Delivering Psychological Treatment To Children Via Phone: A Set Of Guiding Principles Based On Recent Research With Syrian Refugee Children

McEwen, F. S., Bosqui, T., Chehade, N., Saad, S., Rahman, D. A., Skavenski, S., Murray, L., Pluess, M. & the t-CETA study team
Date published
08 Apr 2020
Tools, guidelines and methodologies
Children & youth, COVID-19, Epidemics & pandemics, Health, Psychosocial support
Médecins du Monde, American University of Beirut, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Queen Mary University of London, Queen Mary University of London

This guidance document sets out basic principles for the delivery of psychological therapy to children via telephone, drawing on recent experience of adapting an existing treatment programme to phone-delivery among Syrian refugee children in Lebanon.

It is aimed at mental health services that are adapting therapies to phone-delivery, and is especially relevant for those working in refugee or other low resource settings. Although we propose a number of specific solutions, it is important that each service adapts these further in order to create protocols that are appropriate to their specific setting, population, and type of therapy.

Key points covered include:
 Developing safety protocols for managing risk over the phone
 Adapting therapy to maintain child engagement and using alternatives to workbooks or written materials
 Tips to manage specific practical and treatment-related challenges that can arise during therapy

This guidance document was developed by Prof Michael Pluess and Dr Fiona McEwen (Queen Mary University of London), Dr Tania Bosqui (American University of Beirut), Nicolas Chehade (Médecins du Monde), and Dr Laura Murray and Stephanie Skavenski (Johns Hopkins University).