Balint Groups Online for Medical Students
Opportunities for confidential discussion & reflection groups
The BSANZ is pleased to offer Balint group experience at no cost for medical students.
What can a Balint Group offer?
- Opportunities to share and reflect on experiences of clinical work and training
- In-depth discussion about clinical interactions between students, doctors, and patients
- Outlets for anxieties and frustrations from observing the reality of clinical practice
- Greater understanding and appreciation of the complexity of medical work
- Support through collegial sharing
- Protection from disillusionment and burn-out
- See https://balintanz.org for more information
What is a Balint Group?
Balint group work is a method of clinical reflection, originally supporting doctors in their work with patients and families experiencing complex situations. Balint groups now support a range of health and other professionals. An advantage of the online format is that students from different universities can meet to share their learning experiences.
What happens in a medical student Balint Group?
A clinical experience which has stayed in the student’s mind for some reason is presented informally – notes or preparation are certainly not expected or even encouraged. The group then responds and reflects on the experiences of the patient, the student and others involved, and on what was happening in these relationships. The focus is on the emotional experiences of those involved rather than on problem-solving, diagnosis or management. It is a rich experience for all involved. We will generally think about two ‘cases’ during each group meeting.
Where and when?
The groups will be held on Zoom. Each group will run for 90 minutes on a weekday evening over six consecutive weeks. Groups will have between seven and ten students, and the same students attend the six meetings. Participants are asked to commit to attending all six sessions of the series.
The group leaders maintain the structure of the group and help the group explore perspectives that might not have been heard. Each group will have two leaders, one a medical doctor, the other a psychotherapist. All are experienced leaders of Balint groups for doctors and other health professionals.
How do I join?
If you are interested in joining an online Balint group, please contact Meredith Waugh firstname.lastname@example.org who will welcome your enquiries and answer your questions.
If you would like to continue with Balint work after this experience, we will be happy to help you find an ongoing group.