Contextual and Culturally-Relevant Considerations for Assessment and Treatment with Indigenous Individuals
Indigenous individuals in Canada experience disproportionately higher rates of mental health and substance use concerns when compared to non-Indigenous individuals in Canada. These concerns are further exacerbated by disparities with access to social determinants of health that have been aggravated by systemic marginalization, discrimination, and racism within broader health systems. Such experiences can impede access to timely, pertinent, and trusted psychological practices within Indigenous communities. Dr. Toombs and Dr. Lund will discuss evidence-based and practical considerations within generalist assessment and treatment practices that may increase the cultural-relevance and uptake of psychological interventions with Indigenous individuals. They will share relevant experiences from their clinical and research expertise working with First Nation communities in the Robinson Superior Treaty Area, including assessment of adverse childhood experiences, embedding two-eyed seeing approaches within case conceptualization, and useful culture-as-treatment models of care.
About the Presenters
Dr. Elaine Toombs is a Canadian Institutes of Health Research Banting postdoctoral fellow and adjunct professor in the Department of Psychology at Lakehead University. Her research primarily focuses on First Nations mental health using community-based methods, including how eHealth interventions can be used in a culturally-relevant manner with Indigenous people seeking treatment for substance use. As a co-investigator of a Canadian Institutes of Health Research project grant, she examines how adverse childhood experiences may affect psychological and physical health outcomes with First Nations people in residential treatment. Dr. Toombs has presented her research at various local, national, and international scientific assemblies. Most recently, through her work as an appointed delegate in the upcoming Science Meets Parliament program in May 2023, she will consult with Members of Parliament to develop a shared understanding of how better support the translation of research into federal policy making efforts. In addition to her academic work, Dr. Toombs is a registered clinical psychologist at Dilico Anishinabek Family Care and provides on-reserve assessment, intervention, and consultation services for First Nation children, adolescents, and adults.
Dr. Jessie Lund is a clinical psychologist under supervised practice with the Operational Stress Injury Clinic at the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre. Dr. Lund completed her doctoral training in Northwestern Ontario with a focus on examining the underlying mechanisms linking childhood adversity to substance use difficulties among First Nations adults as well as developing culturally informed adaptations to evidence-based treatments for First Nations adolescents and adults.
Continuing Education Information
1 CE Credit, Instructional Level: Intermediate
1 Contact Hour (New York Board of Psychology)
- Identify rates and contributing factors of mental health disparities experienced among Indigenous communities.
- Discuss evidence based and culturally-relevant psychological assessment and treatment approaches used within Indigenous communities.
- Describe trauma-informed care within an Indigenous context.
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Webinar start time is 2:00pm ET/1pm CT/12pm MT/11am PT