This paper reflects the intersection of three cultures: the rave (all night dance party and use of the drug, Ecstasy) culture; the ward culture of an inpatient psychiatric program for First Episode Psychosis; the spirit healing culture of the Philippines. All three intersected in Toronto, Canada in the mid 1990s, as illustrated by the clinical case of a 19-year-old university student who was hospitalized with symptoms of drug-induced psychosis. Her initial treatment was not successful and presented dilemmas for the treating staff. Transfer to a second psychiatric facility that permitted attendance at a traditional Filipino healing ceremony resulted in a cure, with no recurrence 10 years later. According to James Dow's 1986 formulation, the components of the key spiritual healing session paralleled the very elements the young woman had sought by participating in raves, an activity that was problematic because it led to family displeasure. Whereas attendance at a rave triggered illness, the healing session, sanctioned by her family and taking place in their midst, resulted in healing.
To explore the experiences of health care practitioners working with Aboriginal clients recovering from acquired brain injury (ABI).
Participatory research design using qualitative methods.
Fourteen in-depth, semi-structured interviews were conducted. The Framework Method of analysis was used to uncover emerging themes.
Five main categories emerged: practitioners' experience with brain injury, practitioners' experience with Aboriginal clients, specialized needs of Aboriginal clients recovering from brain injury, culturally sensitive care and traditional healing methods. These categories were then further divided into emergent themes and sub-themes where applicable, with particular emphasis on the specialized needs of Aboriginal clients.
Each emergent theme highlighted key challenges experienced by Aboriginal peoples recovering from ABI. A key challenge was that protocols for rehabilitation and discharge planning are often lacking for clients living on reserves or in remote communities. Other challenges included lack of social support; difficulty of travel and socio-cultural factors associated with post-acute care; and concurrent disorders.
Results suggest that developing reasonable protocols for discharge planning of Aboriginal clients living on reserves and/or remote communities should be considered a priority.