Texas Psychologists in Crisis

“TPA Psychologists Demand INDEFINITE Paid Supervision from Masters-level Providers

Even though the Texas Legislature is still in Special Session deciding how to fix the currently unconstitutional Texas Psychology Licensing Act, the Texas Psychological Association (TPA), is throwing its constituents money away for a lost cause,  a lawsuit against the Texas Psychology Board (TSBEP), seeking a temporary restraining order to stop the board from fixing its anticompetitive rules. The new (and likely-to-change-again-next-month-anyway) rules would allow Licensed Psychological Associates, masters-degreed psychologists to practice psychology independently (like LMHCs, LCSW), AND without having to pay money to be “supervised” by a doctoral-level psychologist INDEFINITELY. The Board’s new rules are merely a minimal response to protect themselves from impending federal lawsuits after the landmark case restricting licensing boards anticompetitive schemes, and  essentially intended to promote free enterprise in the area of psychology .
Most psychologists are naive to the antitrust laws. So here we go, the Federal Government enforces three major Federal antitrust laws, and most states also have their own. Essentially, these laws prohibit business practices that unreasonably deprive consumers of the benefits of competition, resulting in higher prices for products and services. However, antitrust laws are not violated simply when one firm’s vigorous competition and lower prices take sales from its less efficient competitors; in that case, competition is working properly.

Nonetheless, TPA’s argues these new rules would be bad for their pockets, because they would lower the price for their psychological services and increase competition by increasing the number of service providers.

We are NOT making this stuff up!

Changes ” will create a flood of new ‘psychologists’…. with economic pressure on health care costs, the availability of master’s-level providers will induce, health insurance companies to choose to place sub-doctoral providers on their panels instead of licensed psychologists because the companies can then reimburse at lower rates…”  “…”this will change the marketplace so dramatically that licensed psychologists will no longer be able to compete with LPAs who will have less educational costs and lower barriers to entry into practice.”

Let’s be clear, antitrust laws protect  consumers from  schemes that restrict the growth of free and fair market competition (more providers for public consumers), NOT doctoral-level psychologists’ perception of their customers or market loss… after being  expanded for more competition. Ironically, they could’ve fixed this in 2015, when whe started exposing their scheme, by eliminating unnecesarry barriers to licensure against their own newly graduated psychologists, and promote early competition, but instead they even created more hurdles… to have maintain a predictable way of controlling everyone who enters competition in  the relevant market. “This is the most remarkable lawsuit I have seen in the anti-trust area:  A cartel suing the government because the government is limiting the power of the cartel,” said Serafine (plaintiff in case that deemed TBSEP licensing act unconstitutional).

Believe us when we say this is a good development:

1- It shows the public (and the courts),  their true anticompetitive intent, and desire to maintain current antitrust violations.
2- It puts the psychology state board in a awkward position to defend the very same antitrust regulations they actively suppress.
3- It diminishes the power of psychological associations over state boards.
4- It shows smart psychologists where and how their money is misused by associations.
5- It creates more case law data for future licensing board lawsuits.

Again this whole lawsuit is merely another blow for psychologists… TPA is now asking Texas psychologists for more “money,”  for what we assert it’s a lost cause in a “legal fund to protect your profession,” as if were about to extinguish without them (old scare tactics).  We have been blasting and exposing psychology anticompetitive practices since 2014, and we predict this case will die quickly, if not already ‘dead on arrival,’ or by mootness on September 1st 2017…perhaps by voluntary withdrawal after ready this post  🙂 .

Mark our words.

Winners= TPA legal fund manager and legal team bank accounts.
Losers= TPA paying members.

#TheNewAPA #APA2017

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