Connect ISP for Coronavirus Procedure

With the arrival and spread of the Covid-19 Pandemic, EMDR Therapy practitioners worldwide have sprung into action, adapting to telehealth delivery, finding new ways to teach and learn EMDR Early Intervention Protocols, launching collaborative research projects, and developing new procedures and protocols to better address current concerns. One challenge of working with Covid-related client issues is the prolonged nature of this unfolding event. Go-to Positive Cognitions such as “It’s over” “I’m safe now” “It’s in the past” or “I survived” will not be ecologically valid for most.

To address this predicament, Dr. Gary Quinn, Director/Senior Trainer with the EMDR Institute of Israel, has created a stabilization procedure (the SCP-C) specifically to calm current distress and anticipatory anxiety related to the ongoing threat posed by Coronavirus.

The SCP-C for Coronavirus can be used with concerns such as:

  • “I AM AFRAID I MIGHT GET THE VIRUS”
  • “I AM AFRAID I HAVE THE CORONAVIRUS”
  • “IT IS MY FAULT THAT I INFECTED OTHERS”
  • “I AM ALONE OR ISOLATED”
  • “I WILL HAVE NO MONEY”

The SCP-C was adapted from Dr. Quinn’s original Immediate Stabilization Protocol and edited by Brurit Laub (co-creator of the EMDR Recent Traumatic Episode Protocol) and noted EMDR author/editor Marilyn Luber. It is easy to learn and to implement with clients, and suitable for both face-to-face and virtual applications. Dr. Quinn has generously shared the SPC-C in hopes that it will be widely used.

Connect trainers Bill Brislin and Reg Morrow Robinson were recently joined by volunteer clinicians from the Orlando-Area Trauma Recovery Network to learn and practice the ISP. As first line behavioral health crisis responders, TRN volunteers are exposed to significant vicarious traumatization in addition to managing their own worries and stressors related to Covid. This practice session created an opportunity not just to learn on behalf of future clients, but to reap some of the benefits of the procedure for themselves! Our TRN participants generously allowed us to record the proceedings so that colleagues like you might benefit from watching them interact with the procedural steps, ask questions, and share feedback on their practice experiences.

Prior to watching the video, we recommend accessing and printing the full script with procedural steps here. Having the script handy will help you to follow along with the group as they dive into exploration and practice. The video is about an hour long, and while the practicum has been edited out to protect participant privacy, you’ll be able to see a live demonstration and reflections on the therapeutic work.

Big gratitude to Gary Quinn, Brurit Laub, and Marilyn Luber, as well as Bill Brislin, Reg Robinson, and the Orlando TRN participants!