A very short introduction to Balint groups « The Balint Society

[I’m never sure where a legitimate connection to systems|complexity|cybernetics ends with OD and group dynamics stuff – I think I’m about to become more open to including this sort of concept. Not least because some of the responses to my LinkedIn post today https://www.linkedin.com/posts/antlerboy_time-out-of-time-toot-activity-7046729884106133505-8POM/ emphasised the connections]

John Salinsky, June 2009

Balint beginsBalint groups are named after the psychoanalyst Michael Balint (1896-1970). In the late 1950s, Michael and his wife Enid began holding psychological training seminars for GPs in London. This work was first described in the book The Doctor, his Patient and the Illness (1957). There were no lectures and the doctors’ education was based on case presentation and discussion in a small group of nine or ten with a psychoanalyst leader. To begin with, Balint encouraged the group members to hold ‘long interviews’ with their problem patients. This helped the doctors to concentrate on becoming good listeners. Subsequently the focus changed to studying the relationship between doctor and patient in the context of every day ordinary-length consultations.  The groups met once a week for a number of years so that patients and their progress could be followed up. The continuity also enabled group members to feel at ease with each other. Since those early days, Balint groups have spread across the world and in 22 countries there are national Balint Societies whose aim is to foster and develop the Balint approach.

Continues in source: A very short introduction to Balint groups « The Balint Society