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Archive for the ‘mental health and substance abuse’ Category

How To Cope With Sheltering in Place

February 25, 2015 Comments off

How To Cope With Sheltering in Place
Source: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Offers tips people can use to cope with sheltering in place. Explains reactions people often feel when sheltering in place; suggests ways to care for oneself and the family, such as making a plan and staying connected; and provides additional helpful resources.

Notes from the Field: Prevalence of Risk Factors for Suicide Among Veterinarians — United States, 2014

February 24, 2015 Comments off

Notes from the Field: Prevalence of Risk Factors for Suicide Among Veterinarians — United States, 2014
Source: Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (CDC)

Veterinarians are believed to be at increased risk for suicide compared with the general population. Few data on the occurrence of suicidal behavior and suicide risk factors among U.S. veterinarians are available. Veterinarians participating in two wellness summits held during September 2013 concluded that more research is needed on veterinarians and their mental health.

During July 1–October 20, 2014, an anonymous, Web-based questionnaire was made available through the Veterinary Information Network (VIN), an online community for veterinarians; VIN News Service; JAVMA News; and monthly e-mail messages to veterinarians in 49 states (Maine was excluded) and Puerto Rico sent through the state’s veterinary medical association, agriculture or livestock department, or health department. The questionnaire asked respondents about their experiences with depression and suicidal behavior, and included standardized questions from the Kessler-6 psychological distress scale that assesses for the presence of serious mental illness. Respondents with nonresponses were included in the denominators when calculating prevalence estimates.

Responses were received from 10,254 currently employed veterinarians (10.3% of all employed U.S. veterinarians). The most commonly reported age category was 30–39 years (28.8%), and 31.3% were male. Thirty-four percent reported practicing veterinary medicine for <10 years, 24.6% for 10–19 years, 21.6% for 20–29 years, and 19.8% for ≥30 years. Most (68.6%) respondents practiced small animal medicine, and 37.8% were practice owners. In comparison, 44.4% of U.S. veterinarians are male, and 66.6% practice small animal medicine exclusively.

Approximately 6.8% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 5.9%–7.7%) of male and 10.9% (CI = 10.2%–11.6%) of female respondents were characterized as having serious psychological distress based on the Kessler-6 psychological distress scale, compared with 3.5% of male and 4.4% of female U.S. adults, respectively (5). Since graduating from veterinary school, 24.5% and 36.7% (CIs = 23.0%–26.0%, 35.6%–37.8%) of male and female respondents reported experiencing depressive episodes, respectively, 14.4% and 19.1% (CIs = 13.2%–15.7%, 18.2%–20.0%) suicidal ideation, and 1.1% and 1.4% (CIs = 0.7%–1.5%, 1.2%–1.7%) suicide attempts. In comparison, male and female U.S. adults had a lower lifetime prevalence of depressive episodes (15.1% and 22.9%, respectively) and suicidal ideation (5.1% and 7.1%) but a higher prevalence of suicide attempts (1.6% and 3.0%).

The findings in this report are subject to at least two limitations. First, the small number of veterinarians who responded compared with the number of those potentially eligible increases the likelihood of nonresponse bias. Second, the possibility exists for social desirability bias. Both of these factors could lead to overestimation or underestimation of the actual prevalence of risk factors for suicide among U.S. veterinarians. Nevertheless, these data suggest that nearly one in 10 U.S. veterinarians might suffer from serious psychological distress and more than one in six might have experienced suicidal ideation since graduation. Additional data, particularly data from representative samples, are needed to further characterize the underlying risk factors for suicidal behavior among veterinarians and identify effective prevention methods.

Parenting a Child Who Has Experienced Trauma

February 21, 2015 Comments off

Parenting a Child Who Has Experienced Trauma
Source: Child Welfare Information Gateway

This factsheet discusses the nature of trauma, especially abuse or neglect, the effects of trauma on children and youth, and ways to help a child who has experienced trauma. Parents or foster parents who do not understand the effects of trauma may misinterpret their child’s behavior, and attempts to address troubling behavior may be ineffective or, in some cases, even harmful. By understanding trauma, parents and foster parents can help support a child’s healing, the parent-child relationship, and their family as a whole.

UK — Suicide prevention: second annual report

February 20, 2015 Comments off

Suicide prevention: second annual report
Source: Department of Health

This report summarises the latest trends, research and developments on suicide prevention in England.

The report:

  • calls on services to be more ambitious about suicide prevention, and challenge the assumption that suicide is inevitable
  • highlights 3 areas in England that have already adopted a zero suicide ambition
  • outlines how services can improve by adopting this new attitude and effective interventions

The annual report has been prepared with the input of leading experts in the field of suicide prevention, including the members of the National Suicide Prevention Strategy Advisory Group.

Drug Courts

February 17, 2015 Comments off

Drug Courts (PDF)
Source: U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs

Drug courts are specialized court docket programs that target criminal defendants and offenders, juvenile offenders, and parents with pending child welfare cases who have alcohol and other drug dependency problems. Although drug courts vary in target populations and resources, programs are generally managed by a multidisciplinary team including judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys, community corrections, social workers and treatment service professionals. Support from stakeholders representing law enforcement, the family and the community is encouraged throu

Domestic and International Adoption: Strategies to Improve Behavioral Health Outcomes for Youth and Their Families

February 17, 2015 Comments off

Domestic and International Adoption: Strategies to Improve Behavioral Health Outcomes for Youth and Their Families (PDF)
Source: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Summarizes data shared during a two-day interagency meeting hosted by SAMHSA in August 2012 to discuss science, policy, and practice related to the behavioral health challenges of children who have been adopted.

Prosecuting Alcohol-Fueled Sexual Assault (2007)

February 16, 2015 Comments off

Prosecuting Alcohol-Fueled Sexual Assault (PDF)
Source: National District Attorneys Association

Despite the prevalence of alcohol-facilitated sexual assault (AFSA), a n umber of barriers to successful prosecution exist. First, the use of alcohol in American society is quite common. Jurors may question whether the offender actually committed rape or just had consensual, albeit drunken, sex with the victim. Second, jurors may view a voluntarily intoxicated victim with skepticism or dislike, and may assume that she put herself in danger with her behavior. Research has demonstrated that individuals tend to view women who drink or get drunk as more sexual- ly available, and more likely to engage in sexual acts than women who abstain from alcohol. Third, AFSA cases are complicated by the physical manifestations of alcohol. “Alcohol decreases inhibitions, impairs percep- tion, and may cause amnesia and/or loss of consciousness, especially if used in conjunction with other drugs.” Victims may not be able to clear- ly perceive and/or remember the details of the assault.

This monograph discusses the prosecution of AFSA with a specific focus on AFSA when the victim is voluntarily intoxicated. It begins with a basic overview of toxicology. Next, it suggests a three-step process for prosecuting AFSA cases: (1) making the charging decision; (2) analyzing credibility and corroboration; and (3) trying the case. Finally, the monograph provides techniques for overcoming common defenses.

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