Experiences of schizophrenia are not homogeneous

Experiences of schizophrenia are not homogeneous; there is wide variety in onset, course of illness, and combinations of symptoms. Social workers need to be able to understand the different manifestations and pathways of the illness to plan interventions. Social work services play a key role in stabilizing crises, supporting family coping, and influencing overall quality of life and outcomes of individuals with schizophrenia. In this Assignment, you practice applying this necessary individualization.

To prepare: In the Learning Resources, focus on the associated features, development, and course of the illnesses in the schizophrenia spectrum. Also focus on descriptions of the disorder and the way it develops for different individuals.

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Experiences of schizophrenia are not homogeneous
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Choose two articles from the list in the Learning Resources that apply to treatment support and interventions for the schizophrenia spectrum. Access the Walden Library and research additional peer-reviewed articles.

By Day 7

Submit a 3- to 4-page paper, supported by at least 3–4 scholarly resources (including both required and additional resources), in which you address the following:

  • Compare Saks’s and McGough’s experiences with schizophrenia, specifically referencing the positive and negative symptoms they each experienced.
  • Explain how you would use the Clinician Rated Dimensions of Psychosis Symptom Severity measure and the WHODAS to help confirm your diagnosis.
  • Identify in what ways their cases are typical or atypical of the illness in terms of onset, associated features, development, and course. Support your response with references to scholarly resources.
  • Explain how you would plan treatment and individualize it for these two individuals. Support your response with references to scholarly resources. In your explanation, consider the following questions:
    • What are the long-term challenges for someone living with the illness?
    • What social, family, vocational, and medical supports are needed for long-term stabilization?
    • How might treatment look similar or different for Saks and McGough, given they have the same diagnosis?
  • Briefly explain how race/ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, religion, or other identity characteristics may influence an individual’s experience with schizophrenia.

USE THESE ARTICLES FOR THE ASSIGNMENT:

Velthorst, E., Fett, A.-K. J., Reichenberg, A., Perlman, G., van Os, J., Bronet, E. J., & Kotov, R. (2017). The 20-year longitudinal trajectories of social functioning in individuals with psychotic disorders. American Journal of Psychiatry, 174(11), 1075–1085. doi:10.1176/appi.ajp.2016.15111419

Walsh, J., Hochbrueckner, R., Corcoran, J., & Spence, R. (2016). The lived experience of schizophrenia: A systematic review and meta-synthesis. Social Work in Mental Health, 14(6), 607–624. doi:10.1080/15332985.2015.1100153

Velthorst, E., Fett, A.-K. J., Reichenberg, A., Perlman, G., van Os, J., Bronet, E. J., & Kotov, R. (2017). The 20-year longitudinal trajectories of social functioning in individuals with psychotic disorders. American Journal of Psychiatry, 174(11), 1075–1085. doi:10.1176/appi.ajp.2016.15111419

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