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Spirituality & Mental Health: What Clinicians Need to Know

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Spirituality & Mental Health: What Clinicians Need to Know 

featuring David Rosmarin, PhD, ABPP

Even in this secular age, more than eight in ten people worldwide identify with a religious group (Pew Research Center, 2010), and more than nine in ten Americans profess belief in God or a higher power (Gallup Poll, 2011). Furthermore, consistent research highlights that spirituality/religion can have both positive and negative effects on mental health, and that it is very common for individuals to turn to this domain in coping with distress (Pargament, Koenig & Perez, 2000). For these and other reasons, the statistical majority of psychotherapy patients profess a desire to discuss spirituality with their clinicians (Rose, Westefeld, & Ansley, 2001). However, due to a lack of training most clinicians lack core competencies in how to address spiritual issues in treatment. As a result, this important aspect of patient diversity is often ignored in clinical practice, creating unnecessary barriers to accessing evidence-based treatment.

This webinar discusses the basics what clinicians need to know about spirituality as it pertains to mental health treatment. Attendees will learn how to conceptualize the clinical relevance of spiritual life based on current research. Attendees will also emerge with concrete skills in how to conduct a brief evidence-based assessment of this domain in the context of treatment for anxiety, depression, and other presenting problems.

Learning Objectives

At the end of this webinar, participants will be able to…

1) Describe positive and negative effects of spirituality on mental health
2) How to formulate spiritual aspects of patients lives in clinically meaningful terms
3) How to conduct a brief evidence-based assessment of patient spirituality in the context of treatment