Presentations and Awards
Division of Physical Therapy
Prevalence of Implicit Bias in Practicing Physical Therapists
Bria Dunn, SPT, Jennell McIntosh, SPT, & Dana McCarty, PT, DPT, PCS, C/NDT
Introduction: Implicit biases are unconscious or automatic attitudes and stereotypes held towards individuals or groups based on social group membership, categories or traits. These biases can negatively impact healthcare outcomes and most research to date focuses on assessing the levels of implicit biases in physicians and nurses. Little evidence exists regarding implicit bias in physical therapists (PTs).
Deanna Sipes, a third-year DPT student, was one of the 2018 recipients of the Graduate Student University Diversity Award. Deanna was nominated for her dedication to diversity and inclusion by leading community outreach events, promoting diversity and inclusion events, and pushing the DPT faculty to enhance the diversity and inclusion of under-represented minority students and patients in the program. She has started the Diversity and Inclusion Committee in the Student Physical Therapy Association and has worked with the Allied Health Department’s Diversity and Inclusion Leadership Team to recruit, admit, retain, and promote underrepresented minority students at UNC and in the field of physical therapy.
Division of Clinical Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling
Sense of Control Mediates Self-Focused Attention and Social Anxiety in Chinese Adults
Previous studies found that heightened self-focused attention (SFA) played a significant role in generating, maintaining and exacerbating social anxiety (SA). However, limited research has explored its underlying mechanism. Sense of control (SoC), a central and fundamental element of anxiety (Gallagher & Trigg, 2016), might mediate the relationship between SFA and SA.
Barriers To Recruitment, Engagement And Retention Of Suicidal Individuals In Clinical Research
Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States. It is important to establish effective treatments and prevention efforts. Progression toward these goals has been stagnant because it difficult to recruit representative samples of suicidal individuals in studies. By describing the results of recruitment efforts in a clinical trial examining the role of ovarian hormones in female suicidality, this study aimed to clarify the barriers to recruitment of women with suicidality in research. We hypothesized that barriers to recruitment would be low socioeconomic status, negative attitudes toward research, more severe clinical presentation, and minority race. We conducted t-tests and chi square analyses to compare differences in our expected barriers between eligible women who did enroll and eligible women who did not enroll. Only racial minority status was associated with lower enrollment among eligible women. Future research should aim to refine recruitment strategies so that samples accurately reflect an increasingly diverse US population.
Unapologetically Queer: Improving the Therapeutic Alliance and Overall Treatment for Queer Individuals
Following the removal of homosexuality from the DSM (1973) there have been several intellectual/social movements both to pathologize and de-pathologize sexual minorities. Despite the growing acceptance of LGBTQ individuals, the persistence of internalized homophobia as a primary cause of increased mental health concerns, substance abuse, and rates of suicidality in comparison to heterosexuals, further demonstrates the pervasiveness of heteronormativity. By investigating the responses of religious groups, scientific research, mental health providers, and society at large we gain a broader understanding of how the history of pathologizing queer identity may be affecting the therapeutic alliance today.