In 2011, Scott Anderson (AEU Founder) read an article in the Economist related to Attention Bias Modification Treatment (ABMT). This treatment was being studied by Dr. Yair Bar-Haim at Tel Aviv University in Israel. A year later, AEU teamed up with Dr. Amy Badura Brack at Creighton, Dr. Tony Wilson at UNMC and Dr. Bar-Haim to undertake the first trial in the United States, and one of only two trials in the world, testing the effectiveness of ABMT on PTSD. In 2015, Dr. Badura Brack’s work was published in two national journals: The American Journal of Psychiatry and Cognition and Emotion in addition to numerous additional journals.
The first phase of the clinical trials was a huge success. Dr. Badura Brack and Dr. Bar-Haim both came to the same conclusion: Attention Control Training (ACT) is more effective than ABMT in military personnel with PTSD. An unexpected outcome was the literally moment-to-moment fluctuations when the vet is focused on the task at hand. All participants had improvement to some degree beyond the clinical threshold.
In September 2017, AEU and CU launched the second round of trials. These trials further demonstrated that the Attention Training for PTSD software can officially be deemed a treatment for clear-cut, uncomplicated PTSD. The software is currently formatted for PC computers and AEU is working with computer programmers to also have the software MAC compatible. We are optimistic that AEU will be able to offer the treatment this fall.
The Attention Training software for PTSD is also being tested on children between the ages of 7-14 with trauma related to community violence. These trials are close to completion. With the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, we had to temporarily halt trials on the final few participants. We are excited by the initial findings and the possible treatments that could be offered in the future for children suffering with PTSD.
In April of 2012, At Ease USA launched a clinical trial of a promising new therapeutic intervention at Creighton University. The therapy called “Attention Bias Modification Treatment,” or ABMT, was developed by Dr. Yair Bar-Haim, Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience, and Head of the School of Psychological Sciences at Tel Aviv University, who was in Omaha for the launch of this research. In this new clinical trial, lead