I decided to interview a clinician at Massachusetts society for the prevention of cruelty to children (MSPCC), which is my internship placement. While I have been working at MSPCC for three years and I have worked in partnership with a clinicians working within in-home therapy cases. There is one clinician in particular who I have learned many lesson from. Her name is Alyssa Zeneits MSW, LCSW and she agreed to let me interview her to gain insight as to what are some difficulties in diagnosing clients. Additionally, I asked her what were some tips she would provide in diagnosing kids. She has been working at MSPCC as an in-home clinician for three years and before then she worked at a residential program for an agency called Key Behavior services for 2 years. While she is transitioning now to mental health consultation, she has a wealth of experience in working with kids and adolescents in individual and family therapy.
I took a more conversational approach as we work together and she expressed that she felt more comfortable if we talked about these concepts. She did not mind that I took notes while we had the conversation.
To start, I asked her “what is the first thing that comes to mind in diagnosing kids?”, she mentioned that it is at times difficult. While MSPCC provides close supervision when assessing a client, it is at times nerve-wracking to diagnose a kid with the amount of information she has gathered during the intake process.
She stated “when I started working in in-home therapy cases, it was nerve wracking to have to complete so much paperwork, and gather enough information from the family to be able to give a proper diagnosis”.
At this point I mentioned that I had never seen her nervous while gathering t...
... middle of paper ...
...ake a major focus during your work as we need to take consideration of different layers of variables that can cause presenting symptoms.
Lastly, an important theme of this conversation was that we need to look at the functionality of the diagnosing. We need to look at how providing this diagnosis can help kids develop in a positive way. This could be manifested in the type of treatment this diagnosis requires. For example, When I think of ADHD in kids I usually look towards behavioral intervention as well as family work. looking at the functionality of diagnosing I can also assess for complementary services like having a psychiatrist if medication is an option or a therapeutic mentor for social skills.
Working closely with Alyssa within in-home therapy case has helped me in understanding how having these lenses to look at diagnosing can help families in need.
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