The current contribution of the Department of Clinical Psychology and Counselling to the GHA Mental Health Service includes counselling in Primary Care for patients referred by General Practitioners, and a wide variety of psychological interventions for people referred from the Community Mental Health Team, Ocean Views Facility, GHA secondary care and external agencies including Social Services and the Department of Education.
The department currently has a psychotherapist working mainly in the Primary Care Centre, a counselling psychologist with a special interest and expertise in psychological interventions for children and families.
There are also two clinical psychologists who work mainly with patients from Ocean Views Facility, the Community Mental Health Team and patients referred from secondary care. All members of staff employed in the department are qualified or working towards qualification at least to a Masters level in psychotherapy or clinical psychology. The post of assistant psychologist was established in 2010, with the aim of providing an opportunity for students with a good honours degree in psychology to gain experience in the field of clinical psychology prior to application to Doctorate training courses in the UK. Additionally we have one counsellor who has an honorary contract and works one session per week on a voluntary basis.
The department’s involvement in Secondary Care services continues to increase. Specifically, staff members from the department now participate in the Diabetes Review Clinics and offer psychological support to patients newly diagnosed with this condition. They also contribute to the Palliative Care Link Group and the Motor Neuron Disease and Bariatric Surgery Multidisciplinary Teams.