Federal and State Policies for Private Practice

Introduction

       As a trade, the professional practice of psychology is highly regulated by federal law and state government policies and laws. Maryland, in conjunction with the laws of the state, two government agencies are active in establishing the public's trust in mental healthcare: (a) state of Maryland Board of Examiners of Psychologists; and (b) the department of Health and Human Services. The Board of Examiners is responsible for issuing the licenses in psychology. The government agency is made up of licensed psychologists appointed by the governor of the state of Maryland. The minimum qualifications for applying for a licensure in Maryland are:

  1. Doctoral degree in psychology (not education or any other type of degree).
  2. Two years of supervised professional experience with a licensed psychologist.
  3.  Moral and emotional intelligence.

Psychology has a very strong science-based foundation. Dr. Freud was a M.D. specializing in neurology. The father of psychology, Dr. Wundt, was a M.D. who specialized in physiology. Psychology was founded by medical doctors and is a medical sub-discipline of psychiatry. Therefore, this is the reason for long training and vigorous requirements (15 to 20 years). Just like medical school, to become a psychologist requires major sacrifices of time, ego, and having a social life. Psychology is defined as the study of the mind, the mind-body process (neuroscience) and human behavior. In conclusion, practicing psychologists should always display their doctoral degree in their office or the waiting room, and if required, their license. The license number should appear on all signed practice documents as well.

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