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By Lisa Goldstone, CPNP President

Since I last corresponded with you in our CPNP Perspective newsletter, our world and our daily lives have been upended by the COVID-19 crisis. Much has happened and CPNP has worked to be proactive in addressing the new normal which seems to evolve daily.

One of the most visible adjustments was the conversion of CPNP 2020 in Dallas to Virtual CPNP 2020 the last week of April. We are so very proud of our volunteers and our staff for converting our well-respected live gathering to an equally respected and valuable virtual event. Courses were rapidly re-formatted and rescheduled, speakers and committees were trained to use unfamiliar media, contingency plans were developed, and deadlines were changed.

And we were happy to do it. As we think of and support you, our peers, and fellow healthcare professionals on the front lines, these extra steps and accommodations are the least we can do. This was one way CPNP could make its contribution-by continuing to provide a quality learning experience focused on mental health and psychiatric pharmacy. For those not able to make Virtual CPNP 2020, an education enduring package or by module purchase option is available as well.

This accommodation by CPNP is one of the many we elaborated on in our Forum on our Future (our annual CPNP business meeting) on the closing day of Virtual CPNP 2020. In other articles included in this edition of the CPNP Perspective and the Forum recordings, you will hear from CPNP leaders as to how we are here for you now and in the future. Adapting to the current environment and needs, CPNP has:

  1. Worked to accumulate COVID-19 related information and actions impacting the profession and patient care. We have narrowed to the issues of most importance to practice in the areas of psychiatric, neurologic, and substance use disorders.
  2. Partnered with the Mental Health (MH) Community and MH Coalitions in joint advocacy focused on ensuring funding for MH in the COVID legislation and for removal of restrictions reducing access to care.
  3. Collaborated with JCPP organizations consisting of fellow pharmacy organizations such as APhA, ASHP, NCPA and NABP to issue letters, communicate with policymakers, and meet with regulatory agencies such as CMS, HHS, etc., to advocate for the removal of restrictions that eliminate access to pharmacist care and limit scope of practice and to ensure pharmacists can contribute to the testing and care of COVID patients.

There is no doubt, mental health needs will continue to increase in this new world. Psychiatric pharmacists are more important than ever and CPNP is working to be here for you now and in the future to support you as members and to ensure the medical community, policymakers, and regulators know the value we bring to the treatment team in terms of outcomes and improved access to care. Read our various CPNP Perspective articles in this month’s edition as well as our Forum on our Future recordings to learn more.

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