Allan Abbass

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Dr. Allan Abbass (born February 22, 1962) is professor, psychiatrist, and founding Director of the Centre for Emotions and Health[1] at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.

Dr. Abbass's clinical specialty and research focus is the use of Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy (ISTDP).[2][3] Dr. Abbass's work has focused on the use of intensive short-term dynamic psychotherapy to diagnose and treat medically unexplained physical symptoms.[4][5] Dr. Abbass has developed psychotherapy training programs in ISTDP.[1] Dr. Abbass has published clinical trials on the effectiveness of ISTDP[6] and meta-analyses on the effectiveness of ISTDP.[7]

Dr. Abbass is an Elected Member of the Royal Society of Medicine.[8] In 2001, Dr. Abbass was awarded The Association of Chairs of Psychiatry of Canada Education Award for Excellence in Education.[9] In 2013, Dr. Abbass was Awarded the Douglas Utting Award[10] in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, in the "Canadian Providing Outstanding Contributions" category, for the recognition and treatment of depression. He was awarded the designation "Distinguished Professor of 2016" by the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) Department of Psychiatry. In 2018 he was named The David Malan Visiting Professor of Psychotherapy at the Tavistock in London, UK and is also Visiting Professor of Psychotherapy at University of Derby, UK. He is currently the President of the International Experiential Dynamic Therapy Association

Dr. Abbass has also published on the use of videotape and videoconference for training in short term psychotherapy.[11]

Dr. Abbass has facilitated the development of ISTDP training programs in Australia [dead link],[12] Italy,[13][14] Norway,[15] Sweden,[16] Denmark,[17] Poland,[18] and the UK.[is this newspaper article a reference?] [19]

He is an advisory board member on the American Psychological Association's Unified Psychotherapy project,[20] and is on the scientific committee of the American Psychoanalytic Association.[21] He is faculty of the Norwegian Institute for ISTDP [22]

He published his first book, Reaching through Resistance: Advanced Psychotherapy Techniques, in 2015. His second book Hidden from View: Clinician's Guide to Psychophysiologic Disorders was published in 2018 with Dr Howard Schubiner

An avid basketball fan and player, Allan was named one of Canada's top 25 under 19 year old players while in High School. He was named to the Harrison Trimble High School Sports Hall of Fame in 2007.[23] He played university basketball at Ottawa University [24] and Dalhousie University. He is an investor and board member of the Halifax Hurricanes, the 2016 Champions of the National Basketball League of Canada.[25]


  1. ^ a b Matthews, Jan (January 2004). "Healing Emotions Saves Health-care Dollars" (PDF). Dalhousie Psychiatry Monitor. Retrieved 13 November 2013.
  2. ^ Nadia, Bobak (Spring 2011). "Emotional Rescue" (PDF). Living Health in Atlantic Canada. Retrieved 13 November 2013.
  3. ^ Abbass, AA; Kisely, SR; Town, JM; Leichsenring, F; Driessen, E; De Maat, S; Gerber, A; Dekker, J; Rabung, S; Rusalovska, S; Crowe, E (1 July 2014). "Short-term psychodynamic psychotherapies for common mental disorders" (PDF). The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews (7): CD004687. doi:10.1002/14651858.CD004687.pub4. PMID 24984083.
  4. ^ Abbass, Allan. "Implementing an Emotion-Focused Consultation Service to Examine Medically Unexplained Symptoms in the Emergency Department" (PDF). Journal of the Academy of Medical Psychology: 44–51.
  5. ^ Abbass, Allan (2008). "Intensive short-term dynamic psychotherapy to reduce rates of emergency department return visits for patients with medically unexplained symptoms: preliminary evidence from a pre–post intervention study" (PDF). Canadian Journal of Emergency Medicine. Retrieved 13 November 2013.
  6. ^ Abbass, Allan; Sheldon, Albert; Gyra, John; Kalpin, Allen (2008). "Intensive Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy for DSM-IV Personality Disorders: A Randomized Control Trial" (PDF). The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease. 196 (3): 211–6. doi:10.1097/NMD.0b013e3181662ff0. PMID 18340256. Retrieved 13 November 2013.
  7. ^ Abbass, Allan; Town, Joel; Driessen, Ellen (2012). "Intensive Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of Outcome Research" (PDF). Harvard Review of Psychiatry. 20 (2): 97–108. CiteSeerX doi:10.3109/10673229.2012.677347. PMID 22512743. Retrieved 13 November 2013.
  8. ^ Royal Society of, Medicine. "Royal Society of Medicine". Royal Society of Medicine. Retrieved 30 November 2013.
  9. ^ Abbass, Allan. "ACPC Award for Excellence in Education". Archived from the original on 2013-11-30. Retrieved 30 November 2013.
  10. ^ Canadian Psychiatric Association. "Douglass Utting Award". Retrieved 30 November 2013.
  11. ^ Abbass, Allan; Arthey, Stephen; Elliott, Jason; Fedak, Tim; Nowoweiski, Dion; Markovski, Jasmina; Nowoweiski, Sarah (2011). "Web-Conference Supervision for Advanced Psychotherapy Training: A Practical Guide" (PDF). Psychotherapy. 48 (2): 109–118. CiteSeerX doi:10.1037/a0022427. PMID 21639654. Retrieved 13 November 2013.
  12. ^ Melbourne Centre for ISTDP. "Home Page". Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  13. ^ Italian Development Center Study. "ISTDP". Archived from the original on 4 December 2013. Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  14. ^ Neuroscience and Communication Group. "Workshop Announcement" (PDF). Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  15. ^ Nordic Institute for ISTDP. "Home Page". Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  16. ^ Swedish Association for ISTDP. "Home Page". Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  17. ^ Danish ISTDP. "Linkedin Page".
  18. ^ Carpenter, Joanna. "Psychotherapy for Pain". Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  19. ^ Redfern, Simon. "Derbyshire Could Champion New Therapy". University of Derby News. Archived from the original on 3 December 2013. Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  20. ^ Unified Psychotherapy Project. "Allan Abbass, Advisory Board". Unified Psychotherapy Project News. Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  21. ^ American Psychoanalytic Association. "Empirical Studies in Psychoanalysis". American Psychoanalytic Association. Archived from the original on 2013-12-01. Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  22. ^ Norwegian ISTDP Institute. "Faculty". Retrieved 11 February 2020.
  23. ^ "HTHS Senior Boys Basketball Program 2010-2011".
  24. ^ "All-time roster information for Ottawa".
  25. ^ "Investor Group". Archived from the original on 26 January 2017.