i had a great day at the VA today! i have enjoyed it so far, but i have been longing to have the experience of conducting the mental health intake and assessment process on my own. today, that happened. it went well and i feel much more confident having that under my belt. no longer do i have to agonize over my first therapy session. it was rewarding and affirming.
one of our class assignments recently was to do a cultural competency assessment of the agencies where we have our internships. in my department i noticed some important questions were missing from the forms we use to make mental health diagnoses--we never asked about what cultural groups people identify with or how their values/beliefs influence their ideas about mental health treatment.
the second part of this assignment was to conduct an "intervention" that would respond to the problems we identified. i dreaded this part. i feared it would feel like i was judging the department. i didn't know exactly how to introduce this intervention in a natural, comfortable way. but today, my opportunity snuck up on me in a staff meeting. how convenient! i presented my intervention, got a round of support, and the staff decided to include it in a report about ways our department is improving patient care. wohoo!
if only the mass amounts of homework awaiting me would pan out so nicely.