Group Debriefing for People with Chronic Diseases During the SARS Pandemic: Strength-Focused and Meaning-Oriented Approach for Resilience and Transformation (SMART)

Ng, S. M.; Chan, Timothy H. Y; Chan, Cecilia L. W.; Lee, Antoinette M.; Yau, Josephine K. Y.; Chan, Celia H. Y.; Lau, Jenny
February 2006
Community Mental Health Journal;Feb2006, Vol. 42 Issue 1, p53
Academic Journal
This study presented preliminary results on the efficacy of a novel group debriefing model called Strength-Focused and Meaning-Oriented Approach for Resilience and Transformation (SMART). The SMART debriefing (1) aimed at boosting resilience and catalyzing transformation among persons undergoing stressful events, (2) adopted a growth-oriented and holistic approach of health promotion, and (3) employed methods drawn from various indigenous sources (e.g. Asian philosophies and Traditional Chinese Medicine). Participants (N=51) were people with chronic diseases recruited about 1 month (August 2003) after the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) outbreak was eventually under control, after causing widespread panic in Hong Kong. After the one-day group debriefing, participants showed significant decrease in depression level, as measured by Brief Symptom Inventory (Derogatis & Melisaratos, 1983, Psychological Medicine, 13(3), 595–605) and changes in cognitive appraisal towards SARS. Such changes were sustained in a 1-month follow-up. Clinical implications and directions for further study were discussed.


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