People in England with mild to moderate mental health concerns, including panic attacks, anxiety and depression, are to be prescribed self-help books which they can borrow from their local library. The Books on Prescription scheme, developed by the Reading Agency charity, is being rolled out across GPs’ surgeries and libraries in England in May.
From today, members of the public will be able to choose a counsellor or psychotherapist belonging to a register vetted and approved by the Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care. The BACP’s voluntary register has been accredited under a new scheme set up by the Department of Health and administered by an independent body, accountable to Parliament.
From 17th January 2013, clients can now pay for their sessions by debit or credit card, either online in advance or face-to-face at the beginning of the session.
Because cheques can no longer be guaranteed, and because bounced cheques can cause embarrassment and disrupt the counselling process, I will no longer accept cheques after 28th February 2013.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), depression affects more than 350 million people across the world, of all ages and from different backgrounds. With the global economic downturn causing jobs losses and putting pressure on people’s incomes, depression and other mental health conditions are on the increase. Depression is condition identified as a priority for the WHO’s Mental Health Gap Action Programme, which aims to increase mental health services in all countries across the globe; despite there being a range of treatments for depression, fewer than half of those affected receive those treatments at the present time.
According to a new major report, “Commissioning Effective Talking Therapies”, published by the Centre for Social Justice, the NHS is failing people with emotional difficulties by relying on too narrow a range of psychological therapies. The existing approach favours the disproportionate use of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), whilst invalidating the wide range of other successful therapies available, wasting millions of pounds of taxpayers’ money in the process.