Research Cum Training: Assumptions, Balint's Method, and Future Directions.
Michael Balint conducted several multi-year training programs for general practitioners designed to teach lessons from a psychoanalytic perspective on the relationships doctors have with their patients and contribute to their healing skills. This group process evolved, and it was described along with an elaboration of significant researched observations of interferences in those relationships. There were several other similar multi-year experiential group endeavors conducted and/or inspired by Michael and Enid Balint which were designed to further investigate the subtleties in relationships between doctors and patients. However, none have been done since the late 1990's. Instead, research about the impact of Balint group impact has been dominated by the evidence-based approach to all medical research, and it has been typified by variations on randomized controlled, double blind research methodologies. A recent literature review has highlighted the limited results of such studies along with questions about methodological approach. However, the authors continue to support the search for appropriate dependent variables to validate the value of Balint groups for physicians. This paper identifies and examines the implicit assumptions that underly current research efforts. In addition, there is an exploration of Michael Balint's approach to "research cum training" along with describing his assumptions and the results of his research approach. In addition, recommendations are made to extend the work of the work of uncovering healing dynamics in doctor patient relationships.
Published In/Presented At
Sternlieb JL. Research Cum Training: Assumptions, Balint's Method, and Future Directions. Int J Psychiatry Med. 2022 Aug 29:912174221123616. doi: 10.1177/00912174221123616. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 36039404.
Department of Psychiatry