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Assessing Mental Health Across Cultures


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Lena Andary is a clinical psychologist who has worked with mental health services since 1992, including acute psychiatric inpatient units, crisis assessment and treatment teams and outpatient clinics. At the time of writing her position was as Ethnic Mental Health Consultant, which involved assisting mental health services in the Eastern Region and Inner South of Melbourne to improve their responsiveness to consumers from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. Lena's work has included the development and implementation of policy, research, training and education of mental health clinicians and community development. Her particular area of interest has been the clinical implications of working with persons from linguistically and culturally diverse backgrounds in terms of assessment, understanding and treatment. Lena is also a member of the Australian Centre for Psychoanalysis and teaches part of the Graduate Diploma in Community Mental Health offered by Melbourne University.

Yvonne Stolk is a clinical psychologist who worked for 8 years in community and inpatient mental health settings. Since 1997 she has been employed by NorthWestern Mental Health as an Ethnic Mental Health Consultant, working with mental health services in the Western Region of Melbourne to increase sensitivity of staff to clients of cultural and linguistic diversity and to improve access to services by ethnic communities. The training program that formed the basis of this book was developed collaboratively with Yvonne's co-authors in response to training needs identified as part of research she is undertaking for her PhD with the Centre International Mental Health, Department of Psychiatry, University of Melbourne. She was a contributing author to The Price of Freedom: Young Indochinese Refugees in Australia, edited by Krupinski and Burrows in 1986. In addition to a number of journal articles and research reports, Yvonne co-authored Not the Marrying Kind: Single Women in Australia, in 1983, which was based on research for her Master's thesis.

Steven Klimidis was awarded his PhD at the Australian National University in the field of clinical psychology in 1989. In the past decade he has worked as a clinical psychologist in private practice and within public health agencies. He has acted as consultant to numerous projects ranging from mental health promotion, service models development and clinical services evaluation. He has authored research papers, book chapters and reports in areas as diverse as psychiatric epidemiology, the phenomenology of psychoses, evaluation of health care services and transcultural mental health. Steven's research has more recently concentrated on how culture might be best conceptualised as it affects the nature of psychological distress, the help-seeking process and the therapeutic relationship. Currently he is the Assistant Director and Co-ordinator of Research of the Victorian Transcultural Psychiatry Unit and holds the position of Associate Professor in the Centre for International Mental Health, Department of Psychiatry, University of Melbourne.

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