FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
WHAT ARE THE ADVANTAGES OF SEEING A CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGIST?
A key advantage of seeing a Clinical Psychologist is that they are trained to work with individuals and families with a range of difficulties, using different therapies, across the lifespan. It can sometimes be difficult to access services offered by Clinical Psychologists via the NHS as these are typically a limited resource. It takes a minimum of 6 years formal training to become a Clinical Psychologist in the UK, which consists of a Bachelor level Psychology degree as well as a 3-year Doctorate level training course in Clinical Psychology (DClinPsy), thus making them Doctors in Clinical Psychology. By comparison the core training for the majority of private therapists, including counsellors and CBT therapists, is much briefer - usually less than 2 years. They are also not required to have￼ a Psychology degree and are usually trained in only one form of therapy (which will not be suitable for everybody).
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGIST AND A PSYCHIATRIST?
Psychiatrists are medical doctors who are trained to assess, diagnose and prescribe psychiatric medication. Clinical Psychologists are doctors of Psychology, not medicine, and so are not able to prescribe medication, although they are trained in diagnosis. Psychiatrists receive limited training in therapies as part of their core training, and generally do not provide therapy, unlike Clinical Psychologists. The length of time it takes to qualify as a Clinical Psychologist and a Psychiatrist is about the same.
THERE ARE SO MANY DIFFERENT TYPES OF THERAPY AND THERAPISTS - HOW DO I KNOW WHAT IS RIGHT FOR ME?
Deciding which type of therapy is right for a person can often be a complicated and confusing process. The terms 'Counselling', 'Therapy' 'Psychological Therapy' and 'Psychotherapy' are often used interchangeably but mean different things. Counselling offers a reflective space where people can discuss their thoughts and feelings at their own pace and will not necessarily involve a person being encourage to make active changes or to work towards specific goals. Psychotherapy - also commonly known as Psychoanalytic or Psychodynamic Therapy - is a form of talking therapy which places particular emphasis on the early relationship we have with our parents upon our unconscious thoughts, feelings and patterns of behaving. Psychotherapy often involves weekly (or twice-weekly) sessions over a number of years.
Psychological Therapy generally refers to structured, time-limited therapies that focus on identifying and changing unhelpful patterns of thinking, feeling and behaving, working towards specific goals. Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), Cognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT) and Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing Therapy (EMDR) are all forms of Psychological Therapy. The term 'Therapy' is often used as an umbrella term to describe a wide range of talking therapies, of which Counselling, Psychotherapy and Psychological Therapy are all forms of.
How many sessions will I need?
This will vary depending on a number of factors, and will be discussed and agreed as part of the assessment process. Clinical Psychologists work in a time-limited way with people, and the recommended treatment length for most of the therapies we offer is between 8 - 24 sessions.
WHAT ARE THE FEES?
Our fees vary depending on the therapist, type of therapy, and whether cognitive and/or psychometric assessment is indicated. If you require a written assessment report this will incur an additional charge. We always discuss fees during our initial telephone consultation, or otherwise please email us for further details. Our fees for Autism assessments are a fixed fee of £1200 and this involves 4 - 6 hours of testing and covers the costs of a comprehensive written report. The cost of an initial 50-minute assessment is £100 and fees for ongoing therapy sessions generally range from £90 - £120 (please note that for some types of therapy sessions may be 90 minutes, rather than 50 minutes). Fees for supervision, training and consultancy vary according to what is required - please contact us for more details.
IS THE INFORMATION THAT I SHARE CONFIDENTIAL?
Any information you share with us is treated as strictly confidential, apart from in certain circumstances. If we are concerned that someone may be at risk of harm (from themselves or someone else) then we have a duty of care to share information with the relevant authorities. Sometimes insurance companies require information of the progression of treatment, which we are required to provide. We will not share information with family members unless you give consent for us to do so.
HOW CAN I BE SURE THAT MY THERAPIST IS APPROPRIATELY TRAINED AND QUALIFIED?
All of our clinicians are registered with regulatory bodies which set standards for conduct and ethics. Our psychologists are registered with the Health Care Professions Council (HCPC) and the British Psychological Society (BPS), and abide by their code of conduct and ethics. Many of our clinicians are also accredited with other specialist regulatory bodies (e.g. Nursing and Midwifery Council, NMC; The British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies, BABCP). Our Links page provides details of how you can check our clinicians are appropriately qualified and registered with the relevant regulatory bodies. Our clinicians are committed to regulatory updating their clinical skills through Continuing Professional Development (CPD) and also have professional indemnity insurance, so you can rest assured you are in safe hands.
WHERE ARE YOU BASED, AND IS THERE PARKING?
We have comfortable rooms in a discreet building in the picturesque Dutch Quarter of Colchester, just off the High Street. It is easily accessible by car or public transport. See our Contact page for a map and directions. Parking is not available at the premises, but free car parking is possible on the High Street in the evening or short-stay car parking is available at the nearby Nunn's Road (Fenwick Department Store) car park.
HOW DO YOU STORE INFORMATION, AND IS IT SECURE?
At NETS we ensure that we collect and store information in line with the new rules around GDPR, as well as following good practice as advocated by our registration bodies. We are registered with the ICO (Information Commissioner's Office). In short, this means that we:
Do not ask for any personal data that we do not need to fulfil our therapeutic obligations.
Do not keep data any longer than we lawfully or contractually need to.
Do not send data to any third parties (unless we have asked your consent to do so)
Keep all personal and sensitive data in secure manual or electronic storage
Do delete data for which we have no contractual or lawful reason to hold, and review this regularly.
Do encrypt data where it is sensible and possible to do so.