Amid increasing racial tension and rates of mental illness, so few African Americans receive psychotherapy. According to the Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health, African Americans are 20% more likely to experience serious mental health problems than the general population and only 1 out of 3 African Americans who need mental health treatment receives it. Furthermore, African Americans have lower rates of any mental health service using prescription medications and outpatient services, but higher use of inpatient services. And while psychotherapy has been proven to help alleviate psychological distress, one fundamental question continues to pique the curiosity of researchers and mental health professionals: why it is so difficult for African Americans to seek help?
In this dynamic training, Dr. Buckingham highlights access to care, cultural insensitivity, and misdiagnosing challenges that prevents African Americans from seeking professional help. Additionaly, he sheds light on how psychotherapy can be used to either empower or disempower African Americans who have experienced and continue to experience oppression, discrimination, and systematic injustice.
Through personal story-sharing and professional treatment scenarios, Dr. Buckingham will answer the one question that most Americans hesitate to ask, Is Psychotherapy only for White People?
- Define historical trauma and mental health challenges in the African American community.
- Describe access to care, cultural insensitivity, and misdiagnosing challenges that prevents African Americans from seeking professional help.
- Explain how psychotherapy can be used to either empower or disempower African Americans.
- Identify social advocacy and growth strategies that social workers and other healthcare professionals can use to bridge the help seeking gap among African Americans and other ethnic groups.