Assessment and Diagnosis Essay examples

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Assessment and Diagnosis The purpose of this paper is to provide a synopsis of the importance of assessment and diagnosis in the counseling process. In the first two sections, the roles of assessment and diagnosis as they relate to case conceptualization and treatment planning will be explored. The potential implications of misdiagnosis will be the focus of the final section. Assessment Becoming acquainted with a potential client’s history, personality and present concerns is necessary in forming a foundation for counseling interventions. This information gathering phase is referred to as assessment (Mears, 2010). While some mental health professionals will use an interview as their primary assessment tool, others will utilize testing…show more content…
Diagnosis While mental health professionals have had mixed feelings about the use of diagnostic labels in counseling, the diagnosis is another common outcome of the assessment process. Mears (2010) reports the advantage of diagnostic classifications as their usefulness in written and verbal interactions about the specific problems a client might experience. An example of this is when a diagnosis documented in a case conceptualization or treatment plan increases the ease of communication between clinicians or billing agencies. Applying a diagnosis to a client’s profile has complications as well. The labeling of a client with a diagnosis related to mental illness can have negative effects on his or her self esteem and also result in insurance and employment issues (Mears, 2010). Without careful attention to issues of culture and social justice in a person’s life, responses to oppression can be improperly diagnosed (Mears, 2010). A woman who is diagnosed with an anxiety disorder without exploration into the fact that she is being sexually harassed at work would be an example of this issue. Misdiagnosis Whether intentional or unintentional, the misdiagnosis of client concerns is a problem that can have implications for counselors and clients. Mead (1997) reported the
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