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Psychiatrist » Overview

Psychiatrist

Psychiatrists assess and provide treatment for people with mental, emotional and behavioural disorders. They also study how the brain and nervous systems function and how these interact with people's environments and affect the way people think, feel and behave. They study patients' medical and psychiatric histories and work with patients and their families/whānau to understand patients' likely responses to treatment. They are highly trained professionals who are trusted by the patients in their care. Many of the people they deal with have suffered trauma or are dealing with difficult personal challenges. Psychiatrists need sensitivity and discretion when it comes to these things. They need to be non-judgmental and able to offer help without laying blame. Some clients may need extra support from other people in the community.

Psychiatrists are able to refer them to other agencies or support workers when it comes to aspects outside of their training. Psychiatrists may also work as counselors or psychotherapists. They work alongside parents, whānau, community workers, police and sometimes legal professionals to help their clients. They may work one-on-one with their clients in a psychiatry practice, or in a group setting. Their work also involves scientific analysis of behaviour and brain function and the ability to report on changes in behaviour or physical changes. Psychologists need to be genuinely concerned about the wellbeing of their clients.