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April 1959

The Family in Psychotherapy.

AMA Arch NeurPsych. 1959;81(4):530-531. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1959.02340160128025

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Dr. Midelfort has presented an account of his experiences in treating patients and family groups in the Lutheran Hospital in La Crosse, Wis. Theoretical aspects of his approach are illustrated with case material, including excerpts of interviews and their interpretation. Getting the family involved in the therapeutic effort is frequently facilitated by the custom of having family members remain in the hospital as aides and companions to the patient. This interesting procedure is unique in American hospitals. Discussion could have profitably been devoted to the implications of the therapeutic milieu, but the author chose to focus only on therapist-family-patient interactions.

A basic premise of the work is that the family must be considered as the unit in which illness occurs and that only through melioration of the different psychopathologies in the family can mental health be achieved for any individual member. The author's attempt to offer a conceptual basis for