University of South Florida

USF College of Nursing Partners with Scotland’s University of Stirling to Study Innovative PTSD Therapy for Veterans

USF Nursing extends Accelerated Resolution Therapy (ART) internationally after showing promising results in the United States

Tampa, FL (Sept. 12, 2013) – The University of South Florida College of Nursing is conducting the first Accelerated Resolution Therapy (ART ) study with British Armed Forces veterans suffering from symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

“Pilot Study of Delivery of Accelerated Resolution Therapy (ART) by Scottish Registered Nurses in Mental Health for Treatment of Military Psychological Trauma” is funded through a grant developed as a partnership between the USF College of Nursing and University of Stirling School of Nursing, Midwifery & Health (SNMH) in Scotland.

Since the therapy has shown success in the United States, the USF College of Nursing is working with University of Stirling SNMH to extend the study abroad. Kevin Kip, PhD, FAHAprofessor and executive director for the Research Center at the USF College of Nursing, and James Taylor, RNMH, MSc, teaching assistant at University of Stirling SNMH, are co-principal investigators.

“British soldiers have served in an extraordinary manner side-by-side with U.S. service members in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan,” Dr. Kip said. “We believe these soldiers, many suffering the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder, will benefit in a parallel manner to the excellent results we are observing in treating U.S. service members and veterans with ART.”

“Through POWER with Nursing, our Partnership Opportunities for Wellness, Education and Research initiative, we can really change what happens in healthcare around the world. Partnering with the University of Stirling for this ground-breaking research study, we are beginning a transformation in health care, a transformation of people’s lives,” said Dianne Morrison-Beedy, PhD, RN, WHNP-BC, FNAP, FAANP, FAAN, senior associate vice president of USF Health, and dean of the College of Nursing.


Kevin Kip, PhD, professor and executive director of the USF College of Nursing Research Center, is co-principal investigator of the collaborative study.

ART, a new and brief psychotherapy that treats psychological trauma and related symptoms such as depression, is studied by Dr. Kip as part of RESTORE LIVES at USF NURSING. In the psychotherapy session, the patient first re-imagines a prior traumatic experience, and then “replaces” distressing images and sensations with positive ones. This is accomplished through talk therapy with a clinician and performing sets of eye movements from left to right, a process that results in substantial symptom relief, according to findings of the first study of ART at the USF College of Nursing. The study results appeared in an on-line article published June 18, 2012 in the journal Behavioral Sciences.

“We believe that ART can be a viable and effective treatment for PTSD around the world,” Dr. Kip said. “This will be the first research study whereby the ART protocol will be delivered by nurse mental health professionals. It is our goal to train and conduct research with mental health professionals from a range of disciplines, and in diverse locations worldwide. Professional nurses with a strong mental health focus can be leaders in disseminating ART on an international basis.”

PTSD is a prevalent, disabling anxiety disorder that can emerge after experiencing life-threatening events such as military combat, natural disasters, terrorist incidents, serious accidents, and physical or sexual assaults at different life stages. According to the PTSD Foundation of America, one in three troops returning from combat is diagnosed with PTSD symptoms. Of those, less than 40 percent seek help. The organization also reports that at least five active duty military members attempt suicide every day.

PTSD symptoms have also been on the rise among British Service Armed Forces personnel. The number of PTSD cases among UK troops doubled in 2012, according to the United Kingdom’s Defense Analytical Services and Advice Agency.

“The University of Stirling and the USF College of Nursing are both successful research and teaching schools who aim to transform education for nurses and the quality of healthcare for patients and their relatives,” Dr. Lauder said. “Hopefully, the ART research we are jointly conducting here in the UK will provide new support and hope for people suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.”

Dr. Kip recently traveled to Scotland with Laney Rosenzweig, the founder of ART program, to provide a seminar on the therapy to students, faculty and staff. They also offered a three-day ART training to four highly skilled Scottish clinicians from National Health Services (NHS) Valley — a hospital system that provides healthcare services for Forth Valley region in Scotland.

“This is the first time ART training has been delivered and studied outside the United States, the first time mental health nurses have been trained, and the first research project using ART on a UK military veteran population,” Taylor said.

“Our partnership with the University of Stirling provides amazing opportunities for faculty to collaborate on comparative research evaluating how nursing and other healthcare interventions affect patient outcomes in the United States and Scotland,” said LaRon Nelson, PhD, RN, NP, assistant professor and assistant dean for Global & Community Affairs at USF Nursing. “This is exactly the type of global partnership that will yield innovative solutions for our rapidly evolving healthcare system.”

Through, our Partnership Opportunities for Wellness, Education and Research, the College extends the reach of collaborations that stretch across the region, nation and globe. POWER with Nursing provides opportunities to collaborate with the USF College of Nursing on important initiatives such as research, interprofessional education, and expanding USF global nursing programs.

-USF Health-

USF Health’s mission is to envision and implement the future of health. It is the partnership of the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine, the College of Nursing, the College of Public Health, the College of Pharmacy, the School of Biomedical Sciences and the School of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Sciences; and the USF Physician’s Group. The University of South Florida is a global research university ranked 50th in the nation by the National Science Foundation for both federal and total research expenditures among all U.S. universities. For more information, visit


Through ‘RESTORE LIVES AT USF: Education and Research to Rehabilitate and Restore the Lives of Veterans, Service Members and their Families’, USF College of Nursing faculty develop life enhancing treatments through nursing research, and educate nurses with the knowledge and skills specific to the needs of the military, veterans and their families. The ART study is an example of type of innovative research that the USF College of Nursing is developing to improve the health of our honored service members and veterans.

Media contact:
Ashlea Bailey, College of Nursing Communications 
(813)396-964, or

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