Cultural Competence and Caring for Individuals with First-Episode Psychosis and their Families

This webinar was presented by representatives from OnTrackNY, a coordinated specialty care (CSC) program that provides early intervention services to individuals experiencing a first-episode psychosis (FEP).  The speakers will discuss the cultural competency approach used by the OnTrackNY team, focusing on the development and implementation of two main components: the DSM-5 Cultural Formulation Interview (CFI) and the OnTrackNY “Guidelines of Best Practices on Culture and FEP.” The CFI is a standardized set of questions for conducting a cultural assessment during a diagnostic interview, which was developed for DSM-5 by an international team of collaborators (led by an OnTrackNY consultant); it is used in the initial assessment of every FEP participant. The Best Practices guideline was developed by a collaborative of OnTrackNY teams, which identified common cultural themes encountered when working with clients and families and developed a set of case examples and best practices for delivering FEP care.


The speakers will describe how local clinical teams applying the FEP model can use these cultural competency practices in their own settings. The webinar will cover strategies for effectively working with individuals and families with diverse religious beliefs, varying levels of acculturation, language barriers, and cultural issues specific to adolescents and young adults. Another key element of the presentation will involve how to address cultural aspects of gender and sexuality in the care of early psychosis, including working with individuals who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT), or who are exploring their gender identity or sexual orientation.