Professionals working in the field

i. Psychiatrist

Health professional with a degree in Medicine and specialization in Psychiatry, a branch dedicated to the study, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of mental illnesses and disorders.

Psychiatry, whose practice extends beyond 100 years, only became recognized as a medical specialty at the beginning of the 20th century. From this point on, mental disorders began to be analyzed within the framework of medical sciences. One of the main responsible for this paradigm shift was Emil Kraepelin (1856-1926), who is therefore considered by many as the father of modern psychiatry.8

The way of acting of the psychiatrist differs from the other health professionals who work in the area of ​​diseases and mental disorders, because they work within the scope of medical practice, which means that they prepare medical diagnoses and define treatment plans that extend from the field of pharmacological to the psychosocial domain.

ii. Psychologist

His work focuses on the elaboration of psychological diagnoses and the application of psychological treatments, being an indispensable professional in a health team in the field of Psychiatry. He is responsible for the diagnosis and intervention in the psychosocial domain of mental disorders.9

iii. Psychotherapist

This is any professional with basic training in the clinical domain (medicine, psychology, nursing, etc.), but who has additional and specific training in intervention based on different models of psychotherapeutic intervention. Psychotherapies are forms of intervention that, according to the medical and psychological diagnosis, can be applied alone or together with other treatments, namely pharmacological.9

iv. Occupational Therapist

An occupational therapist is a technician who, through the organization of recreational activities or not, promotes the functional integration of a patient and, in this sense, contributes to the treatment of the patient. Supported by a functional diagnosis, the occupational therapist is a very important health professional for the recovery of the person with mental disorder. It uses specific methodologies and techniques to promote the restoration and maximum use of functions altered by the disease or to stimulate functions that are still preserved.9

v. Nurse

The nurse with the specialty of psychiatry is one of the key elements in the treatment of patients with psychiatric disorders, whether in an outpatient or inpatient setting. In an inpatient regime, the specialist nurse in psychiatry, based on the behavioral diagnosis, assesses the patient’s evolution and applies the measures defined in the therapeutic plan, whether of a pharmacological or behavioral nature, in addition to promoting the integration of the patient in his/her new ecological environment – ​​the psychiatric ward. On an outpatient basis, the specialist nurse in psychiatry plays a decisive role in both the promotion of Mental Health and the prevention of mental disorders.10