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Implementing Dialectical Behaviour Therapy: organizational pre-treatment

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  28 September 2010

Michaela Anne Swales*
School of Psychology, Bangor University, Bangor, Wales, UK, and Betsi Cadwaladr Health Board
*Author for correspondence: Dr M. A. Swales, School of Psychology, University of Wales, Brigantia Building, Penrallt Road, Bangor, Wales LL57 2AS, UK. (email:


Implementing change in organizational systems is challenging, and implementing a new psychotherapeutic approach is no different. A literature exists on issues in implementation across a wide range of domains (technological, healthcare, justice). However, little of it is utilized in endeavours to implement innovations in psychological treatments. This paper draws on the implementation literature and on the experiences of the British Isles DBT Training Team (BIDBT) in implementing Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) in mental healthcare systems in the UK over the last 13 years. This paper describes principles and strategies of ‘organizational pre-treatment’ as a necessary prerequisite to implementation.

Service models and forms of delivery
Copyright © British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies 2010

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