Monday, December 12, 2005

Underground DSM-IV: The Professions

New social workers want to intervene in everything at once: couples counseling, substance rehab, going on disability, finding a self-help group, etc. This is the human services equivalent of invading not only Afghanistan and Iraq, but North Korea, China, France, Mexico, and the Maldive Islands, all at once,

If you suggest this to social workers, they won’t understand the analogy, noting irrelevantly that they were against going into Iraq.

If a social worker has arranged a placement with only a small window of availability, the patient automatically becomes clinically ready to go, and you’d damn well better agree. Otherwise, the SW will bite your head off the next time you ask about discharging someone.

When Psych Nurses say, “He needs to be discharged,” they mean “I want him discharged.”

When psychiatrists are finished with med changes, they conclude the patient is at baseline, independent of any data.

When anything changes, the psychologist will find a way to interpret it as progress.

The difficulty with being a Psychiatric Aide is the social and emotional battering they receive from both patients and ungrateful staff. Stress reduction classes make this worse. Encouragement might work, but no one’s ever tried it.


Helen said...


So you work as a psych tech? You must see a little bit of everything. Many of my patients have told me that the janitors and housekeeping staff provided better treatment than some of the doctors or social workers did. At least perhaps they really understood some of the symptoms and pain some of the mentally ill were going through. Does your hospital keep patients for any length of time? I can't get anyone more than a week,it seems.

Assistant Village Idiot said...

No, social worker. I started out as a psych tech years ago.

the shrink said...

Well you certainly shed a whole different light on that profession. I have worked with many social workers; some of them had the narrowest vision possible, all they cared about is filling in section papers and getting the patient admitted. Some of them actually cared and listened to what other professionals had to say.
Having said that, your line of work is not easy, the amount of paper work, the so many million protocols and the mass communication to get each mission accomplished; I salute you.