Our Purpose

As healthcare professionals, through our shared interest in hypnosis,  we are dedicated to:

  • Provide educational experiences for qualified health professionals
  • Support and promote professional development of health care professionals in the clinical applications of hypnosis
  • Encourage cooperation among members of professional and scientific disciplines with regard to the ethical use of hypnosis
  • Maintain standards of ethics consistent with the codes of ethics of American Society of Clinical Hypnosis, the Society for Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis and the International Society of Hypnosis
  • Support communication with recognized national organizations in the furtherance of ethical research and clinical applications of hypnosis.
  • Bring awareness to health care professional and the public about the benefits of the clinical applications of hypnosis

Our History

The Oregon Society of Clinical Hypnosis (OSCH) is a non-profit organization with a rich history that dates back to 1953.   John G. Watkins, Ph.D., Chief Psychologist for the Veterans Hospital in Portland and a part-time private practice in Tigard, started giving weekly courses in hypnotherapy in 1953.  Seven to ten participants regularly attended these courses over the next several years.

From these participants emerged a small, dedicated, core of individuals which included Walter R. Lindsey, D.D.S., H. Clagett (Larry) Harding, M.D., and surgeon Dan N. Steffanoff, M.D.  They shared a strong desire to promote ethical use of clinical hypnosis and educate others in uses of medical hypnosis.  Together they established the Portland Academy of Hypnosis in 1956.  Walter Lindsey was the first president of the Academy.  OSCH has been involved in hypnosis training and education from that time to the present.  To view the entire list of former OSCH Presidents, please click here.

In February 1997, a Code of Ethics was approved by the Portland Academy of Hypnosis.  In 2002, the name of the organization was changed to Oregon Society of Clinical Hypnosis.  OSCH has carried on the work dedicated to providing educational opportunities for qualified health care professionals desiring to learn hypnosis.   From that time to present, OSCH has trained hundreds of licensed health care professionals in how to use clinical hypnosis safely and ethically within their scope of practice.  

All training programs utilize current hypnosis research and information consistent with the American Society of Clinical Hypnosis (ASCH) guidelines.  ASCH is the largest U.S. organization for health and mental health care professionals.  Milton H. Erickson, M.D. founded ASCH in 1957.

From a Western point of view one of the decisive moments for hypnosis itself dates back to the 18th century.  Interested in the history of hypnosis?

Read about the history of hypnosis 


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