Presenter- Dr Lars Masden
I'm a clinical and forensic psychologist and Accredited Schema Therapist and Supervisor with experience working in the private and public sectors in both Australia and England.
My schema journey started when I commenced work within a newly established specialist unit for ‘severe and dangerous’ personality disorders in the National Health Service (NHS) in the north of England about 20 years ago. It was a visionary initiative with the best of intentions however from its inception the project was fraught with an unwieldy complexity and challenges that ultimately proved insurmountable. My role, at this time, as a clinical psychologist was to provide treatment to patients diagnosed with personality disorders who had histories of violence and sexual offending. In this context I found that of the various treatment modalities attempted - schema therapy was the most accessible to the patients’ and at the same time the most instructive to the staff group about the patient’s unique vulnerabilities, triggers and emotional needs. Upon my eventual return to Australia in the late 2000’s I started working in private practice where my experiences in England provided me with the opportunity to again work with similar issues and problems here.
At this time I also commenced my accreditation in Schema Therapy and continued to work within community, hospital and institutional contexts applying schema therapy to complex adult difficulties both with clinical and forensic clients. In the course of my work as an advanced accredited schema therapist I have been called as an expert witness to the Supreme Court on the application of the schema therapy to high risk offenders. In recent years I have also provided supervision for accreditation and delivered schema training to staff within prisons and the parole and probation services as well as mainstream settings.