A regional training programme to develop integrated, collaborative, resource-oriented Family Intervention skills.

Frank R. Burbach1; 1University of Exeter & Somerset Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, UK

With funding from NHS England/ Health Education England the University of Exeter is providing a unique Family Interventions (FI) training programme for the South West region. Four training courses (10 taught days and 6-months of supervised practice) are being provided to 12 teams. The course introduces students to a flexible, widely applicable FI approach, which integrates CBT/ psychoeducational and systemic approaches. This collaborative, resource-oriented, brief family/network therapy is presented in a framework of overlapping phases: the provision of information and emotional and practical support; identification of patient, family and wider network resources; encouraging dialogue and mutual understanding; identification and alteration of unhelpful patterns of interaction; improving stress management, communication and problem solving; relapse prevention planning; and ending. The ending phase not only pertains to the last sessions but also to the ending of each family meeting so that every session is a ‘mini intervention’. With some families a short FI of only 2 or 3 meetings can touch on all 6 phases. However, in most cases around 10 sessions would need to be agreed to be able to include the development of specific skills. If a typical brief FI of 3-5 sessions is undertaken this often proves sufficient to improve the emotional climate, help the family to (at least begin to) change some unhelpful patterns, solve some immediate problems, and feel prepared and supported should they need to access services again. The poster describes the regional training approach, the FI model and its evidence base.

Topic Area: Psychosocial Interventions

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