psychologists of diverse backgrounds, clinical orientations and
university affiliations to do so. (APA backed the formation of
Thanks in large part to Khoury’s urging, and with
encouragement from LebMASH and other advocacy
organizations, LPA went on to achieve a major victory for LGBT
rights: In response to a television program arguing in favor of
reparative therapy, LPA and the Lebanese Psychiatric Society
issued a joint statement on homosexuality similar to APA’s 1975
policy. The LPA statement, issued in May 2014, explains that
homosexuality is not a disease and does not require treatment.
“Brigitte was key to making that happen,” says Fattal, who
notes the statement has drawn significant international media
On the research front, Khoury directs AUB’s Arab
Regional Center for Research, Training and Policy Making in
Mental Health. The center is working with the World Health
Organization as a regional field study center to collect clinical
data for the International Classification of Diseases, the ICD-
10. One of the projects, on transgender people from the Arab
region, will be used to inform the upcoming revision of the
document, the ICD- 11. Those data also will be used as part of
a comparison study on transgender populations in Mexico,
Lebanon, India and South Africa.
Khoury is also on the faculty of medicine in AUB’s
department of psychiatry, where she directs and manages the
clinical psychology training program and supervises psychology
interns, including on LGBT clinical issues. And she teaches
classes in AUB’s medical school on psychopathology, sexuality
and sexual health, and other mental health topics.
“When I started teaching, I had students ask me, ‘Isn’t
homosexuality a disease, a psychiatric illness?’” she says. “So
really, we started educating them from scratch.”
Some students made snide comments about the class
content, but others experienced relief, coming to Khoury
with their sexual concerns and seeking her out for therapy.
As a result, Khoury sees a large number of LGBT clients in
her practice, helping them to better accept and understand
themselves, gain greater self-esteem, and help to educate their
family members about what it means to be gay.
“No one chooses to be gay or lesbian,” Khoury explains
to parents. “It’s your same son or daughter — nothing has
changed. The things you like about them are still there.”
For Khoury, receiving the LebMASH award is both an honor
and an incentive to keep moving forward on this important
human and health rights issue.
“The fact that this award was given in Beirut, in Lebanon,
has a lot of meaning,” she says. “It says, ‘This is a group of
people who need health services, who deserve the best health
practices we can offer because they’re just people like us.’” n
Access a wide range of MHS Assessments on a secure, easy to use website.
•Safe & Secure
Meets and exceeds HIPPA, FERPA, and PIPEDA requirements.
Data can be customized to how you work.
Fast, easy, and accurate administration with automated scoring.
MHS.com/onlineassessments A S S E S S M E N T S
Multi-Health Systems Inc.
USA Tel: 1.800.456.3003 / CAN Tel: 1.800.268.6011
mhs.com • firstname.lastname@example.org