Centre for Emotions and Health at Medical School Dalhousie

The Center for Emotions and Health at Dalhousie Medical School was founded relatively recently at Halifax University. The Center for Psychotherapy treats patients with mental disorders due to interpersonal relationships or general health conditions. In addition, the staff conducts ongoing research on psychotherapy, introducing innovative techniques and methods to help patients.

Medical School Dalhousie History

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The Dalhousie School of Medicine is dedicated to teaching advanced science and humanity in medicine, developing innovative techniques and techniques in health care, influencing social and health policy, and positively impacting the regional economy.

An integral part of Seaside Canada since 1868, the success of Dalhousie Medical School has always been tied to an interest in the communities it serves. All well-trained, highly qualified graduates can provide care to people of all ages across Canada and worldwide.

Dalhousie School of Medicine is a leader in assessing the effectiveness of continuing professional development, applying its findings to programs here and across Canada. The unique undergraduate medical program has been designed for graduate physicians who adhere to the highest professional standards, are committed to continuous learning, work hard for their communities and demonstrate the highest quality skills that reflect the values and needs of Sea Canada residents.

Essential facts about the history of Dalhousie School of Medicine:

Dalhousie established one of the first medical programs in Canada in 1920

The Faculty of Health Professions was founded in 1961 in connection with the idea of an umbrella faculty for all paramedical groups put forward by the Medical Faculty Council in 1959.

The Naval College of Pharmacy was incorporated into Dalhousie as the College of Pharmacy in 1959.

Dalhousie’s nursing program joined the faculty in 1963 with 95 students.

On July 1, 2017, the faculty renamed the Department of Health to reflect its increased healthcare role.

Dalhousie has the highest accreditation rating in the last two Medical Education Liaison Committee surveys in 1995 and 2002. Dalhousie’s graduating class of 2009 was ranked first in a national competition organized by the Canadian Resident Matching Service. Dalhousie medical school graduates have also consistently placed first among Canadian medical students in national licensing examinations.

Training the next generation of physicians

The School of Medical Education (UGME) designs, develops and oversees Dalhousie’s accredited four-year MD program, Canada’s state-of-the-art MD training program.

A team of experts specializing in medical education, curriculum development, curriculum design, clinical care and medical information collaborated to develop a new four-year MD program. As a result, the curriculum is based on best practices in medical education and practice both nationally and internationally. In addition, student input continues to have an invaluable impact on the program.

The approach to teaching and learning is patient-centred and case-based, and students learn in small groups. Although the curriculum is focused on clinical practice, the program is designed to provide students with a solid foundation in the primary and medical sciences.

The guiding principles of curriculum are to graduate physicians who:

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Possess high professionalism, a commitment to excellence in patient care, high ethical standards, and responsibility to the community for their assigned duties.

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Contributing to the Community as community contributors, all graduates make meaningful contributions to the communities of practice and the healthcare institutions and systems they belong to.

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Lifelong learners. The graduates engage in self-assessment and reflective practice to integrate clinical experience and scientific evidence to improve patient care, safety and outcomes.

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Qualified clinicians applying scientific understanding, clinical skills, professional attitudes, and reflective practice to provide safe, patient-centered care.


Medicine and Health Fqaculties at School

Dalhousie School of Medicine offers the most dynamic, creative and advanced MD training program of any medical school in Canada. The school recently spent two years updating the undergraduate program to get the training they need and want to become highly skilled and competent physicians.

The school offers both a master’s degree in psychiatric research and a doctorate in psychiatric research, programs that give students the skills and knowledge they need to succeed as professionals in clinical and neurobiological research related to mental health and illness.

A holistic approach to learning

The undergraduate program integrates clinical skills, communication skills, medical humanities, basic sciences, ethics, health law, leadership, professionalism and technology to produce compassionate, highly skilled physicians leaders in their communities.

Early clinical experience

Dalhousie medical students follow a physician to one of the affiliated clinical hospitals or medical centers on their first day of medical school. A few weeks later, they begin their first clinical elective in an area of their choice anesthesia, cardiology, pediatric pain, diagnostic radiology, hematology, psychiatry, obstetrics.

Available Programs

Dalhousie University School of Medicine offers every student who wishes to pursue an advanced degree in medical research the opportunity to earn master’s and doctoral degrees. These include:

  • Biochemistry and molecular biology
  • Public health and epidemiology
  • Medical neuroscience
  • Microbiology and immunology
  • Pathology
  • Pharmacology
  • Physiology and biophysics

Dalhousie is known for its dynamic interdisciplinary research community. Every student has the opportunity to participate and conduct medical and biomedical research each year.

Academic Program

The Dalhousie MD program offers you clinical practice opportunities beginning the first week of medical school.


The first two years (preclinical practice):

Preclinical courses include the basics of human anatomy and systems as well as philosophical and ethical aspects of medicine. Structured lectures, lab work, tutorials, and time for the Research in Medicine program, electives, and independent research are provided.At the end of the first year, each student will spend a week working alongside physicians in seaside communities. During the summer months, everyone can apply for summer electives (local or international) and paid summer internships.


Years 3 and 4 (internship years):

Clerkships in the last two academic years provide you with more opportunities to apply what you’ve learned in a variety of clinical settings and medical specialties. Every student will meet with Dalhousie clinical faculty, receive mentors, and explore residency training programs. Clerkships take place at institutions around the world, with opportunities to travel across Canada and abroad.

Centre for Emotions and Health at Medical School

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Centre for Emotions and Health was established at the Medical School. Specialists with particular expertise and training in Intensive Short Term Dynamic Psychotherapy (ISTDP) work here, which is the fundamental creation of the center. Together, they form a multidisciplinary team that is ideal for teaching and treating those experiencing emotional blockages.

About Centre

Centre for Emotions and Health was founded in 2002. The school’s mission is to help solve all people’s emotional problems, whether they involve a relationship or negative consequences regarding physical health.

The Center for Emotions and Health addresses emotional problems by providing specialized psychotherapy research, education and clinical care to people with: medically unexplained symptoms anxiety depression; Various medical syndromes related to stress; Relationship problems that cannot be handled by traditional medications and psychotherapy.

The school’s program provides patients with services based on a short-term psychotherapy called Intensive Short Term Dynamic Psychotherapy (ISTDP). Specialists promote an understanding of the role of emotions and mental disorders in health and illness behaviors by:

  • Teaching professionals to diagnose and manage these problems through empirically validated brief therapies.
  • Observational treatment of a limited number of patients through videotaping.
  • Finding the most effective approaches to training and treatment.
  • Research and education related to the economic and social scope of problems, managing emotions.

Emotion Healing at the Centre

The Center for Emotions and Health explores the emotional consequences of traumatized or interrupted human attachments (long-term relationships, such as those between parent and child or between spouses) and finding new ways to treat the resulting symptoms effectively.

Intensive Short-term Dynamic Psychotherapy (ISTDP)

Intensive Short Term Dynamic Psychotherapy (ISTDP) is a form of short-term psychotherapy. Through the use of ISTDP, it is possible to view psychological disorders through the lens of attachment (various emotional effects, such as those based on long interpersonal relationships: between parents, children, spouses, colleagues, and so on), as well as the emotional consequences of broken attachments.

This is why such a center was created to free people from these kinds of attachments. All offerings, designed for healthcare professionals, include courses, workshops, and small group video consultations.

Emotion-Focused Consultation Service

Due to the fact that in the center has top-notch specialists who are engaged in the study and research of psycho-emotional addictions, all patients have a chance to get specialized help, which lasts for an accelerated program, and get rid of psychosomatic and emotional disorders, which directly negatively affect the overall physical condition of the person.

Seminars and Courses at the Centre for Emotions and Health

Medical school professors are known for leading research in various areas of health care. Students can learn from renowned researchers and conduct their research projects.

Students cen get both a master’s degree in psychiatric research and a doctorate in psychiatric research, programs that give students the skills and knowledge they need to succeed as professionals in clinical and neurobiological research related to mental health and illness.


If you’re a registered healthcare professional interested in learning more about ISTDP and the people who benefit from it, consider one of fall or winter semester courses.

Individual Seminars

School offers video-based seminars, workshops and supervisions designed to meet the training needs of healthcare professionals with different theoretical and professional backgrounds. There are also customized modules for each medical specialty.

Small-Group Video Support

Suppose you are a registered psychologist or psychotherapist who has attended at least one of the semester-long courses. In that case, you may be eligible for supervision designed to assist you in your independent study.

Research at Centre for Emotions and Health

Centre for Emotions and Health has an academic and research vision that focuses on supporting transformational health, focusing on the well-being of individuals, families, communities, and populations.

Emotional Impact on Patient Safety

There is a strong relationship between emotions, decision making, and health care provider behavior and the assessment of their potential impact on patient safety.

There is ample evidence that the emotional state of the patient can be influenced by the emotional state of the physician himself. A patient’s emotional state can change depending even on the environment of the facility, causing different kinds of psychological behavioral changes.

There are many ways in which a physician’s emotional state can affect patient care. To reduce dynamic errors, awareness of these factors should be increased.

Medically Unexplained Symptoms

There are several emotional processes in the occurrence, maintenance, and experience of medically unexplained symptoms (MUS) that can be addressed through a specific specialist approach. They are all based on psychosomatics, which directly affects patients’ physical condition.

Direct observation of the physical effects of emotional experience in MUS provides sensory evidence to enable patients to make mind-body connections.

Research findings provide new insights into barriers to engagement with potential solutions in addressing the psychological needs of clients with MUS.


The Centre for Emotions and Health researches areas including alcohol, tobacco, cannabis, brain imaging, human psychopharmacology, sexual addiction, gambling addiction, video game addiction and other addiction research topics.

Studies of specialists allow to find out how various pharmacological and non-pharmacological factors contribute to different addictive behaviours, caused by addictions, psychological factors and disorders, mood changes, and various disorders of physiological processes determined by psychosomatic reactions to this or that behaviour or action.

Specialists determine the degree of individual differences in these factors.

Thanks to using short-term ISTDP methodology in patients, the positive dynamics in treating an addiction are observed after just a few months.

Specialists carry out the treatment with appropriate training.


Alcohol Addiction

Alcohol addiction can also be treated at the Center of Health. Studies have also shown how addictions such as alcohol and smoking closely interact and whether they influence each other.

Thanks to the studies of specialists, it is possible to determine how different pharmacological and non-pharmacological factors contribute to the development of different types of addictive behaviour and determine the extent of individual differences in these factors. It is known that patients cannot give up alcohol addiction by themselves, so they need help.

Thanks to using short-term ISTDP methodology in patients, already in a few months, positive dynamics in the treatment of physiology and psychosomatics of patients are observed.

Short-term ISTDP method was used for treating patients with tobacco addiction already after several months; patients showed positive dynamics in treatment. Specialists provide treatment with appropriate training and support.

Tobacco Addiction

The center assists patients in the treatment of tobacco addiction. Such a widespread addiction as tobacco negatively affects human behaviour and psychosomatic, and the patient’s own refusal to smoke leads to all sorts of neuroses, nervous breakdowns, deterioration of physical and psychoemotional health. Thanks to the studies of specialists, it is possible to determine how different pharmacological and non-pharmacological factors contribute to the development of different types of addictive behaviour and determine the extent of individual differences in these factors.

The short-term ISTDP method was used to treat patients with tobacco addiction after several months, and patients showed positive dynamics in treatment. Specialists provide treatment with appropriate training and support.

Video Game Addiction

Video game addiction is now a genuine and clinically diagnosable disease… Moreover, it belongs to the international classification of diseases, which means that patients with video game addiction need help. At the center, this help is provided using intensive short-term dynamic psychotherapy, identifying different types of disorder, hidden behavioural factors, a variety of reactions, meta-psychologies and unconscious mechanisms that have managed to become entrenched in the person’s behaviour.

The ISTDP technique is applicable to patients with a severely fragile character structure/borderline organization. Applying the unique issues of treatment and the therapist when working with patients with behavioural disorders in a few months, patients show positive dynamics in therapy. Professionals provide treatment with appropriate training and support.

Gambling Addiction

Intensive Short Term Dynamic Psychotherapy (ISTDP) can be applied to people with a wide range of self-destructive behaviour problems, including gambling, which negatively affects the players’ psyche. Therefore, people with gambling addiction are carefully diagnosed, and short-term dynamic therapy is applied. According to the results, the variety of disorders are cured, behaviour according to metapsychology, also it is found out what unconscious mechanisms generate and perpetuate destructive behaviour.

ISTDP can effectively work with these patients when the behaviour is eliminated, and the psychopathological and psychopathological forces continue to operate. This technique applies to severely fragile character structure/borderline organization patients. Unique treatment and therapist issues apply here when working with patients with behavioral disorders.