The experience of many Aboriginal communities is that the majority of mental health professionals will fall into the cultural precompetence level, defined by Cross and Bazron as including those who are aware of their own personal limitations regarding cross-cultural communication. Top of page —Aboriginal health representative The construction of mental illness is a cultural concept developed mostly within a western context and it is a frustrating reality that many of the assessment tools used by clinicians have little or no cross-cultural validity. It must be recognised that somech services. (Thomas 2000 p5 cited in, I have seen things written in files that are racist and have gone against people. —Community mental health worker, We call it Bush CBT. Empowering consumers and their families and carers through participation and partnerships, Information: monitoring, evaluation and research. Cultural Sustainability and Mental Health in a Remote Aboriginal Setting.
For example, many Aboriginal people in Central Australia would consult a traditional healer or Ngangkari in the first instance, and these people may provide an opportunity for early intervention. In the mental health context, people can be especially fearful of having a "psych file", as there are examples of these being used against them by lawyers, particularly in relation to the removal of children. What do we need to do to incorporate relapse prevention into continuing care? —Remote health worker, Aboriginal families can be more accepting of illness. It is unknown how awareness and acceptance of having a mental illness, and of thereby being at increased risk of recurrent symptoms, translates within an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander context. It really means something like crazy and we wouldn't use such terms when referring to people in town, would we?
Awareness - acceptance, attitude and recognition, Awareness of potential risk and protective factors for relapse, Education, art and other forms of meaningful activity, The role of psychiatric disability support services, The role of the acute and specialist mental health system, The role of primary care including general practice, Aboriginal peoples and Torres Strait Islanders, People from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. Until issues around basic levels of service provision are addressed it will be difficult to implement relapse prevention in these communities. I don't think you'll read about it anywhere, it probably hasn't been documented anywhere.
It is our way of doing CBT work with people in the communities. Crucially, it must be understood that when the harmony of these interrelations is disrupted, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander ill health …
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