A message from your Managing Council | Un message de votre conseil de gestion
[Le message en français suit.]
Dear CSPA Members and our Valued Sport Community,
The CSPA Managing Council is thinking about all of our membership and the sectors we serve during this rapidly evolving COVID-19 landscape. These are uncertain and stressful times, and your health and safety - as well as the clients we serve - is our number one priority.
Our sector is doing our best to provide accurate and useful information to athletes, coaches and sport organizations in these challenging times.
Self-Care and Safety
Above all else, we trust that you are taking care of yourselves and your families, and diligently following health agency advice by following the Canadian Public Health guidelines through such measures as hand washing with soap and water for a minimum of 20 seconds, social distancing, and seeking medical attention if you are experiencing flu-like symptoms.
The Alberta College of Psychologists has also provided the following recommendations for practitioners, which are applicable to all of our professional members:
Screen clients over the phone before scheduling or confirming appointments for any symptoms and travel history that may be related to COVID-19;
Ask clients with fever, cough or difficulty breathing to make appropriate alternate arrangements for appointments, including distance appointments or rescheduling appointments for a later date;
Post signs in reception area identifying concerning symptoms and asking clients to identify themselves if they are experiencing any of them;
Be more flexible with appointment rescheduling and cancellation policies until such time that risk has passed, e.g. by waiving cancellation fees;
Provide tissues, a garbage can, and hand sanitizer (or a hand washing station) in your setting;
Ensure high-touch surfaces (such as doorknobs, light switches, phones and sink faucets) are cleaned with a disinfectant regularly, or even between client appointments;
Engage in proper hand washing technique between sessions with clients; and
Seek medical care early if you yourself are experiencing symptoms and providing your health provider with information about any recent travel
Mental Performance and Mental Health Support and Contingency Planning - CSPA Registered Practitioners
This evolving situation has understandably caused considerable stress and mental health challenges to everyone, and this includes our CSPA members and their clients.
Our membership is comprised of experts in the field of (1) mental performance (MPC), (2) clinical counselling (CCC, RCC) and (3) clinical psychology (R. Psych). Many of our members are equipped to help athletes and other performers (e.g., musicians, dancers, business leaders), their family, coaches and (sport) organizations as they cope and adapt to these stressful circumstances, which will likely intensify in the days and weeks ahead. Please consult our website for a full listing of professional members and their areas of expertise, in order to seek out a professional who is best suited to support your needs and/or help you identify the best type of expert support required.
To search for a CSPA professional, please follow these steps:
Visit our Professional Members page located under the 'Find a Consultant' tab.
Navigate to the search bar at the top of the list (upper right hand corner).
Type in the acronym of the designation you are searching for:
Mental Performance Consultant (MPC)
Registered Psychologist (R. Psych)
Canadian Certified Counsellor (CCC)
Registered Clinical Counsellor (RCC)
You can also search by Province, Name, and/or City.
For a summary of what CSPA can offer, please download our brochure: CSPA Brochure
High Performance Sport
For those of you working in high performance sport, you may reference advice and updates from Canada's Sport Medicine Advisory Committee (SMAC), which consists of medical experts from sport in Canada and is comprised of members of Own The Podium, the Canadian Olympic Committee, the Canadian Paralympic Committee and the COPSI Network (Canadian Olympic Paralympic Sport Institutes & Centres)
This group will be releasing updates regarding the COVID-19 Coronavirus approximately every two days.
You may also wish to access mental performance and mental health resources for athletes (their family members), coaches, and sport organizations from Regional COPSIN Institutes, COC/CPC, and Game Plan partners.
Provincial and Regional Restrictions and Updates
Restrictions and updates to local and provincial measures that may affect you should also be consulted if you are operating at the local, regional or provincial level, or with special populations.
For example, see responses/updates from Provincial Governing bodies:
Allied Partner for Mental Health in Sport - CCMHS
The Canadian Centre for Mental Health in Sport (CCMHS) is also equipped with practitioners who may assist athletes or coaches with stress management and other mental health services at this critical time. Consultations are offered virtually through a secure telehealth platform or in-person.
How COVID-19 May Affect Your Practice
With the importance of social distancing and minimizing close contact, practitioners may wish to adjust their practice logistics and methods accordingly.
Please check updates from the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association and the Canadian Psychological Association.
Electronic Practice - Teleconsulting
If you have appropriate technology and platforms in place, as well as the competencies required to engage clients in a safe, effective therapeutic process, an electronic practice may be an option for you to continue to provide care to clients remotely. Please ensure that you consider issues such as confidentiality, consent procedures, and professional liability insurance.
The Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association has guidelines for the use of technology in counselling and psychotherapy - found here.