General Practitioners and mental health: Episode Notes
When we experience mental health issues for the first time, we usually turn to General Practitioners (GPs) for professional advice.
Depending on our doctors’ specialization however, we may not always find the answers we are looking for. Why is that?
In this episode of the Stepsero podcast, we adopt the perspective of a general practitioner, thanks to the intervention of Gustavo Vidal, a digital health professional trained as a Medical Doctor.
On top of that, Gustavo gives us a glimpse into his experience working with victims of trauma and torture in refugee camps.
Below are a few takeaways from our interview:
- General practitioners are experts in treating organic diseases, where physical or physiological changes can be assessed and measured.
- Due to their training, general practitioners may not always be able to treat psychosomatic disorders. Unfortunately, this often results in a very unsatisfactory experience for both the doctors and their patients.
- General practitioners operate under serious time constraints. Because of this, once they have addressed all organic aspects, they might not have the chance to dig deep into their patients’ overall psychological attitudes.
- When no evident organic alterations are found, GPs consider the problem to be a psychological one. At this point, they may refer their patients to a psychologist or a psychiatrist.
- Lately, science is bridging the gap between organic and functional medicine, by showing a clear connection between pathological and organic disorders.
Our Guest: Gustavo Vidal
Gustavo Vidal sees himself as a ‘Jack of all trades and a master of none’. One of his many interests lies in the field of psychology, which has been deepened by his experience working with victims of trauma and torture on several international missions with Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF, also known by the English name ‘Doctors Without Borders’).
Trained as a Medical Doctor, he has worked as a clinician as well as on the supervising side of projects, managing projects and teams in a variety of contexts.
Currently, his responsibilities involve managing a team of medical doctors developing medical artificial intelligence in the field of digital health.