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When interviewing victims of torture, there are a number of important background issues, including the use of interpreters and awareness of gender concerns. A thorough description of many of them is in the Istanbul Protocol. The Istanbul Protocol also contains a useful discussion about the psychological consequences of torture. Those who have not been tortured may also have encountered traumatic situations, which could have led to post-traumatic stress disorder, major depression, and other mental health problems.

UN: Istanbul Protocol

This is published by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. The document can be found on the website on the link below.

Link [Last update: 2006-01-16; 13:14]

The Traumatic Stress Clinic (London): A national referral centre for adults, children & families within the NHS

The clinic provides help for adults, children and families who are experiencing stress reactions because of either being involved in or being witness to a major traumatic event. They offer a full multi-professional service including clinical psychologists, psychotherapists, psychiatrists and family therapists. Specialist services are provided for refugees/asylum seekers who have been tortured. Each year, approximately 300 new patients benefit from psychiatric and psychological treatment programmes (mainly with a cognitive behavioural approach).

Link [Last update: 2006-01-16; 13:15]

The Aberdeen Traumatic Stress Clinic/ The Centre for Trauma Research

Information about the Traumatic Stress Clinic established at the Royal Cornhill Hospital which provides specialist assessment and treatment for PTSD.

Link [Last update: 2006-01-16; 13:15]

The Centre for Traumatic Stress Research and Practice (Nottingham)

This centre provides specialist psychological assessment and treatment for selected individuals following exposure to traumatic events or suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). It also offers a focus for academic and clinical research in a variety of areas within the field of traumatic stress and traumatology. Plus it provides consultancy on traumatic stress in the workplace, in trauma related training, research and practice.

Link [Last update: 2006-01-16; 13:16]

The European Society for Traumatic Stress Studies

Established in 1993, the society is the European network for professionals in the field of psychotraumatology, it promotes networking between individuals and organisations within the field of psychotraumatology.

Link [Last update: 2006-01-16; 13:16]

Examining Asylum Seekers: A Physician's Guide to Medical and Psychological Evaluations of Torture

The manual includes an overview of political asylum law and procedure in the United States, explains the physician's role in verifying signs and symptoms consistent with torture, and reviews components of appropriate written and oral medical testimony. It also includes a number of sample medical and psychological affidavits from real asylum cases. The manual is designed to be a resource for newcomers to asylum evaluations as well as experienced evaluators with questions on specific issues. Many issues here are relevant in the UK.

Link [Last update: 2006-01-16; 13:35]

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