Social agent for change | NURS 6630 – Psychopharmacologic Approaches to Treatment of Psychopathology | Walden University

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Social Agent for Change

            Mental health is a growing concern for many in today’s society.  As more research is done to better understand diagnosis and treatment options, the stigma surrounding it remains.  Even providers struggle to deal with there own stigmas regarding mental health which can affect patients.  In a study by Stigma and Health (2020), they found that providers stigma regarding mental health impacted the patient’s recovery and perceived quality of care.  Higher quality of care and an improved recovery were associated with providers that had a lower stigma regarding mental health.  As a future mental health provider, I would like to be a social agent for change by making sure I am constantly evaluating my own personal views and thoughts regarding mental health and not developing any stigmas.  Another way to be a social agent for change is to stay informed.  By making sure I am up to date on the latest treatments and diagnosis, I can ensure I am always providing not only quality care but also correctly treating my patients.  According to Research and Practice (2017), 40% of all complaints sent to the medical board were related to negligence.  Of those individuals receiving the complaint, the average years of practice was 19.2.  This shows that continuing education is not just for the new graduate and it is not just for the seasoned practitioner, its for everyone providing medical care.

Advocate for Change

            My current passion is pediatric mental health.  My goal upon completion of this program is to become a PMHNP with a focus on pediatrics.  One of the many issues that I face is that pediatric mental health is not as widely recognized as adult mental health.  “Untreated mental illness is the number one risk factor for suicide and the second leading cause of adolescent death for the sixth consecutive year” (Brino, 2020).  Since this is such a prevalent issue in our community, we must work to not only recognize this but treat it.  My plan to become an advocate for change is to become more involved with my community by building relationships with primary care providers and emergency rooms, which are the first point of contact for many patients.  Also, I plan to attend community events to promote early recognition, diagnosis, and treatment.  My goal is that by building relationships and being active in the community, children can receive the resources needed to help treat mental health. 

References

Brino, K. A. S. (2020). Pediatric Mental Health and the Power of Primary Care: Practical Approaches and Validating Challenges. Journal of Pediatric Healthcare34(2), e12.

Cox, D. R., & Grus, C. L. (2019). From continuing education to continuing competence. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice50(2), 113–119. https://doi-org.ezp.waldenulibrary.org/10.1037/pro0000232

Dell, N. A., Vidovic, K. R., Vaughn, M. G., & Sasaki, N. (2020). Mental health provider stigma, expectations for recovery, and perceived quality of care provided to persons with mental illness. Stigma and Health. https://doi-org.ezp.waldenulibrary.org/10.1037/sah0000227

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