New York State Medical Treatment Guidelines for History and Psychological / Psychiatric Examination in workers compensation patients

The guidelines from the New York State Workers Compensation Board present general principles for conducting History and Psychological/Psychiatric Examination. These directives aim to assist healthcare professionals in determining appropriate strategies for gathering patient history and conducting mental health assessments as part of a comprehensive evaluation process.

Healthcare practitioners specializing in History and Psychological/Psychiatric Examination can rely on the guidance from the Workers Compensation Board to make well-informed decisions about the most suitable approaches for assessing the psychological and psychiatric aspects of their patients.

It is crucial to emphasize that these guidelines are not intended to replace clinical judgment or professional expertise. The ultimate decision regarding History and Psychological/Psychiatric Examination should involve collaboration between the patient and their healthcare provider.

Getting Started

The first phase involves delving into the patient’s history comprehensively. We kick things off by understanding the exposure to trauma, figuring out how severe it was, and gauging how immediate or real it felt for the individual. When dealing with ASD or PTSD, the severity aligns with criteria from the [DSM-5], focusing on experiences involving death, serious injury, or sexual violence. We dive into various aspects like their current living situation, job, education, social interactions, substance use, and childhood experiences. The examination extends to both physical and mental symptoms, leaving no stone unturned.


Types of Measures for PTSD Screening and Testing

When it comes to gauging PTSD, there are three primary kinds of psychological assessments: screening tools, outcome measures, and psychometric testing batteries, also known as psychological inventories. Screening tools aim to spot symptoms that hint at a possible diagnosis, signaling the need for further assessment by a mental health professional to confirm the condition.

Remember, a screening assessment doesn’t give a final verdict but acts as a signal that a more in-depth clinical evaluation is required before a definitive diagnosis. An outcome measure keeps tabs on aspects of a condition that can change with treatment.

Following screening, individuals suspected of having PTSD might undergo a thorough evaluation to guide appropriate treatment. Some might even take psychometric tests using psychological inventories. These inventories are comprehensive measures designed to paint a detailed picture of the patient, capturing a range of traits deemed relevant to the psychological assessment.

When conducting a psychological evaluation, the mental health professional typically engages in an interview and utilizes one or more psychological or biopsychological inventories. These tools help assess various aspects, such as personality traits, common indicators of psychiatric syndromes, coping styles (both physical and psychological), and the dynamics of social support and conflicts.

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