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WAFCA-CE April 4, 2019 Confusing Clusters: Ambiguity in Diagnosis and Treatment in Mental Health Care
Waukesha County Technical College
800 Main Street
Pewaukee, WI 53072
United States
2626915566

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Thursday, April 04, 2019, 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM CST
Category: WAFCA CE Training


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Confusing Clusters: Ambiguity in Diagnosis and Treatment in Mental Health Care: Affective Disorders, ADHD, Borderline Personality, Trauma

There is a significant amount of uncertainty in mental health work due to our poor understanding of the causes of mental illness and the lack of biologic markers indicating the presence of any disorder. We are left with trying to identify DSM-5 syndromes – clusters of behaviors and emotional experiences that cause distress which we label as mental illnesses. Given the lack of robust criteria, clinicians are often faced with “confusing clusters” - disorders that overlap and treatments that seem to be treating “everything.” This workshop will address the confusions that arise in diagnosing and treating disorders in one of those clusters. 

Workshop Outline

  • What’s wrong with us?
  • Breaking down “Major Depression”
  • The many types of Bipolar Disorder
  • The “Bipolar Spectrum?”
  • Youth: ADHD, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, Bipolar Disorder, Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder
  • The problem of Borderline Personality Disorder and Trauma Disorders
  • Treatments

Learning Objectives

At the end of this program, participants will be able to:

  1. Discuss the reasons that the boundaries between psychiatric illnesses remain confusing and the diagnoses often remain unclear
  2. Examine specific diagnoses where uncertainty is particularly high and discuss relevant clinical findings and diagnostic scales
  3. List the non-specific treatment effects of various medications that can be used for a number of different illnesses
  4. Evaluate the accuracy of the diagnoses of their clients

 About the Presenter

 Photo of David MaysDr. David Mays, M.D., Ph.D., is a licensed physician in the state of Wisconsin. He is Board Certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. He has a dual appointment as a clinical adjunct assistant professor in the University of Wisc. Dept. of Psychiatry and Department of Professional Development and Applied Studies.

He is a Distinguished Life Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association, member the Wisconsin Psychiatric Association, and a member of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law. Over the last 23 years, Dr, Mays has practiced psychiatry in a variety of settings, including an HMO, an assertive community treatment program, private clinical and forensic practice, and as the clinical director of the forensic program at the Mendota Mental Health Institute. This forensic program is a 180-bed program with the only maximum-security forensic unit in the state of Wisconsin. Dr. Mays was the treating psychiatrist on the most restrictive unit in maximum security, housing some of the most dangerous psychiatric patients in the state.

Dr. Mays has received numerous awards for his teaching and clinical work, including the Distinguished Service Award from the Alliance on Mental Illness in Dane County, the Exemplary Psychiatrist Award from the National Alliance on Mental Illness, the Exceptional Performance Award from the Wisconsin Health and Family Services, the 2006 Outstanding Professional Award from the Wisconsin Association on Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse, and the 2010 Outstanding Mental Health Professional Award from the Wisconsin National Alliance on Mental Illness. He is a highly sought-after presenter on numerous topics in mental health, including psychiatric diagnosis and treatment, personality disorders, suicide and aggression risk management, mainstream and alternative treatments in psychiatry, and the biology of ethics.

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WAFCA has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider. ACEP No. 6778. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. WAFCA is solely responsible for all aspects of the program.


Contact: Rachel Kruse: [email protected], 608.257.5939