Advanced Social Welfare Practice: Psychopharmacology

Description: Lecture, two and one half hours. Offers distinctive social work/social welfare approach to psychopharmacology and psychiatric medications by emphasizing systems thinking, critical thinking, working with clients as partners, and social justice. Discussion of how psychoactive/psychotropic/psychiatric drugs are named and classified, and how they are studied and approved by FDA. Review of current effectiveness and safety data (and placebo effects) for main classes of drugs, and highlighting of current crisis of confidence in field. Brief summaries of basic neurobiological actions of drugs. Examination of previous and emerging roles of social workers around medications, as well as legal and ethical dictates of practice. Four practice skills are taught as essential for beginning social workers: reviewing relevant literature critically, taking psychiatric medication histories, understanding clients' subjective views and meanings of medications, and monitoring medications to reduce harms. Letter grading.

Units: 4.0
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Easiness N/A/ 5
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