Black Experiences in Academic Psychiatry
The objective of this article is to examine the experiences and challenges faced by Black professionals in the academic psychiatry workforce. The authors used data collected from previous literature to explore experiences faced at each level of the academic psychiatry pipeline. Review of the literature revealed that systemic barriers contribute to burnout, high turnover, and underrepresentation of Black professionals in academic psychiatry. Retention of Black mental health professionals is fostered by institutional support and interventions that address racism and promote growth and development at every level. While there appears to be a growing body of literature in social medical and popular press, peer-reviewed literature on the experiences of Black trainees and professionals in academic psychiatry is still limited. Additional studies, including systematic data collection among Black psychiatrists, psychologists, faculty, and clinical support staff in academic settings, are needed to continue to examine experiences related to race and racism along the educational and professional workforce continuum. [Psychiatr Ann. 2022;52(12):509-513.].
Explanations Underlying the Lack of Utility of Diagnostic Depression Scales in Black Americans
Major depression disorder is one of the most common mental disorders in the United States. However, Black Americans are often underdiagnosed, misdiagnosed, or not treated for depression. Limited research has been conducted on the utility of diagnostic tools in identifying depression in the Black community and could explain lack of research and public health attention to mental illness in this population. Other explanations discussed include greater ability to cope with stressful situations and the myth of the "˜resiliency expectation,"™ social activism and positive health outcomes, and lack of trust in institutions due to structural and interpersonal racism. Further research that provides contextualized results is warranted to better understand and recognize symptoms of depression, and development of more effective treatment modalities. [Psychiatr Ann. 2022;52(12):504-508.].
A Call to Action
Reckoning with Racism in the Match Process [Editorial]
Black Experiences in Academic Psychiatry
Acting against racism in departments of psychiatry
In the midst of an unprecedented social movement against racism in America and call to action for all organizational sectors, medicine, both academia and practice, has become a salient focus during this time given the impact of racism on our nation"™s health. Academic departments of psychiatry, in particular, should be at the forefront of these efforts and have high potential to enact change and lead interventions across their wider institutions. We begin this article by describing the role of race and the impact of structural racism on Black patients and faculty. We go on to discuss the many complex challenges presented by the task of dismantling racist structures in order to build just organizational norms. Finally, we offer initial strategies toward racial equity modeled after those we are implementing and evaluating in our own department.
Racial disparities in perinatal mental health
Black, Latinx, and Indigenous women in need of perinatal mental health services encounter the intersection of disparities in both obstetric care and mental health care. It is essential that psychiatrists gain an understanding of the historic and remaining structural elements that may affect the quality of care provided to pregnant and pe-ripartum Black, Latinx and Indigenous patients. In this article, we briefly dis-cuss the historic context of structural racism in reproductive care. We then describe the current state of racial disparities in perinatal mental health. This is followed by a description of the structural elements that reinforce the effect of racism in perinatal men-tal health care as well as brief recom-mendations to begin to address these structures. The article begins and ends with illustrative cases describing the toll exacted by racial disparities and the potential remedies.
Race and psychiatry: A necessary conversation