COUNSELLING SERVICE FOR THE PATIENTS’ FAMILIES 

Pl. Sikorskiego 2/8


 
 
 
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 The counselling service is provided in co-operation with
the Chair of Psychiatry and "MEDINORM" Psychiatric Counselling


The psychiatric counselling centre for the patients' families at plac Sikorskiego is headed by two psychologists: Maria Wojnar, MA and Józef Bogacz, MA, who are certified psychotherapists and supervisors authorised by the Psychotherapy Section of the Polish Psychiatric Association. Other colleagues, who make their first steps in psychotherapy and family therapy, co-operate with the counselling centre. The main task of the centre is to work with the families of those who undergo therapy because of psychosis, both as inpatients and outpatients. We also work with the families that report other problems, e.g. a serious somatic illness of one of the family members, a marriage crisis or breakdown, lack of parental competence, etc. The work is based on the systemic approach proposed by social constructionism.
Family meetings go parallel to the process of individual therapy and group therapy of the family member who displays symptoms. On the one hand, this allows to see the issues that are subject to therapy in the family context, in which the problems and symptoms appeared and continue to appear. On the other hand, the simultaneous work with the family and the individual allows the family system to assimilate the changes that arise in the course of the therapy of the individual; sometimes this work facilitates the changes and helps to implement them.
Some families are offered an opportunity to join a group of several other families, which is an alternative way of working with the families as compared with the meetings with one particular family.
The team of the counselling centre conducts training courses on related issues for social workers, general practitioners, workers of social welfare homes, community psychiatry teams, etc. For over ten years, the centre has held an annual seminar on reflexive/systemic family therapy led by Klaus Deissler, the excellent family therapist, founder and head of the Institute of Systemic Studies in Marburg. The seminar is attended by family therapists from various therapy centres in Poland. Since 1993, the counselling centre team has single-handedly conducted a three-year course in systemic family therapy, attended by social workers, psychologists, nurses, doctors and pedagogues.
The remarks on the specialist activities of the centre are presented in the form of papers or workshops during symposiums and conferences on psychotherapy, family therapy, family assistance and psychiatric rehabilitation.


The description of the model can be found in the following articles:

1. Bogacz J., Wojnar M.:"Terapia systemowa w grupie wielorodzinne" [Systemic therapy in a group of several families], Psychoterapia 1995, no 3.

2. Bogacz J., Wojnar M.: "Model pracy z rodzinami pacjentów dziennego oddziału psychiatrycznego" [Model of work with the families of mental outpatients], Psychoterapia 1999, no 2.

3. Bogacz J., Wojnar M.:"Praca z rodziną chorego na schizofrenię w opiece pozaszpitalnej" [Work with the family of a schizophrenic patient in non-hospital care] in Meder J., ed., Rehabilitacja przewlekle chorych psychicznie [Rehabilitation of chronic mental patients], Kraków 2000.

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