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Posted on Jan 25 2018 by

Mental health professionals discuss Complex Trauma

Mental health professionals came to St Andrew’s Healthcare this week for a conference focusing on the impact of Complex Trauma within a secure setting for both patients and staff.

Hosted jointly by St Andrew’s and the British Psychological Society (BPS); Crisis Disaster & Trauma section, the sold-out conference allowed delegates to discuss how best to support and manage people who have experienced Complex Trauma.

Complex PTSD Trauma is now going to be included in the latest ICD-11, a recently updated World Health Organisation diagnostic tool which describes multiple traumas such as physical or sexual abuse, or neglect. Over long periods of time these can lead to difficulties with sense of self, overwhelming feelings, relationship difficulties and challenging behaviour.

Some of St Andrew’s patients have experienced Complex Trauma during childhood. Additionally, a small number of St Andrew’s staff have been exposed to traumatic incidents and aggression while working with our more challenging patients.

Organiser of the conference Dr Annette Greenwood, Consultant Counselling Psychologist and St Andrew’s Trauma Service Lead, said the event had been a great success. She explained: “Delegates were impressed by the speakers, especially our Dr Deborah Morris who shared information about her work with Learning Disability patients who are experiencing development Complex Trauma.”

Dr Greenwood continued: “Following the event I have received a large number of requests regarding the staff support we offer and our Trauma Response service. I am proud that St Andrew’s is again at the forefront, working with issues of Complex Trauma that impacts both our patients and staff.

"We are passionate about integrating a more person-centred way of informing the patients’ journey and providing support for our staff. Supported staff help to keep teams consistent, which has a positive and direct impact on our patients’ recovery.”

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