Publications by authors named "Rose Mortimer"

6 Publications

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The Evidence-Base for Psychodynamic Psychotherapy With Children and Adolescents: A Narrative Synthesis.

Front Psychol 2021 27;12:662671. Epub 2021 Apr 27.

Research and Development Unit, Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust, London, United Kingdom.

Despite a rich theoretical and clinical history, psychodynamic child and adolescent psychotherapy has been slow to engage in the empirical assessment of its effectiveness. This systematic review aims to provide a narrative synthesis of the evidence base for psychodynamic therapy with children and adolescents. Building on two earlier systematic reviews, which covered the period up to 2017, the current study involved two stages: an updated literature search, covering the period between January 2017 and May 2020, and a narrative synthesis of these new studies with those identified in the earlier reviews. The updated search identified 37 papers (28 distinct studies). When combined with papers identified in the earlier systematic reviews, this resulted in a combined total of 123 papers (82 distinct studies). The narrative synthesis of findings indicates that there is evidence of effectiveness for psychodynamic therapy in treating a wide range of mental health difficulties in children and adolescents. The evidence suggests this approach may be especially effective for internalizing disorders such as depression and anxiety, as well as in the treatment of emerging personality disorders and in the treatment of children who have experience of adversity. Both the quality and quantity of empirical papers in this field has increased over time. However, much of the research demonstrates a range of methodological limitations (small sample sizes, lack of control groups etc.), and only 22 studies were Randomized Controlled Trials. Further high-quality research is needed in order to better understand the effectiveness of psychodynamic psychotherapy for children and young people.
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April 2021

The therapeutic relationship in child psychotherapy: integrating the perspectives of children, parents and therapists.

Psychother Res 2021 Jan 28:1-13. Epub 2021 Jan 28.

Psychology Department, Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, Santiago, Chile.

Objectives: To describe and analyse the therapeutic relationship integrating the views of children, parents and therapists.

Methods: This study employs a qualitative methodology, assuming a discovery-oriented approach which draws from grounded theory. Twelve psychotherapy triads participated, composed of children aged 6-10, their parents and psychotherapists. Semi-structured follow-up interviews were conducted (N=36), including a drawing in the case of the children.

Results: A positive therapeutic relationship with children and parents was viewed as a gradually constructed process, based on a positive emotional encounter between participants. It was facilitated primarily by the therapist's commitment and playful stance, the child and therapist mutual involvement, and the parent's collaboration. These aspects entailed a trustful, validating and caring relationship, that shaped children and parents' motivations towards therapy and facilitated change.

Conclusions: From a multiple-perspective approach, therapy was conceived as a relational experience. The development of positive relationships required different and evolving dispositions from therapy main actors. Therapists' genuine feelings and engagement in therapeutic activity seem central, underlining the importance of addressing relational aspects in child therapy research and training.
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January 2021

Pride Before a Fall: Shame, Diagnostic Crossover, and Eating Disorders.

Rose Mortimer

J Bioeth Inq 2019 Sep 1;16(3):365-374. Epub 2019 Jul 1.

Department of Psychiatry, Warneford Hospital, University of Oxford, Warneford Lane, Oxford, OX3 7JX, England.

This paper discusses the findings of qualitative research that examined the accounts of five "mostly recovered" ex-patients who had experienced transition between two or more eating disorder diagnoses. This study found that, in the minds of participants, the different diagnostic labels were associated with various good or bad character traits. This contributed to the belief in a diagnostic hierarchy, whereby individuals diagnosed with anorexia nervosa were viewed as morally better than those diagnosed with bulimia nervosa or binge eating disorder. Consequently, diagnostic crossover from a "better" to a "worse" eating disorder was often experienced as shameful moral failing, and a new diagnosis impacted the individual's sense of self-identity. These findings are of significance for both ethicists and clinicians; the paper concludes by outlining the relevance and possible clinical implications of shame in diagnostic crossover and suggesting avenues for future research.
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September 2019

Just Policy? An Ethical Analysis of Early Intervention Policy Guidance.

Am J Bioeth 2018 Nov;18(11):43-53

a University of Oxford.

Early intervention (EI) aims to identify children or families at risk of poor health, and take preventative measures at an early stage, when intervention is more likely to succeed. EI is concerned with the just distribution of "life chances," so that all children are given fair opportunity to realize their potential and lead a good life; EI policy design, therefore, invokes ethical questions about the balance of responsibilities between the state, society, and individuals in addressing inequalities. We analyze a corpus of EI policy guidance to investigate explicit and implicit ethical arguments about who should be held morally responsible for safeguarding child health and well-being. We examine the implications of these claims and explore what it would mean to put the proposed policies into practice. We conclude with some remarks about the useful role that philosophical analysis can play in EI policy development.
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November 2018