attributes needed to become a competent health psychologist

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In 2,000-2,500-words, describe the attributes needed to become a competent health psychologist. Consider including information on counseling techniques, necessary personal characteristics, professional ethics, knowledge of health care and treatment methods, etc. Your answers should show an understanding of the future of health psychology.

Discuss the experience of a patient in the health care system.

Choose a specific health issue and then discuss the challenges patients with this health issue face when trying to:

  1. Form relationships with their health care providers
  2. Navigate the health care system
  3. Gain information about their health
  4. Adhere to treatment.

Discuss why the attributes you suggested are important. How will these attributes help you to become a successful professional in the field?

Recommend what health psychologists can do to improve patient experiences in any of these areas.

Use six to ten scholarly resources to support your explanations.

Prepare this assignment according to the guidelines found in the APA Style Guide, located in the Student Success Center. An abstract is not required.

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Explanation & Answer

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Health Psychology
Student’s Name
Professor’s Name
Course Title



Health psychologists are responsible for monitoring the psychological and behavioral
behaviors that affect the health of a patient. They check how psychological, cultural and
behavioral factors affect the health and the illness of the patients. Patients who are facing certain
health issues find it difficult to interact and form relationships with their health care providers.
These challenges faced by the patients result in their slow recovery. It is, therefore, necessary for
health psychologists to have the necessary skills and attributes such as good communication
skills, trustworthiness, ethics, patience and education that will assist them in assisting patients in
the challenges they overcome while dealing with their health care providers.
In this assignment, I will focus on a patient who is dealing with drug and substance abuse
addiction and is having challenges when relating to the health care provider. Drug abuse is the
continuous excessive consumption and use of drugs that are harmful to the health of a particular
person. The patient, in this case, is addicted to alcohol and other hard drugs such as cocaine. The
patient has been seeking treatment for the addiction from the local health care center. The patient
is required to receive medical and psychological treatment to assist them with their addiction.
The patient is expected to undergo behavioral psychology therapy, contingency management and
exposure therapy among other psychological treatments which are aimed at assisting in the
mental anxiety and suppression for cravings, improving the patient’s focus on getting better
while acquiring other behavioral skill, assisting with the management of the withdrawal
symptoms and reducing the chances of the patient’s relapse (Sauter & Hurrell, 2017). The
patients are also required to receive medication such as buprenorphine that will assist them in
stopping their addiction, managing the withdrawal symptoms and preventing relapse. The
patients, however, face many challenges when trying to receive health care.



Patients who are facing drug and substance addiction often experience challenges when
they are trying to form relationships with their healthcare providers. These challenges include
mistrust between the health care provider and the patient, stigmatization of the patients, lack of a
standard treatment approach and poor communication (Bell et al., 2017). For patients who have
been going through drug and substance withdrawal, they often face challenges when trying to
build trust between themselves and their health care providers. Most of the health care providers
usually have a negative and premeditated opinion about the patient. They, therefore, have

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