Cultural Formulation

DOI: 10.1176/appi.books.9780890425596.886032



Understanding the cultural context of illness experience is essential for effective diagnostic assessment and clinical management. Culture refers to systems of knowledge, concepts, rules, and practices that are learned and transmitted across generations. Culture includes language, religion and spirituality, family structures, life-cycle stages, ceremonial rituals, and customs, as well as moral and legal systems. Cultures are open, dynamic systems that undergo continuous change over time; in the contemporary world, most individuals and groups are exposed to multiple cultures, which they use to fashion their own identities and make sense of experience. These features of culture make it crucial not to overgeneralize cultural information or stereotype groups in terms of fixed cultural traits.

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Cultural Formulation Interview (CFI)
Cultural Formulation Interview (CFI)—Informant Version


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