WHAT CAN MENTAL HEALTH PROFESSIONALS DO TO ADDRESS HEALTH DISPARITIES IN THE WAKE OF THIS PANDEMIC?
As this crisis persists, we need to be more circumspect about the mental, physical, emotional, behavioral, and economic hardships of our patients and work to build our capacity to better serve the needs of health disparate populations. We offer the following suggestions:
Communicate clearly about risks and strategies to keep safe from the virus
Connect your patients with community resources (e.g., food banks, health services)
Educate yourself and other health professionals about the historical and systemic contributions to health disparities
Check your biases and redress mislabeling and misinformation
Participate/train in telehealth to provide continuity of care and expand our reach
Consider offering pro bono mental health services