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Ethnic Psychopharmacology

Regina Hill, J.D., Center for Public Representation

Ethnic psychopharmacology is the influence of ethnicity and culture on individual responses to psychotropic medications. Ethnicity and culture have come to the forefront as factors that may impact the effects of psychotropic medications. African Americans, Asians, Hispanics, and Caucasians have different responses to the same dosages of common psychotropic medication. Furthermore, recent immigrants from Asia, Africa, and Latin American countries have different responses to psychotropic mediation, than persons of the same racial background who have lived in this country for many years. Research in this area found both biological and environmental differences among ethnicities play major roles in an individual's response to psychotropic medications. This session will provide a summary of the research that has been done in the area as well as a discussion of the ways this information can be used when advocating for clients around medication issues.