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Posted on Apr 4 2022 by Bobbie Kelly

St Andrew’s moral injury event branded ‘best conference of the year’

An online event that brought together world-leading experts in moral injury has been praised as being the “best conference of the year” by a speaker.

Hosted by the Centre for Developmental and Complex Trauma (CDCT), The Academic Centre, and the Crisis, Trauma and Disaster Section of the British Psychological Society (BPS), the conference attracted more than 100 delegates from 11 different countries around the world.

Explaining what moral injury is, Dr Deborah Morris, Director for the CDCT, said: “It occurs when a person’s deeply held values are violated, and is considered a form of psychological trauma. 

“Moral injuries can manifest as a consequence of something that person has done, or failed to do, or witnessed from the actions of another. It is often accompanied by a sense of betrayal, especially by those in positions of authority. 

“Moral injury is associated with significant negative psychological and physical health outcomes, including an increased risk of engaging in self-harm, substance misuse and suicide. Clinically, moral injury can be very difficult to treat.”

The event included 10 presentations about the subject, in particular the systemic context of moral injury and its conceptualisation. The topic was hotly debated among attendees with several online polls carried out over the course of the day.

In the afternoon, speakers talked about various interventions, which would be suitable for organisations and individuals to carry out in a bid to reduce the risk of experiencing and treating moral injury in a range of different populations.

Dr W Dean, CEO of Moral Injury in Healthcare, said event was the “best conference of the year, two years running, because you orchestrate inspiring, provocative conversations”.

A speaker added: “I thought there was a real buzz which is quite something for an online conference. I felt so welcome and comfortable, so thank you for that.”

Social media posts on the day were hugely positive as was the post-conference feedback which stated that 100 per cent of delegates had learnt something new at the event.

In addition, 96 per cent of attendees said that they would change something about their clinical practice after attending the conference.

One American delegate confirmed it had been “worth getting up for at 2:30 AM to attend” and another said it had been a “fully packed informative day”.

A total of 98 per cent of those who went to the event have expressed interest in attending another St Andrew’s conference.

To keep up to date with St Andrew's events, including our Academic conferences, visit our Events page.