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Centre for Crisis Psychology
Research

Future and current projects

Close-to-practice, innovative, and socially relevant research

Our goal is to provide close to clinic, research-based knowledge about traumatic stress, grief and coping with serious somatic illness.

DESK STUDY/RESEARCH ON CHILD DEVELOPMENT IN FAMILIES IN CRISIS

Families experiencing crises or extreme hard­ship face difficulties caring for their children. Children who have been exposed to neglect or abuse, and orphaned children, may have dif­ficulties learning, often perform less well than other children in school, and are at risk of negative long-term consequences, such as physical and mental health problems, premature death, less participation in the labour marked and wage earning. In addition, the current Covid-19 pandemic may put further strain on the wellbeing of children, with one example being the reported surge in gender-based violence affecting especially women and girls.

The University of Bergen will carry out an independent desk study of existing mental health interventions aiming to lift children and their families out of a crisis situation. This study is a review that will identify existing relevant knowledge on family strengthening interventions in general, and in Malawi, Zambia and Eswatini in particular. Moreover, the study will explore what relevant partners, needs and resources exist in these contexts, with a view to feasibility of an intervention study in one or more of these countries, also keeping the pandemic situation in mind. 

Project manager: Jarle Eid

SOS Children's Villages

INTERNATIONAL SEMESTER AND INTERNSHIP IN GLOBAL MENTAL HEALTH

Project goal
The project is a collaboration between Center for Crisis Psychology at UiB and Field Band Foundation inSouth Africa.The goal of the project is to create an engaging and extraordinary international semester for students at The University of Bergen with internships to the non-profit company Field Band Foundation(FBF) of South Africa. The project will support FBF in developing their internal institutional structures and staff support, as well as give our students the opportunity to experience their education in a more holistic approach with focus on mental health in a completely different cultural diverse and economic setting.

Center for Crisis Psychology (CCP) is a national center for research, education, innovation and dissemination within emergency preparedness, bereavement, trauma and crisis management. We have created an innovative and flexible international semester which give the students at The Faculty of Psychology structures and models to go abroad for credit-yielding internships, inspired by UN sustainable development goals. The main activity in the project is to test out a model created and further investigate if this model can be applied in other study programs as well as Music Therapy and medicine.

Goals and expected results
The aim is to create structures for an international semester of coursework and internship within crisis psychology and mental health, that will benefit the students, our partner i South Africa and UiB at an institutional level. The outlined structures of this semester provides a flexible, yet feasible model for internships and student mobility.

Challenge the students to develop understanding of, and reflect critically on professional/academic practice, through observation of the daily operationsand interaction with health care providers and NGO’s in an international setting.
A practicum periodof 8 weeks is a hands-on experience working in a professional setting.
Prepare their field report and oral presentation when returning to UiB.

We will create a credit-yielding internship within a subject area without boundaries.The project will develop the students perception on how we think about ourselves and the social world. Attitudes, social influences, prejudice, discrimination and conflicts, as well as  understanding of how to observe people in social situations and how different social factors influence people's cognition, emotions and behavior. These are important skills in social psychology when working as a clinical psychologist in the future.The internship will enhance employability and the students' psychosocial competences in an international setting. Professionals with competences and experiences within crisis psychology and mental health are sought after and provide knowledge applicable in a global setting. It is an international area with ever an expanding need to more professionals, world wide.

the project is delayed due to Corona restrictions

Prosject manager: Jarle Eid

The project is financed by DIKU

MUNICIPAL CANCER REHABILITATION 

Background
More than 70% of Norwegian cancer patients live 5 years after diagnosis. Many cancer survivors are struggling with serious physical, mental and socio-economic late effects, but research-based municipal cancer rehabilitation services are lacking and in demand. The goal is to lay the foundation for a municipal cancer rehabilitation program that can contribute to increased health-related quality of life and social participation. A postdoc will evaluate the feasibility of the program, and study changes such as physical function, fatigue, health-related quality of life, social participation as well as the participants' own experiences. The project will provide new and important knowledge about municipal cancer rehabilitation as well as valuable data for planning a larger randomized effect study.

The main goal:

  • Feasibility and compliance of the program
  • Participants' goal achievement and social participation
  • To measure development in participants' fatigue, physical function, health-related quality of life in the short (after 12 weeks) and long-term (after 6 and 12 months)
  • The participants' own experiences from the program and further recommendations for municipal cancer rehabilitation

Commencement date: January 01. 2021 until December 31. 2023

Project manager: Professor May Aasebø Hauken

Financed by Stiftelsen DAM

PSYCHOSOSIAL RESPONSES TO PANDEMIC/NATURAL DISASTER/CLIMATE CHANGE

The number of people affected by natural disasters each year are alarmingly high and can be expected to rise. The COVID-19 pandemic threatens the whole world. The mental health consequences have been documented not only in rates of posttraumatic stress symptoms (PTSS) and PTSD, but also for depression and other mental health problems.

In Nordic countries where we live in modern welfare states, inhabitants have high expectations of being cared for, both in terms of medical and psychosocial assistance in times of crisis. Systems must be in place to provide help for affected groups to prevent them from undue suffering. This conference will discuss the challenges involved and outline how communities and states can respond and provide appropriate psychosocial help to its citizens.

The presenters at the conference have been involved in research and clinical work following various disasters in their respective countries and internationally. This conference is open to everyone who takes an interest in how we respond to the public’s psychosocial needs following disasters and climate change.

Among presenters will be:

Professor Atle Dyregrov, Center for Crisis Psychology, University of Bergen
Professor Jarle Eid, Center for Crisis Psychology, University of Bergen
Professor Arna Hauksdottir, Reykjavik University
Professor Unnur Anna Valdimarsdóttir, Reykjavik University

The conference is a collaboration between Centre for Crisis Psychology, University of Bergen, Reykjavik University and (Nordic Centre of Excellence) NORDRESS

Commencement date: May 04. until May 06. 2021

Project manager: Atle Dyregrov

Financed by NORDRESS

RITUALS DURING THE CORONA EPIDEMIC

Background
The coronavirus has caused a decline in common social interactions. Ordinary funerals have not been possible, viewings has in many cases been prohibited and memorial services in the usual way have been impossible due to restrictions on group size. The funeral homes have tried to compensate in various ways through digital solutions, such as streaming funerals, but rituals allowing mourners to take leave of loved ones, have nevertheless been significantly limited. There are still restrictions on visits to hospital wards, on the number of participants in funerals, and during memorial services. It is important to establish more knowledge about the effect this has on the bereaved and those who work with the bereaved, so that the negative effects in current and future pandemics can be reduced.

The main goal:

  • Develop knowledge of the changes that the corona pandemic has brought about for ritual functions in connection with common and corona-related deaths
  • Provide knowledge about how this has affected personnel working in funeral homes
  • Examine how parents who have lost children during the corona pandemic have experienced how this has affected and hindered rituals
  • Provide advice on future pandemics

Project manager: Professor Atle Dyregrov

The project is financed by Landsforeningen uventet barnedød

PSYCHO PHARMACA AFTER STILLBIRTH

Background

Every year, about 200 parents experience the loss of a child in stillbirth. Previous research has shown that a stillbirth is a significant psychological strain and can be a traumatic experience for the parents. A number of negative consequences have been described for the parents, including a. an increased risk of mental illness.

However, there is little knowledge about the psychological strain parents experience in Norway. Prescribing medications used to treat mental illness and using health services in mental health care provides an indication of the extent to which parents experience mental health problems. Objective The overall goal of this study is to investigate the prescribing of psychotropic drugs and painkillers to parents after a stillbirth and the use of mental health services.

The study has the following sub-goals and research questions:

The main goal:

  • Which groups of psychotropic drugs are most often prescribed during the first 1-2 years after the birth of parents who have lost a child in stillbirth?
  • Can prescribing patterns be used to define groups that seem to need closer follow-up?
  • How often and for how long are psychotropic drugs prescribed to parents who have lost a child in stillbirth compared to parents who have had a live child?
  • Has there been a change in the prescribing rate of psychotropic drugs, including the type of psychotropic drugs, to parents who have lost a child in stillbirth over time from 2004 to 2019?
  • How often and for how long do parents who have experienced a stillbirth receive mental health care services in the specialist health service compared to parents who have had a live child?

Prosject manager: Associate professor Jens Thimm

The project is financed by Landsforeningen uventet barnedød

HEART DISEASE IN PATIENTS WITH MENTAL RETARDATION: RARE, FORGOTTEN OR OVERLOOKED?

The overall goal of this pilot project is to put heart health for people with developmental disabilities on the agenda by providing new knowledge about metabolic health and physical activity level, as well as gaining better insight into existing barriers to assess and treat the mentally handicapped. This project aims to put heart health for people with developmental disabilities on the agenda.

We will examine metabolic heart health and physical activity levels in a random sample of people with developmental disabilities and compare the results with the normal population, and conduct an interview study to gain insight into barriers existing for the prevention, investigation and treatment of cardiovascular diseases for this group. The National Association for Heart and Lung Disease (LHL) considers this project to be very important due to the vulnerability of the group of individuals with many risk factors for the development of heart disease, and on which there has previously been little research.

  • Examine metabolic heart health and physical activity level in a random sample of the mentally handicapped and compare the results with the normal population (Health survey in Nord-Trøndelag (HUNT4))
  • Conduct an interview study of GPs, managers and employees at the Department of Cardiology, the Obesity Clinic at St. Olavs Hospital, various rehabilitation institutions, employees in homes for the mentally handicapped and relatives of people with developmental disabilities to gain insight into barriers that exist for prevention, assessment and treatment of heart - / vascular disorders for this group.

Commencement date: Sept. 01. 2020 until August 30. 2022

Project manager: Associate professor Line Oldervoll

The project is financed by Stiftelsen DAM