We surveyed all our senior house officers (SHOs) in 1998 to ascertain the nature and quality of their psychotherapy training. Following the introduction of a structured psychotherapy training programme, we wished to see what difference this had made to their training experience. The same questionnaire was used to survey all SHOs currently training in our trust, and compared their responses with those of the earlier cohort.
There was a statistically significant increase in the number of trainees seeing patients, in the number of psychotherapy patients being seen, and in the expectations of trainees of being able to fulfil College requirements.
Our results demonstrate the value of a formal psychotherapy training programme for the quality of psychotherapy training at SHO level. In particular, the introduction of protected time may have been crucial in allowing the SHOs to gain the necessary experience.
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