Reliable change in outcomes from The BodyMind Approach™ with people who have medically unexplained symptoms/ somatic symptom disorder in primary healthcare
This chapter reports on outcomes of an initiative based on research undertaken by the author between 2004 and 2009, and further practice- based evidence, which supports people with medically unexplained symptoms (MUS) – or somatic symptom disorder (SSD), as the American Psychiatric Association update of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders ( DSM - 5) (American Psychiatric Association, 2013 ) terms it – in primary care in a large home county (region) in NHS England. Derived from dance movement psychotherapy (DMP) – specifically mindfulness as expressed in the model of authentic movement – a tailor- made service for this large population of patients in primary care has been designed that is first and foremost an embodied group intervention. It is unique in the UK, being transferred from a university setting to the health service. A university spin- out is the vehicle for the service delivery called Pathways2Wellbeing. The outcomes from the delivery of the service reported below are contextualised by reference to participants’ experiences of the service and facilitators’ reports of cases studies. Professor Helen Payne, PhD is a UKCP accredited psychotherapist; Fellow ADMPUK and Senior Registered dance movement psychotherapist who helped to pioneer DMP in the UK by leading the development of the professional association, post graduate accredited training, research and publications. She conducts research, supervises PhDs, presents, teaches and examines nationally and internationally. She is the Clinical Manager of The University of Hertfordshire spin-out Pathways2Wellbeing which trains facilitators and delivers services in the NHS employing The BodyMind Approach™ for patients with persistent, physical symptoms which have no medical explanation.