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Last updated: 23.05.12

E-learning course 'should help clinicians treat anxiety'

A new online training course from Behavioural Tech should provide clinicians with experience in the handling of anxiety problems or other ailments that require treatments with a component of exposure. Only 28 per cent of therapists in the mental health profession have been trained in utilising exposure to assist people with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), with this falling to 12 per cent among other anxiety-related problems. However, research has indicated around 75 per cent of people treated with this method experience a significant improvement in their levels of anxiousness, making this the most effective treatment model for this kind of condition, Behavioural Tech claimed. Therefore, the new e-learning course from the organisation should enable healthcare practitioners to utilise exposure by teaching them about how to do so in an interactive, step-by-step fashion, giving students feedback throughout the programme. Users of the online training course will enter a virtual learning environment featuring six simulated clients, who will be facing exposure in settings such as at home, in a shopping centre, at the restaurant, in the airport or at a motorbike store. Clinicians will be able to increase the number of services they provide by developing the skills needed to have a foundation in the treatment of a range of conditions. These include agoraphobia, specific phobias, generalised anxiety disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder, PTSD, panic disorders and social anxiety. Contained within the e-learning course are 49 videos, four interactive eBooks and dozens of supplemental tools. "Just like exposure therapy works for clients, exposure therapy works for therapists, so the more you do it, the easier it gets," director of the Anxiety Disorders Research Center at the University of California Los Angeles Michele Craske declared. According to the UK's National Health Service, other frequent treatments for anxiety include cognitive behavioural therapy and applied relaxation, as well as a series of short-term and long-term medications.

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