News & Announcements
Why Culturally-Competent Health Care Providers are Important for Latino Mental Health
Posted: November 28, 2013
When it comes to health care for Hispanics in the United States, there are a number of barriers which keep Hispanics disproportionately affected by certain chronic diseases. While communication barriers and finances are two of the biggest hurdles, many Hispanics also do not trust their health care providers due to a lack of culturally-sensitive care. Mental health, for example, is one area Hispanics desperately need to overcome cultural barriers if they hope to overcome community stigma regarding mental illness.
Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology (MSPP) is one such organization working toward the goal of diversity. “We at MSPP are very proud of the Latino Mental Health Program because it represents our mission of meeting the needs and making a difference so well,” Dr. Stacey Lambert, the Associate Vice President of Academic Affairs at Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology, told Saludify.
“The program was designed to increase the number of culturally competent and linguistically skilled clinicians who could provide services to the Latino population. The school recognized the significant need given the dramatically rising number of Latinos in the U.S. relative to the low number of clinicians who can speak Spanish and understand the nuances of the various Latino cultures.”
These efforts now combined with the focus of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will hopefully encourage more Hispanics to seek out the medical care they will now have access to through health care reform.
Read more on VOXXI.com.
This Company Tracks Your Kids Online — and Tells You About their Mental Health
Posted: November 26, 2013
The San Francisco-based startup Mevoked tracks children’s online activity and delivers regular wellness reports to parents. It’s not about restricting access to the web or social media, but rather providing insight into children’s state of mind, helping parents spot risky behavior that might otherwise remain hidden. “We can look at early indicators of depression, obsession with violence, [and] risk of suicide based on online activity,” said Arun Ravi, the founder and CEO of Mevoked, in a conversation with VentureBeat. “We’re trying to intervene before that happens and empower parents to act.”
Mevoked, which plans to release apps for Twitter, Facebook, and mobile devices in the next few months, isn’t too focused on the individual pieces of content children are looking at or posting about — the company is more interested in usage patterns. Are kids using the web instead of sleeping? Are their online interactions overwhelmingly negative? Has their social media activity dropped off? Is there a string of worrisome Google searches? If so, Mevoked will alert you.
Read more on VentureBeat.com.
Seeking a Path to Health on the Rosebud Indian Reservation
Posted: November 25, 2013
The following is an excerpt from the Stanford Medicine newsletter. The writer is covering Stanford students in a class on rural health care and Native American health disparities.
Read more on Stanford.edu.
Pairing of Housing with Mental Illness, Substance Abuse Programs Leads to Decline in Homeless
Posted: November 24, 2013
The number of homeless people in the U.S. shrank from 2012 to 2013, according to a large government study that found the number of veterans and others who are homeless declined for the third straight year. But homeless numbers rose in New York and other states, according to the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
The HUD study uses data from a count conducted by U.S. shelters on a single night, in which they reported how many people were using their facilities, and how many were left without shelter. For the most recent Annual Homeless Assessment Report, the data was collected last January.
According to HUD, the pairing of housing with support programs that provide aid in dealing with mental illness, substance abuse and other issues "not only ends homelessness for these vulnerable individuals, but also saves the taxpayer money by interrupting a costly cycle of emergency room visits, detoxes, and even jail terms."
Read more on NPR.org.
Black Teens Less Likely than White Teens to Receive Mental Health Treatment
Posted: November 22, 2013
More than half of teens in the United States who have mental health disorders do not receive treatment, according to a new study. The findings come from an analysis of more than 10,000 teens. Of those teens who do receive help, most are not treated by a mental health professional, HealthDay reports. They are treated by pediatricians, school counselors or probation officers.
“It’s still the case in this country that people don’t take psychiatric conditions as seriously as they should,” lead researcher E. Jane Costello of Duke University said in a news release. “This, despite the fact that these conditions are linked to a whole host of other problems.”
Overall, in the past year, 45 percent of teens with psychiatric disorders received some form of service. The most likely to receive help were those with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (74 percent), conduct disorder (73 percent) or oppositional defiant disorder (71 percent). Those least likely to receive services were those with phobias (41 percent) and any anxiety disorder (41 percent). Black teens were much less likely than white teens to receive mental health treatment.