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November 2015
 Newsletter Editor:  Heather Blessing, MA, LMFT
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 Newsletter Highlights & Important Information

   Stay Tuned - in 2016 we will be at a new location - more information to come...

Letter from the Board

November 01, 2015

Dear SVC-CAMFT Member,

SVC-CAMFT had a very busy month.
We had a wonderful panel on LGBTQ issues for our monthly breakfast meeting. We received great feedback and are very thankful to those in the community that gave their time to be with us and educate us. Also thank you to our own Heather Blessing for the invaluable information she shared. It was greatly appreciated by all.

We have upcoming elections for the 2016 board. Please look for an email ballot mid November and vote.

We will not be having a breakfast meeting in November or December, but look forward to seeing everyone on Friday, January 15, 2016 for our Membership Meeting that will be at 9:00AM before our Monthly training which starts at 10:00am. 

In December we will start sending out renewal reminders via email.  Remember you must be a state CAMFT member to be a member of Sacramento Valley Chapter of CAMFT, so make sure your CAMFT membership is current.


Ann Leber, LMFT



  This issue:
· Letter From the Board
· Legal Beagle

· We Need You - for the Board
·  Presentation Summary
· Upcoming Meeting
· Upcoming Board Meetings

· Special Feature·
· Letters to the Editor

· Psyched about Books and Movies

· Advertising and Announcements

· Advertising Policy for the Newsletter


Ann Leber, LMFT

Patricia St. James, LMFT

Past President:
Jill  Lawler, LMFT

Becky Counter, LMFT

Beverly Baldwin, MFT Intern


Darlene Davis, LMFT
Joseph Borders, LMFT

Program Co-Chairs:

Hospitality Co-Chairs:

Carol Mahr, LMFT
Alexis Clemons, Trainee
Melinda Keeler, Trainee

3000 Club Co-Chairs:
Sterling Evison, LMFT
Charlotte Parks, LMFT

Volunteer Co-Chairs:
Amita Khare, Trainee

Membership Co-Chairs:

Jenna Bell, MFT Intern
Marti McClellan-Morehouse, LMFT

Sponsorship Co-Chairs:
Sara Coffill, MFT Intern

Newsletter Editor:
Heather Blessing, LMFT

Legislative Chair:

Bylaws Co-Chairs:
Jennifer Lombardi, LMFT

Communication Specialist
Karen Ulep, Intern


Legal Beagle

dectective.pngWelcome to the section of the SVC-CAMFT newsletter, Legal Beagle written by Darlene Davis, LMFT. The chapter thought it would be helpful to keep you updated on new laws, legislative pursuits or actions, as well as ongoing legal and ethical dilemmas we all face in our career as Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists, Interns, and Trainees. Please feel free to ask questions that you have and I will do my best to investigate and post your answer in the newsletter. Please note that articles are based on information from CAMFT and/or the BBS and have been researched to the best of my ability. This is not meant to be legal advice.  Please contact CAMFT or Board of Behavioral Sciences for any legal matters you need assistance for. 


Our Legal Beagle is on vacation but don't worry she will be back next year with a quarterly column for our newsletter with the latest information.



Darlene Davis, LMFT Executive Director HOPE; Healthy Outcomes for Personal Enrichment MFT Stipend Coordinator for Greater Sacramento Instructor of University of Phoenix www.darlenedavismft.com www.hope-counselingcenter.org


SVC-CAMFT is Still Busy During the Holidays

and is Holding Elections for the Positions of:




Look for a ballot in your email mid November. 

(For those who chose to have their ballot mailed by postal mail - those will also be going out in mid November)


is also looking still looking for Committee Volunteers:

Send an email to info@svccamft.org if you are interested in volunteering for the board with your contact information and the position(s) or types of things you are interested in.  Join us in making SVC-CAMFT the best it can be!

In December look for your renewal notice and remember to renew so you don't lose your great benefits.  Please note - all SVC-CAMFT members must also be a member of the state CAMFT so make sure your CAMFT membership is up to date and you have your membership number in your profile.

  October Presentation Summary

LGBTQIA Panel (2 CEUs)

Presenters: Ellie Zacks, Ph.D
Heather Blessing, LMFT
James Tiehm, Family Law Attorney
                   Marietta Rubien, LCSW

    In this month’s training, four professionals shared their knowledge and experiences in working with LGBTQIA individuals. Attendees were given extensive handouts that included LGBTQIA resources, breakdown of terms and their proper usage, legal issues, and case studies. Each presenter spoke for approximately 15 minutes and then a 50 minute questions/discussion period was held.

    Ellie Zacks, Ph.D stressed that when working with LGBTQIA clients, it is important to be supportive, recognize your own unconscious prejudices, and seek consultation when needed. She presented guidelines for working with LGBTQIA individuals and provided a link to “Practice Guidelines for LGB Clients” published by the APA: http://apa.org/pi/lgbt/resources/guidelines.aspx

    Heather Blessing, LMFT spoke about her work with LGBTQIA clients and discussed discrimination experienced by LGBTQIA individuals. She shared that to date, this year there have been 20 murders of transgender individuals, 18 of which were “people of color”. Lastly, Heather educated the group on the proper use of appropriate pronouns and terminology.

    James Tiehm, Family Law Attorney presented on LGBTQIA legal issues. He detailed several relevant court cases and explained current legal issues affecting LGBTQIA people. He said that “As LGBTQ persons we’re coming out all the time”, and talked about how this can be difficult for people, i.e. having to repeatedly explain or define yourself to others.

    Marietta Rubien, LCSW talked about labels we give ourselves and that are given to us by others. She explained that in the womb we are neutral and then at birth we are immediately given labels i.e. boy/girl and your name. “When we move through life we are juggling our labels.” She talked about her efforts in therapy to see her clients’ true selves, “who are you behind your labels?”, and asserted that “if we just describe the label, we miss the beauty.”

Summary by Joe Borders, LMFT


January Meeting Information

Annual Membership Meeting

Date:  Friday, January 15, 2016
Time: 9:00 AM to 9:45 AM
Location:  New Location To Be Announced

To Be Announced
Monthly Training

Topic:  TBA
Presenter:  TBA
Friday, January 15, 2016
9:45 AM to 12:00PM
Location: New Location To Be Announced
Networking begins at 9:45 AM - Training starts at 10:00 AM

Workshop Information:

This program will benefit MFT and LCSW licensees and pre licensees.

Includes: Continental Breakfast and meets the qualifications for 2 hours of continuing education credit for LMFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs, and/or LEPs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences.  Sacramento Valley Chapter of California Marriage and Family Therapist CAMFT CEPA CE Provider #62279 CE Credit will be awarded on site and to participants at completion of the course

Workshop Information:
Learning Objectives:

Register and pay online, register online and pay with cash/check at the door.

Early registration ends Tuesday, January 12th

Early registration rates*:

2016 Licensed Member of SVC-CAMFT or another local chaptersof CAMFT: $20

2016 Pre-Licensed Member of SVC-CAMFT or another local chapter of CAMFT: $15

Non-Member: $30

*Add $5 for late or "at-door" registration

For information on joining SVC-CAMFT or renewing your membership for 2016 please email: info@svccamft.org

Refund Policy
Cancellations received more than 7 days prior to an event may be subject to an administrative fee to cover costs of the initial transaction.  No shows, failure to attend, and cancellations 7 or fewer days prior to an event for any reason are non-refundable, including registrations received fewer than 7 days prior to an event. No credit, refunds, or price adjustments will be given for typographical advertisement errors. A $25 fee in addition to the registration fee will be charged for insufficient funds, denied credit cards, or charge-backs. By registering for the event you agree to the terms of the Refund Policy.

Grievance Policy
is located here.

To request accommodations for a disability for any of our events contact our Administrative Assistant at info@svccamft.org

2016 Upcoming Meeting Information

 Topic Speaker Location         
 January 15

 Human Trafficking:Addressing the Needs of Survivors Elisabet Medina
Cedar Point Recovery (map)
 February 19

 "The Daring Way" as it relates to eating disorders
 Jennifer Lombardi
Cedar Point Recovery (map)
 March 18

 Recovery / Rehabilitation
 Dr. Mikal-Flynn
Cedar Point Recovery (map)
 April 15

 TBA TBACedar Point Recovery (map)
 May 20

 Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation an Innovative Treatment for Depression
 TMS Health Solutions
Cedar Point Recovery (map)
 June 17

Cedar Point Recovery (map)
 July - TBA

 Law and Ethics
 Darlene Davis
 September 16

Cedar Point Recovery (map)
 October 21

 "Wisdom Path Parenting" Kate Messina, PhD, LCSWCedar Point Recovery (map)
 November 18

 TBA TBACedar Point Recovery (map)

Upcoming Board Meetings

Board Meetings are FREE for anyone to attend BUT you MUST register so we have an accurate headcount.
To Register click on the board meeting(s) you wish to attend.

Sunday, December 6, 2015 - 11:00AM - 1:00PM - Location:  TBD


Special Features

All Diagnosis Codes Changed October 1, 2015 to ICD-10 Codes

By Barbara Griswold, LMFT 

The DSM-5 came out in 2013, and some of us are still getting used to changes in some of our most frequently-used diagnoses. Well hang on, and spread the word: ALL diagnosis codes are changing on October 1, 2015.  This affects ALL therapists, both network providers and out-of-network providers.


First, a little context: Think of DSM codes as the psychiatric section of an extensive list of all medical diagnoses called the International Classification of Diseases (ICD). So if you are asked for an ICD diagnosis, don’t worry – you can use a DSM code and it will be the same.


Right now the DSM codes we are using are from the ICD-Ninth Edition, or ICD-9. But these codes are changing to a new code set, the ICD-10.  This means for all session dates October 1, 2015 and after, you must transition to the ICD-10 diagnosis code numbers for the same diagnoses we’ve been using.  To clarify:  If you've been using the DSM-5, the diagnoses themselves aren't changing, just the codes. 


But here’s some good news: For each diagnosis in the DSM-5 you will see listed both the ICD-9 codes in black and bold (for use prior to October 1st), as well as the ICD-10 codes (in gray and parentheses, starting with a letter) for use starting October 1st.


But warning: Looking only at category headings may lead to claim denials.  For example, if you look up "Post Traumatic Stress Disorder," you will see the current code 309.81, followed by an ICD-10 code F43.10.  However, this is the ICD-10 code for "Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Unspecified."  You should avoid "Unspecified" diagnoses, as plans may not reimburse for them.  Also, while it may seem from looking at the heading that PTSD has only one code, there are sub-codes within this and many other diagnosis categories.  Examine the criteria for each subcode to find the best diagnosis for your case.  Tip: Page 839 of the DSM-5 has a helpful and easy to use Alphabetical Listing of diagnoses, with both the ICD-9 and ICD-10 codes for each.


One other important caution:  Many plans won't pay if you only list a "phase of life issue" (what was a V-code in the ICD-9, now a Z-code in the ICD-10). 


Coding on the CMS-1500 claim:  Put the new diagnoses in Box 21.  Don't include parentheses or write the diagnosis name on the claim. However, in the upper right-hand corner of Box 21 where it asks for ICD-In (ICD Indicator), for sessions starting October 1st you should put a “0” (not a “10”) where you currently put a 9 — just before the vertical dashed line -- to indicate you are using the ICD-10. 


Q: “What if I submit claims after October 1st for sessions prior to October 1st?”  

A: Use ICD-9 codes for dates of service prior to October 1st, and ICD-10 codes for sessions October 1st and after.  Use separate claims for any pre-October dates of service and one for those October 1st and after.


Q: "I thought the Codes just changed in 2013?" 

A:  Those were the CPT Codes, which are the codes for the type of therapy provided (couple/family, diagnostic intake, psychotherapy 45 minutes, etc), not for diagnoses.


Q: "What should I do to prepare for the transition?"

A: If you use claims software, a claims clearinghouse, or a billing service, make sure it is ready for the transition.  And it may be time to shell out for your DSM-5 if you haven’t already.  You can get your copy from the American Psychiatric Association or from Amazon.com (save money by ordering the paperback). 



Barbara Griswold, LMFT is the author of Navigating the Insurance Maze: The Therapist’s Complete Guide to Working with Insurance – And Whether You Should, now out it its 6th edition.  She has a private practice in San Jose, California, and she invites you to contact her with your insurance questions and problems. Visit her website at www.theinsurancemaze.com to subscribe to her free monthly e-newsletter, to read helpful articles, to view her workshop schedule, or to schedule a consultation. 


The views expressed in the Special Feature Articles do not necessarily reflect the Sacramento Valley Chapter of CAMFT or CAMFT. They should be understood as the personal opinions of the author. No information in this articles will be understood as official.  Other views and commentary are welcome and will be published as long as they are respectful and stick to the topic.


Letters to the Editor
Welcome to the Letters to the editor Section.  We want to hear what you want to say about SVC-CAMFT, CAMFT, current events and issues.  Please see below guidelines on submitting a letter.

 We Have No Letters to the Editor!  Let your voice be heard!  Write a letter to the editor!

 Letters to the Editor Guidelines
  • You must be a current SVC-CAMFT member.
  • You cannot be a SVC-CAMFT board member or employee.
  • It must be no more than 250 words.
  • You must send in your full name so I can verify that you are a member.
  • If you wish your name not to be published please indicate.
  • Any letter published without a name will be listed as Anonymous MFT or Anonymous pre-license or Anonymous Associate
  • All letters must be respectful and without inappropriate words or phrases including name calling.
  • Please send your letters to info@svccamft.org
  • If you do not get a response back within 2 days that it has been received please email back.
  • If there is a problem with the letter (language, misspellings, length or appropriateness) you will receive an email back with the reason for the rejection and a chance to fix the problem and send it back in. 


Psyched about Books and Movies

Welcome to "Psyched about Books and Movies!"  Each month we include a book or movie review by one of our readers.  Please see below guidelines on submitting a review. 

Title:  The Bucket List
Rated: PG-13
Released: 2007
Reviewer:Heather Blessing, LMFT 
Review: This movie has so many thoughtful processes that the characters go through.  From realizing that death does not care what you social economic status is to dealing with death.  Two men (one that was a mechanic and one that owns the hospital they are in) decide to make a bucket list.  The well off man starts out with his being a list of things he felt he deserved because of his station in life and that he was going to die.  The lists become so much more and means so much more as both men try to live what remains of their lives to the fullest.  Most importantly it is the change of their perspectives through this process that make them better people.


Book/Movie Review Submission Policy

All reviews are not to exceed 1000 key strokes.
Your review should include the title, a short synopsis about why you like or dislike it, and the author’s name & publication date. You can also include a picture of the book and/or movie. After review, we will publish your review in our next newsletter. Reviews submitted that are longer than 1000 characters will be returned for editing. It is best to type your review in a Microsoft Word document to note how many key strokes (characters with spaces), how big your review is, and for your own record keeping. You can then copy and paste it into the online submission form located here (http://www.svccamft.org/Newsletter.html) To learn more about checking your review for key strokes, spelling grammer and size click below: (http://www.svccamft.org/How_to_check_review_in_microsoft_word.doc).

It is your responsibility to check for spelling and grammar errors.  Reviews must be received by the 20th of the month in order to appear in the next newsletter.

You can submit your review by: Visiting our webpage: www.svccamft.org

Mailing it in: P.O. Box 163385, Sacramento, CA 95816


Advertising and Announcements


The Cognitive Behavior Therapy Center of Sacramento Valley in Roseville is seeking a Licensed Therapist or experienced Registered Intern for an employment opportunity in our newly opened Roseville office. We specialize in evidence-based therapy for anxiety and obsessive compulsive disorders in adults, children and teens. Please visit http://cognitivebehaviortherapycenter.com/mft-therapy-jobs-sacramento-roseville  to learn more about the job opportunity and our center as well as how to apply.


Law Offices of Joseph C. George, Ph.D.
Licensed Psychologist (PSY 7480)
Attorney at Law (SBN 119231)
Free consultation.
Website: www.psyclaw.com
Telephone: 916.641.7300


 The National Social Anxiety Center has launched a Facebook page where we post articles, information and announcements about the latest research and activities occurring with social anxiety. We have now surpassed 500 Likes (followers)!

As you may know, social anxiety is one of the most common mental disorders and there are very few organized resources for learning about and treating social anxiety. We'd like to invite you to keep up to date with the latest in social anxiety by following the National Social Anxiety Center on Facebook.

Please click on the following link to visit our Facebook Page and click on the Like button in the header to Like the Page:

Thank you for your support!

Best regards,
Laura Johnson and the Board of Directors
National Social Anxiety Center


Advertising Policy for the Newsletter

All ads and reviews are not to exceed 1000 key strokes. Chapter members advertise at no cost. Non-members can advertise about employment opportunities at no cost. Non-members, non employment-related ads follow these rates:


$10 for 200 key strokes

$20 for 201-600 key strokes

$30 for 601-1000 key strokes

Full page and ½ page ads are not accepted.


All ads contain text only; no graphics will be included.

Ads submitted that are longer than 1000 characters will be returned for editing. It is best to type your ad in a Microsoft Word document to note how many characters, how big your ad is, and for your own record keeping. Please visit our site to find more information on how to use Microsoft word for editing. You can then copy and paste it on our online submission form located here (http://www.svccamft.org/Newsletter.html)

It is your responsibility to check for spelling and grammar errors.


Ads must be received by the 25th of the month in order to appear in the next newsletter. Ads are placed in the order that they are received.


You can submit and pay for your ad by:


Visiting our webpage: www.svccamft.org

Mailing in payment: P.O. Box 163385, Sacramento, CA 95816

Emailing the Newsletter Editor: info@svccamft.org

Thank you for contributing to the newsletter!

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