Intake Interview Essay

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An intake interview is primarily an assessment tool designed to answer critical questions that will direct future interventions and treatment of clients (Sommers-Flanagan & Sommers-Flanagan, 2003). While the central function of an intake interview is to obtain information from the patient, by the time the interview is done, a basis for a good working relationship should also have been established through the development of rapport and therapeutic alliance (Morrison, 2008). The main objectives of the intake interview include identifying the client’s chief complaint or presenting concern, establishing treatment goals, obtaining personal history and a sense of interpersonal style and skills of the client, evaluating the client’s current situation…show more content…
This can be done with a bridging question that asks the client to give the counsellor and idea of why they’ve chosen to come to counselling at this particular stage (Sommers-Flanagan & Sommers-Flanagan, 2003). This allows a smooth transition from problem to person (Sommers-Flanagan & Sommers-Flanagan, 2003). The information obtained concerning the client’s history should include everything that bears on the client’s life and mental health problems (Morrison, 2008). History taking should begin non-directively to allow clients to reveal significant information following which guidance and structure can be given to get answers to more specific questions about a client’s past (Sommers-Flanagan & Sommers-Flanagan, 2003). Working through a personal or psychosocial history needs to be treated with sensitivity and an understanding that clients may have a difficult time opening up about certain past memories. Intake interviews are not designed to dig deeply into traumatic experiences. Effective intake interviewers give clients the opportunity to disclose traumatic experiences, but do not require it (Sommers-Flanagan & Sommers-Flanagan, 2003). After allowing clients to freely discuss their history, it is helpful to ask specific questions to obtain a lifeline of historical events (Sommers-Flanagan & Sommers-Flanagan,

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