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(1964). Ideal Training Programme for Psychotherapists. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 45:141-142.

(1964). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 45:141-142

Ideal Training Programme for Psychotherapists

A conference on an ideal training programme for psychotherapists was held under the auspices of New York University and with the support of the Aaron E. Norman Fund, at the Frank Jay Gould House, Ardsley-on-Hudson, N.Y., 21–24 March, 1963. Thirty-two representatives of the fields of clinical psychology, social work, psychiatry, and psycho-analysis discussed a set of fourteen working papers, and agreed on the following statements.

The conference unanimously recognized the tremendous and growing social need and demand for psychotherapeutic services, which far outstrip the combined capacity of the existing mental health professions to satisfy them, either at present or in the foreseeable future. In the judgement of the participants, this problem cannot be met only by means of attempts to increase the supply of psychotherapists; it was agreed that constructive social action to change the pathogenic aspects of society and other types of social-psychiatric public health measures were necessary, as well as further research into methods of prevention. Nevertheless, it is the duty of the professions concerned to do whatever is possible to alleviate human suffering and facilitate the most creative functioning of the greatest number of persons. It was agreed that current methods of training psychotherapists are unsatisfactory both quantitatively and qualitatively: current types of professional preparation for the psychotherapeutic role are not only incomplete but contain elements that are at best redundant, at worst wasteful and interfering, besides providing an inadequate supply of competent therapists.

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