208140 Creative treatment approaches for rural and Spanish-speaking populations

Tuesday, November 10, 2009: 1:30 PM

Kenny House, LCAS, CCS , Coastal Horizons Center, Wilmington, NC
This presentation will demonstrate how one community substance abuse and mental health program has established a rural satellite site with the goal of improving psychiatric and substance abuse care to an underserved population. Two main barriers to care were identified; namely, limited access to care and inadequate training of staff in evidence-based care. Studies show that poor mental health and psychological distress are linked to poverty, and that Latinos and non-citizens are more than twice as likely to have incomes below poverty guidelines. Clinicians recommend that the successful engagement of Latino clients in crisis intervention, substance abuse treatment or therapy is a process that should not, or rather cannot, be rushed. One of the goals of crisis intervention and therapy is to create a trusting relationship and healing environment for Latinos. Thus, the feasibility of a telemedicine assessment was examined for HIV risk and co-occurring disorders in individuals who presented for substance abuse treatment. The study assessed patient and clinician satisfaction with a standardized telemedicine evaluation at both the urban and rural programs. The telemedicine assessments were

relatively easy to implement in our program and improved access and quality care to patients with co-occurring disorders in rural populations. This has led to the development and implementation of Latino clinics, staffed by a bilingual and culturally competent team, in existing agency locations. Additionally, we are expanding current free and confidential, 24-hour crisis intervention services that will be accessible to non-English, primarily Spanish-speaking, tri-county citizens in crisis, regardless of their documentation status.

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe the barriers to treatment and challenges facing vulnerable populations, particularly rural and Spanish-speaking populations. 2. Discuss the value of a telemedicine model for working with rural and Spanish-speaking populations. 3.Identify creative and promising treatment approaches for rural and Spanish-speaking populations

Keywords: Treatment Efficacy, Special Populations

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a licensed, certified clinician (LCAS, CCS) and am a researcher with knowledge of the content. I have written and published in the area.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.