Variations in the development of psychological therapy in three European Union countries
until further notice
SourceInternational Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, 32, 1-2, (2012), pp. 70-81
Article / Letter to editor
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SW OZ BSI KLP
SW OW RCSW [owi]
International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy
SubjectExperimental Psychopathology and Treatment
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine the similarities and differences in the development of psychological therapies in three European Union countries (the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and France) in the context of national policies about health services and public mental health. Design/methodology/approach – Three case studies are utilised for this purpose as historical descriptions. The latter are then discussed in the light of traditional approaches to the sociology of the professions. Findings – Whilst some similarities are identified across the three countries (for example the recent convergence of policy interest in “evidence-based practice”) it is also clear that the particular national cultures have shaped developments and their different forms of healthcare organisation have been reflected in national legislative and regulatory arrangements. Research limitations/implications – These case studies draw attention to the need to explore national variations in policy formation about the same matter (in this case the professionalization of psychological therapies) and to extend discussions within the sociology of the professions to ones of healthcare organizational contexts. In addition, the contested nature of applied psychology may require special attention relative to other forms of health work practice. Originality/value – This paper provides a particular form of understanding about psychological practices within modern healthcare and public health policies, in the light of the peculiar and contextualised aspects of the case studies provided.
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