EHPS National Delegate
Support the EHPS to deliver its aim of helping individuals, families, and societies to better cope with life challenges related to illness and health, by promoting rigorous science, health promotion interventions, and close collaborations.
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The first professional organization for psychologists involved in the area of somatic health and illness in Poland was brought to life in 1983 as the Somatic Patient Section of Polish Psychological Association. Almost ten years later, in 1992 the Polish Section of the European Health Psychology Society was formed. In 2002 these two sections were joined to create the Health Psychology Section of Polish Psychological Association.
Since its inception, the Health Psychology Section has been affiliated with EHPS. Kazimierz Wrześniewski was a member of the EHPS Board of Directors in 1992-1996, In 2006, the 20th anniversary conference of this society was held in Warsaw, for the first time in a post-communist country.
Basic information can be found at (in Polish only)
Health psychology has been taught in Poland since the late 1980s. At the beginning it was not a separate subject, but a component of clinical psychology courses. Now it is on the curricula in all major university centres, either as one of major courses for undergraduate students, an optional course, or part of post-diploma studies. It is possible to receive a degree preparing master’s thesis or doctor’s dissertation strictly on health psychology. There are also a number of non-academic schools that conduct so-called practical study profiles, including health psychology or its elements, mainly at the undergraduate level.
The first originally Polish handbook in health psychology by I. Heszen and H. Sęk was published in 2007, which reflects not only the needs of a growing number of students but also the maturity of that discipline in Poland. In 2022, its new edition was released.
In that light it seems paradoxical that there is still no legal regulation of the conditions for practising a profession of a psychologist in Poland: the binding act has no executory provisions. As a consequence, formally recognized procedure of authorizations of specialists does not exist.