Understanding the emotional content of the therapeutic relationship

Welcome to the Hellenic Balint Groups’ website

Welcome to the official website of the Hellenic Balint Groups that were created in 2012 in order to promote the theory and practice of Balint groups in Greece under the auspices of the British Balint Society that has since been responsible for the training and accreditation of the first Balint group leaders, doctors and psychologists, in Greece.

The method of Balint groups took its name from the psychiatrist and psychoanalyst, Michael Balint, who with his wife Enid Balint, social worker and psychoanalyst, created in the 1950s, in Great Britain, the first groups of general practitioners that were based on the discussion of cases from the clinical practice of their participants. Their aim was the improvement of the therapeutic relationship through its better understanding by the doctor and the more complete provision of care through a patient-centered approach.

The audience to which the groups are addressed is mainly doctors (now of all specialties and not just general practitioners from whom the groups started) but also involve other professional categories such as psychologists, nurses, midwives and social workers and generally professions in context of which a care-providing relationship can develop.

If you are a health or social care professional and are interested in the psychological aspects of your work and the relationship with your patients, don’t hesitate to contact us at 210 8016400 (Responsible for training Mrs Lida Bitrou) or by email at info@balintgroupgreece.com in order to find out more about Balint groups.

First Scientific Conference of Psychologists at the University Psychiatric Hospital “Eginition”: Balint group for the medical and nursing staff (March 2019)

We have the pleasure of inviting you to the First Scientific Conference of Psychologists organized on 30 March 2019, by the psychological services staff of the First Psychiatric Clinic of the University of Athens- Eginition Hospital, in the context of which we will talk about Balint groups and conduct a group for the psychiatrists, psychologists and nurses of the university hospital that houses since its foundation (1904) the Chairs of Psychiatry and Neurology of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (NKUA).

You can read more about this group in our newsletter issue.

Balint group at Sismanogleio General Hospital of Attica for the Internal Medicine Nursing Specialty (September 2018)

After the invitation of the Social Services of the Sismanogleio General Hospital of Attica, we conducted, last September, a Balint group for the nurses who are training in the Internal Medicine Specialty programme. This very interesting group that was conducted under the co-leadership of Mrs Lida Bitrou, clinical psychologist and accredited group leader, and Mrs Alia Hotary, psychologist and group leader in training, pointed out the need to integrate a method of psychological approach to patients in the training and clinical practice of nurses. You can read more about this group in our newsletter issue.

The first Balint group with an accredited group leader in a Greek public hospital (25 April 2018)

On 25 April 2018, a Balint group with an accredited Balint group leader was conducted for the first time with great success in a Greek public hospital at the General Hospital “Elena Venizelou” in Athens. The clinical psychologist and group leader Mrs Lida Bitrou, after her theoretical talk on the announcement of bad news to patients, led a Balint group for the doctors, nurses and midwives of the Department of Prenatal Screening, Assisted Reproduction and Family Planning of the hospital. We hope that this group will mark the beginning of the implementation of Balint groups with accredited group leaders in the hospitals of our country that need a place in which the medical and nursing staff will have the opportunity to talk about their emotions and difficulties related to their valuable work.

Independent Balint group for the Child – 20/5/2018

We invite you to the “Independent Balint group for the Child” that will be held on Sunday 20 May 2018 at the Villa Drosini in Kifissia and is addressed to doctors and other health professionals who work with children (pediatricians, child psychiatrists, child psychologists etc) as well as teachers and educators.

The aim of this group is to provide a meeting place for the participants who work with children in the field of Medicine or Education where they will have the chance to reflect on and discuss the psychological aspects of their work with the children.

The participation in this workshop counts towards the completion of hours needed for the training in Balint groups.


10:15 Registrations
10:30 Introduction to the workshop
10:45-12:15 Balint group 1
12:15-12:30 Discussion
12:30-12:50 Coffee break
12:50-14:20 Balint group 2
14:20-14:40 Discussion-conclusions


Lida Bitrou, Clinical Psychologist, Psychoanalyst, Accredited Balint group leader
Ntina Bezioula, School Psychologist, Psychotherapist, Balint group leader in training

Doctors, Psychologists: 30 euros
Teachers, Educators: 20 euros

For more information and participation please contact us at info@balintgroupgreece.com or by phone at 210 8016431.

The basic two-year training in Balint groups

Balint groups constitute a method of training and research (“training-cum-research” groups) that provide to health/mental health professionals (doctors, psychologists, nurses, midwives, social workers etc) a space to narrate their experiences from their clinical practice within a group of peers with the aim of better comprehending the psychological aspects of their work and cultivate personal skills like understanding, empathy and active listening towards their patients.

The participants, based on a case from their clinical practice, have the opportunity inside the group and with the help of the group leader, to try to understand the difficult aspects of the therapeutic relationship with certain patients (communication problems, non-compliance to treatment, boundary crossings etc). Just like the clinician-patient relationship occupies a central position in healthcare provision, equally in the group this relationship is placed in the centre of interest of the members in order to become an object of elaboration for them.  In this elaboration, the complexity of the clinical relationship emerges (emotions, psychological defenses, limitations) as well as the role of illness (or the medical problem/symptom) and the environment (patient’s family, clinical setting etc) in the interaction of the doctor/clinician with his/her patient.

Through their work in the group, the participants cultivate their ability to listen to their patients in a more effective and meaningful way. This improves the communication that they maintain with them and at the same time it helps them in their clinical work and contributes to a better personal mental state in and out of work. Moreover, by observing him/herself in the group which gives a feedback through their statements and opinions on the case presented, the clinician (doctor or other health/mental health professional) can trace any possible “blind spots” s/he may have and may render his/her communication with certain patients difficult, thus cultivating his/her capability for self-observation and reflective practice.

*The Hellenic Balint Groups function under the auspices of the British Balint Society and the participation in them counts in the credits that are needed for the Balint group leader accreditation (see below). 

Our Newsletter

Contact Us

Greek Balint Group

Tel. +30-210 8016400
email: info@balintgroupgreece.com


Επισκεφτείτε την σελίδα μας στο Facebook