Why should I see a clinical psychologist privately?

There are a number of different reasons to see a clinical psychologist privately:

  • If you are uncomfortable about anyone knowing you are seeing a psychologist, seeing a private clinical psychologist is the only way of ensuring others are not informed.
  • Although the quality of psychology provided by the NHS is generally excellent, psychological services are under-resourced so the waiting lists are usually six months or more. Seeing a clinical psychologist privately would ensure immediate treatment. This also allows you to choose the number of sessions you’d like.
  • Generally there are more flexible appointment times when seeing someone privately, so if you work full-time you would not need to inform your employer about your visit.

Does anyone need to know I am seeing you?

If you do not want anyone else to know that you are seeing me, I do not need to inform anyone. Everything you say to me is strictly confidential. However, there are two exceptions to this:

  • I will discuss you (without naming you) in supervision to ensure I am giving you the best possible care.
  • If, in the unlikely event, I suspect that you are at risk of harming yourself or anyone else, I have a duty to inform your GP. I would, however, discuss this with you before I speak to anyone else, wherever possible.

What happens if I want to see you for extra sessions between the agreed therapy sessions?

Please feel free to discuss this with me. I will do my best to be as flexible as possible and schedule additional sessions. There may be times when I have no opportunities to do so, but I would try to ensure that you are supported when you need to be.

How many sessions will I need to have?

This very much depends on the difficulties that you are facing. Some people experience significant improvement in their lives from CBT within 8 sessions alone, whereas others need longer.

What if I want a particular form of therapy?

We can discuss this at your assessment as it is important that you are provided with an approach that best suits you. I tailor my approach to the individual (guided by scientific principles and knowledge) and if I feel that the approach you want would not be suitable for your problems I will discuss it with you and explain why. If the approach you want is one I do not feel sufficiently skilled in, I will try to help you find someone who is.