Expatica news

Bid to crack down on ‘charlatan’ psychotherapists

15 September 2005

BRUSSELS – Health minister Rudy Demotte has unveiled a plan to rid Belgium of ‘charlatan’ psychotherapists.

On Thursday, La Libre Belgique reported that the minister thinks it is time to recognise the importance of mental health and regulate it properly.

“We must separate the good grain from the chaff by weeding out charlatans in order to assure citizens a quality of care that can’t be guaranteed today,” said Demotte.

The minister has drawn up a legal proposal with the assistance of fellow socialist MP Yvan Mayeur and Liberal VLD senator Annemie Van de Casteele. The plan will be put before the rest of the government next month.

The trio want to see psychotherapists, who aren’t currently regulated, obliged to have a university diploma and to undergo training with a recognised professional body.

In the future, anyone who does not meet those criteria will not legally be allowed to work or advertise themselves to treat mental health patients.

A special body to advise on mental health treatment would also be set up under the proposals.

Demotte’s idea is to tackle the regulatory gap which currently exists in the area of psychotherapists who don’t always, like psychiatrists or psychologists, have a medical qualification.

[Copyright Expatica News 2005]

Subject: Belgian news