A Danish centre contributed 12 cases to a Nordic multicentre investigation concerning the psychotherapy of psychoses. Patients admitted consecutively to the psychiatric hospital with the diagnoses of schizophrenia, schizophreniform psychosis or schizoaffective psychosis were offered psychotherapy at least once weekly for two years in addition to the other treatment modalities administered. In the Danish design, the process of supervision in relation to the processes of psychotherapy was investigated. In the present article, examples are presented illustrating how core psychotic mechanisms in the patients are reflected not only in process-facilitating but also in process inhibiting psychotherapeutic interventions. The data of the investigation are these interventions which are written down prospectively in the summaries of the supervision.
In order to determine the residents' perceptions toward their psychotherapy training, a questionnaire was distributed to 400 residents in the 16 Canadian psychiatric residency programs. The main areas studied were: the resident's demographic and educational characteristics; the residency program characteristics; the type of training available in different psychotherapeutic modalities; the analysis of quality and quantity of attention given to different elements of psychotherapy supervision (patient assessment, diagnostic formulation of treatment approach and goals); the degree of importance attributed by the residents to the above mentioned elements of psychotherapy supervision; and the residents' perception of their supervisor's attributes (examples: teaching ability and rapport). Forty-two percent of the residents completed the questionnaire. Residents mentioned that the most adequate supervision was for long-term individual psychotherapy cases and that behavioral and group therapy supervision was the least adequate. The three most essential qualities in a supervisor's profile were judged to be: capacity for the development of a good rapport with the trainee; ability to pinpoint residents' psychotherapy shortcomings and his willingness to help residents to overcome them; ability to teach. Three factors that significantly influenced the trainees perception of their psychotherapy training were: resident's age, a seminar in individual psychotherapy in the residency core program; having received more than one hour weekly of psychotherapy supervision. The understanding of patient's psychodynamics was the most adequately taught element during psychotherapy supervision.
This paper gives a description of a psychosocial/psychoeducational group intervention for individuals with a history of recurrent suicide attempts. The intervention was conceived to reduce the risk of future suicidal behavior and to modify the client's psychopathology. Three features are felt to make the intervention unique from others described in the literature. First, the intervention is targeted at both men and women from an inner-city population who are often underhoused, underemployed, and undereducated. 24 of 48 clients (50%) lived alone, and 24 of those (92%) were living in subsidized housing; 33% lived in supportive housing, and one lived on the street at the time of assessment. 48% had a high-school education or less. Second, the principles of our approach stressed client validation and participation in the development and delivery of the therapy. Our frame of reference was to name ourselves as professionals with a set of skills and access to some kinds of information and clients as the experts on the experience in their lives. Third, the group content incorporated a multimodal approach to meet the varied needs of the clients. Future reports will discuss the empirical evaluation of this intervention; however, the development of specific, targeted approaches for unique individuals with recurrent suicide attempts is clearly needed.
The concept of need-related care for schizophrenia patients, evolved in Abo during the 1980s, consists in a flexible form of psychotherapy oriented care, which in its planning and execution is tailored to meet varying individual needs. It is based both on family and individual therapy and therapeutic groups, drugs being used as support. The results have been promising and it has been possible to reduce hospitalisation.
Comment In: Nord Med. 1993;108(12):326-7, 3298272396
Empirical evidence on whether patients' mental health and functioning will be more improved after long-term than short-term therapy is scarce. We addressed this question in a clinical trial with a long follow-up.
In the Helsinki Psychotherapy Study, 326 out-patients with mood or anxiety disorder were randomly assigned to long-term psychodynamic psychotherapy (LPP), short-term psychodynamic psychotherapy (SPP) or solution-focused therapy (SFT) and were followed for 10 years. The outcome measures were psychiatric symptoms, work ability, personality and social functioning, need for treatment, and remission.
At the end of the follow-up, altogether 74% of the patients were free from clinically elevated psychiatric symptoms. Compared with SPP, LPP showed greater reductions in symptoms, greater improvement in work ability and higher remission rates. A similar difference in symptoms and work ability was observed in comparison with SFT after adjustment for violations of treatment standards. No notable differences in effectiveness between SFT and SPP were observed. The prevalence of auxiliary treatment was relatively high, 47% in SFT, 58% in SPP and 33% in LPP, and, accordingly, the remission rates for general symptoms were 55, 45 and 62%, respectively.
After 10 years of follow-up, the benefits of LPP in comparison with the short-term therapies are rather small, though significant in symptoms and work ability, possibly due to more frequent use of auxiliary therapy in the short-term therapy groups. Further studies should focus on the choice of optimal length of therapy and the selection of factors predicting outcome of short- v. long-term therapy.
The present study examined consumer satisfaction with services provided in a Psychiatric Walk-In Clinic in order to determine not only general levels of satisfaction but also whether or not differences in satisfaction exist between different user groups. Although levels of reported satisfaction were generally high, group psychotherapy patients reported being significantly less satisfied than patients who had been assessed at the clinic or who were in individual psychotherapy. None of the demographic variables including previous psychiatric experience, diagnosis and patient visits were related to satisfaction. These data were discussed in terms of program development.
We used a randomized clinical trial to investigate the interaction of two patient personality characteristics (quality of object relations [QOR] and psychological mindedness [PM]) with two forms of time-limited, short-term group therapy (interpretive and supportive) for 139 psychiatric outpatients with complicated grief. Findings differed depending on the outcome variable (e.g., grief symptoms, general symptoms) and the statistical criterion (e.g., statistical significance, clinical significance, magnitude of effect). Patients in both therapies improved. For grief symptoms, a significant interaction effect was found for QOR. High-QOR patients improved more in interpretive therapy and low-QOR patients improved more in supportive therapy. A main effect was found for PM. High-PM patients improved more in both therapies. For general symptoms, clinical significance favored interpretive therapy over supportive therapy. Clinical implications concerning patient-treatment matching are discussed.
Little research has been done on therapeutic alliance in group psychotherapy, especially the impact of treatment duration and therapist professional characteristics.
Therapeutic alliance was rated by patients on the Working Alliance Inventory-Short Form at three time points (sessions 3, 10 and 17) in a randomized controlled trial of short-term and long-term psychodynamic group psychotherapy. As predictors we selected therapist clinical experience and length of didactic training, which have demonstrated ambiguous results in previous research. Linear latent variable growth curve models (structural equation modeling) were developed for the three Working Alliance Inventory-Short Form subscales bond, task and goal.
We found a significant variance in individual growth curves (intercepts and slopes) but no differential development due to group length. Longer therapist formal training had a negative impact on early values of subscale task in both treatments. There was an interaction between length of the therapists' clinical experience and group length on early bond, task and goal: therapists with longer clinical experience were rated lower on initial bond in the long-term group but less so in the short-term group. Longer clinical experience influenced initial task and goal positively in the short-term group but was unimportant for task or significantly negative for goal in the long-term group.
There was no mean development of alliance, and group length did not differentially impact the alliance during 6 months. Early ratings of the three Working Alliance Inventory-Short Form subscales partly reflected different preparations of patients in the two group formats, partly therapist characteristics, but more research is needed to see how these aspects impact alliance development and outcome. Therapists should pay attention to all three aspects of the alliance, when they prepare patients for group therapy.
In psychodynamic groups, length of therapy does not differentiate the overall level or the development of member-leader alliance. Within psychodynamic groups, each individual appear to have their unique perception of the member-leader alliance. Therapists with longer formal psychotherapy training may be less successful in establishing early agreement with patients on the tasks of psychodynamic group psychotherapy. Patients perceive a somewhat lower degree of early emotional bonding with the more clinically experienced therapists in long-term psychodynamics groups. Therapists with more clinical experience may contribute to a stronger degree of initial agreement with patients on the tasks and goals of short-term group psychotherapy.