look at the Psychology Today link yesterday and this morning, and it appears that PT removed the verified status from the listing, perhaps in response to my friend's report, but the individual in question is still listed as a psychologist and the site still lists the invalid license number.
So now I have some questions. Has Psychology Today been failing to actually check credentials that they designate as verified or did this person somehow scam through the verification process? I don't know if PT checks the DPR site to verify a license, or if a simple image file showing a license suffices. I suppose one could make a credible-looking Photoshop copy of a license. If PT has been handling verifications with license image files or faxed copies, perhaps it's time to rethink their verification process.
I also wonder why PT would not suspend the listing if and until the listee provides evidence that all of this incriminating evidence is somehow a gigantic misunderstanding. In the meantime, this person is still listed as a psychologist on his PT page and the non-existent license number is still included on the page.
After receiving all of this information, I did a little Googling on my own and found that another major therapist listing site, Goodtherapy.org*, also presents the individual in question as a psychologist whose credentials have been verified.
Either a series of terrible mistakes has occurred or the therapist listing sites need to seriously tune-up their verification processes.
Work has eased up a bit, and I've got some online mojo going so now my plan is to complete all my CEs for 2014 and 2015 over the next couple of months. We can apply any APA approved CE hours earned in the two years previous to license renewal. I'm already well above what I need for 2014, so everything from now on spills over into 2015.
Singing on the remix of Flawless, Beyonce explains her sister's assault on husband, Jay Z:
“We escalate, up in this bitch like elevators/ Of course sometimes sh– go down, when there’s a billion dollars on an elevator.”
Ah yes, of course billionaire's sometimes have fistfights in elevators. Remember how Warren Buffet and his niece got into it in an elevator? Then there was Bill Gates punching out his sister-in-law. And don't even get me started on what Oprah did when I once found myself in an elevator with her.
The number of people who are counted as officially unemployed rose by 197,000, with most of the increase due to people rejoining the labor force or entering for the first time. Just 50% of the 9.67 million unemployed people are there because they lost a job; the rest are people who have started looking for work.
It’s a hopeful sign that so many people are beginning to look for work after so many years of discouragement. The fact that the economy has added 2.5 million nonfarm payrolls in the past year is luring some people back into the pool.
Hundreds of Turkish women posted pictures of themselves laughing on Twitter to protest comments by Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc, who had urged women not to laugh in public to "protect moral values," according to the Reuters news agency. [..]
Arinc, one of the co-founders of Erdogan's AK Party, said this week at a celebration of the end of Ramadan: "The woman should have chastity. ... She should not laugh in front of everyone and not be inviting in her behavior. She should protect her honor."
This morning I completed an online CE course to meet my ethics requirement. With this particular educational organization, participants can view the test before taking the course, so that's what I did. I answered 19 out of the 20 exam questions correctly before actually taking the course. The item I got wrong was this sort of question:
BabaLooey (2007) describes which leg of a three-legged stool as "perhaps the most important"?