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Expert Profile - Rogier Hoenders

Dr. Rogier Hoenders

MD, Integrative Psychiatrist

Senior Researcher and Director of Center for Integrative Psychiatry (CIP) in Lentis/Groningen

Co-Founder and Chair of the Dutch Consortium for Integrative Medicine and Health

Director of the Biennial Congress for Integrative Psychiatry

Board member of the International Network for Integrative Mental Health (INIMH)

Dr. Rogier Hoenders’s Bio:

Rogier Hoenders is an integrative psychiatrist, senior researcher and director of the center for integrative psychiatry (CIP) of Lentis in Groningen, the Netherlands. Lentis is a large mental health institution that covers a large part of the north of the Netherlands, serving 25.000 patients with 4000 employees. Rogier is also the deputy-director of the residency program psychiatry of Lentis and a clinical instructor in psychiatry. He initiated and directs the Lentis lifestyle program, in which patients as well as staff members are trained in mind-body medicine and a healthy lifestyle. In 2014 he obtained his PhD in integrative psychiatry from Groningen University. Rogier’s current research interest is in mind-body medicine, spirituality, integrative medicine and herbs/supplements for mental disorders. He runs RCTs on the effects of Yoga, Mindfulness and Lifestyle change. Rogier is co-founder and chair of the Dutch Consortium for Integrative Medicine and Health

What life events or challenges that you’ve experienced (could be minor, could be major) – whether you’ve experienced them directly or via someone close to you, have had any type of impact on your desire to pursue a career in psychiatry?

I wanted to become a psychiatrist since early high school because since then I was fascinated by how the mind works. I attended a talk on Freud when i was 14; did not understand anything, but i was attracted to the field. I eventually became a psychiatrist, having done a great job, but found the profession too narrow. I started looking at other medical and spiritual traditions found in my home in Tibetan medicine and Tibetan Buddhism.

How did those events impact you emotionally/morally? How, if at all did those events impact the way you view how our current system teaches us to treat patients with mental health challenges?

I always believed in an holistic approach having grown up in a family that encouraged it, and seeing it practiced first hand (father is a family doctor and acupuncturist/homeopath; mother is a nurse and naturopath). Throughout my life, I was fortunate to meet many mentors in both Western medicine, as well as in the sciences of traditional medicines (Aztec, Tibetan, acupuncture) and in spiritual traditions (Franciscan monk, healers, Tibetan lama’s).

When and why did you decide to actually focus on practicing Integrative Psychiatry, specifically, and how was your decision shaped by the experiences above?

I decided in 2005 after completing my specialization as a psychiatrist, that I would begin to conduct my own first research on the use of CAM in psychiatric patients. I met Prof Dr. David Servan-Schreiber, who became a dear friend and also mentor with colleagues. I then organized a conference on integrative psychiatry (first one in Holland) and it was a huge success, more then 1200 participants and 10% of all psychiatrists on the country were there and I learned about the American Academic consortium for Integrative medicine.

What methods or practices do you utilize to help individuals get/feel better?

Western psychiatry: if needed medication or herbal medicine, always psychotherapy (psycho-analytic, systemic, client-centered), often creative expression (drawing, painting, journalling), and lifestyle change, such as nutrition, exercise, relaxation, sleep, meditation, spirituality.

How did people react when you share this Integrative/Holistic approach with them – whether it be patients or other doctors?

Majority of people very positive, happy, grateful,

5-10% of doctors/scientists are critical/negative.


Organization: Center for Integrative Psychiatry (CIP)

Link to Contact: https://www.lentis.nl/contact/

Website: https://www.lentis.nl/


Linkedin: Rogier Hoenders


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