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Uniwersytet SWPS - Logo

Reaching out to refugees: Lessons for trauma treatment and psychotherapy delivery

October 19, 2023
18:00–19:00 CEST (UTC+2)
online

Many refugees fleeing war suffer from posttraumatic stress disorder. During our 6th lecture in the EACLIPT webinar series, Prof. Dr. Frank Neuner, Head of Clinical Psychology at Bielefeld University including the University outpatient clinic, will talk about challenges that therapists face while treating persons who have experienced war and exile. The lecture will by followed by a discussion.

Responding to therapeutic needs of refugees

Many refugees from war areas flee to Europe. Due to traumatic events they experience in their home countries and on perilous journeys, and finally due to adverse conditions in exile, a large proportion of refugees present with posttraumatic stress disorder and depression. However, the current theories and treatments of trauma-related disorders are not designed to respond to refugees’ presentations. Moreover, the current way the treatment is provided is not well suited to meet the needs of refugees. Experiences of refugees from war-torn countries help to challenge some core assumptions and prompt us to adapt the current thinking about psychopathology, therapy, and treatment delivery.

Discussion

The lecture will be followed by a discussion hosted by Agnieszka Popiel, Ph.D. / Associate Professor, co-founder and co-head of SWPS University’s Clinic of Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy. We will focus on the following issue:

If evidence-based practice (EBP) is defined as the integration of the best available research with clinical expertise in the context of patient characteristics, culture, and preferences (according to the American Psychological Association) - delivering treatment to refugees presents a challenge for a (quite idealistic) equilibrium of EBP. People who have suffered so much deserve the best available treatment. Our discussion will focus on questions that are emerging when clinicians equipped with evidence-based treatments face people fleeing wars.

Keynote Speaker

Frank Neuner
Frank Neuner
Prof. Dr.
is the Head of Clinical Psychology at Bielefeld University including the University outpatient clinic. He has gained international reputation for the co-development of Narrative Exposure Therapy, a short-term mental health intervention for traumatic stress. He has published the first randomized treatment trial for posttraumatic stress disorder with refugees living in a war region that has been followed by several trials of his working group. His expertise includes epidemiology, etiology and treatment of severe trauma-associated psychological disorders following repeated intense adversities like war and child maltreatment.

Panelist

Agnieszka Popiel
Agnieszka Popiel
Ph.D. / Associate Professor

specializes in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and conducts randomized controlled trials (RCTs) on the efficacy, effectiveness and predictors of outcome focusing on the role of temperament in PTSD development, and as a predictor of treatment outcome. She co-authored the “Effective performance under stress”- a PTSD prevention protocol that has been tested in firefighters. She is a member of the Working Group for Humanitarian Crisis of the European Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Therapies (EABCT). Since 2007, she has been co-chairing a 4-year postgraduate program in cognitive-behavioural psychotherapy at SWPS University. She is also a cofounder and Co-Head of SWPS University’s Clinic of Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy. Full bio

Host

Marta Jackowska
Marta Jackowska
Ph.D. / Assistant Professor

is a health psychologist. She has been coordinating and hosting the EACLIPT webinar series since 2021. Full bio

Organizers

  • EACLIPT logo
  • SWPS University logo

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