The recent-traumatic episode protocol (R-TEP): An integrative protocol for early EMDR intervention (EEI)



The question of how early to intervene with EMDR in the face of natural and manmade disasters has been an important part of the dialogue of those working in this field. Early EMDR intervention, before consolidation of the memory has taken place, may influence adaptive integration (e.g., process sticking points), promote positive coping (especially if this is not occurring spontaneously), and contribute to the development of resilience. Informed by the work of Francine Shapiro, Roger Solomon, and all of the friends and colleagues in the field who have contributed to the evolution of their thinking and practice and following clinical and empirical experience with early EMDR intervention (EEI) in the wake of the 2006 Lebanon war, the authors have observed that the existing EEI protocols appear to focus on certain aspects or parts of the traumatic episode along an approximate time line continuum following a trauma, in accordance with the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) (APA, 2000). They concluded that the unfinished processing of recent traumatic events may require a broader focus than existing EEI protocols provided. They propose a new protocol called the Recent- Traumatic Episode Protocol (R-TEP), which incorporates and extends the existing EEI protocols by providing a new comprehensive, integrative protocol. The R-TEP thus bridges the gaps left by previous protocols and facilitates a transition from the EMD and RE protocols to the Standard EMDR Protocol. The R-TEP takes the wisdom of the Standard EMDR Protocol (Shapiro, 1995, 2001), and applies it in adapted form for recent events to provide a comprehensive approach to Early EMDR Intervention. After describing the main issues in early EMDR intervention, the authors present the Recent-Traumatic Episode Protocol and the Episode Narrative and Initial Goodle Search Script. The EMD Protocol for R-TEP Script adapted from the EMD Protocol by Shapiro (1995) is also presented, as is the Standard EMDR Protocol Script (Adapted from the Standard EMDR Protocol for R-TEP, Shapiro, 2001).


Book Section




Elan Shapiro
Brurit Laub



“The recent-traumatic episode protocol (R-TEP): An integrative protocol for early EMDR intervention (EEI),” Francine Shapiro Library, accessed July 10, 2020,

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