Acceptance and commitment therapy - Bruce Arroll

Date Published: 
Monday, June 26, 2017

Professor Bruce Arroll discusses acceptance and commitment therapy. Bruce is a GP in south Auckland, Director of the Goodfellow Unit and professor in the department of general practice and primary health care at the University of Auckland.



  • What is ACT?
  • Concept of people who are stuck and then transitioning them to flexibility.
  • Processes that underline acceptance and commitment therapy.
  • How practical is all of this in the constraints of a 15-minute consult?
  • Conditions that benefit from ACT include depression, chronic pain, diabetes, chronic fatigue.


Take home messages

  • There are treatment outcome benefits when you focus on the patient's values as it helps you understand what the patient is willing to do to support their treatment vs what you think they are willing to do.

  • Being active in your approach by using ACT often works better than empathy and a box of tissues for many patients.

  • A way to preface a change discussion: 'If you're having a bad day you can't make yourself feel better by sitting still – you need to start doing things'




Prof. Bruce Arroll
General Practitioner

To contact Bruce Click here.



Recognition of Learning Activities

Complete and submit the learning reflection form for CPD/MOPS points provided by The Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners below for recognition of learning activities.

Learning Reflection Form

This presentation is intended for qualified health practitioners professional development and should not be relied upon for any other purpose. Any opinions offered are those of the presenter or other speaker and do not necessarily represent the views of Goodfellow Unit.