Counselling waiting times improve

David Smith

David Smith

Updated in News

WAITING times for counselling have been improved since it was revealed hundreds of people in York and Selby were waiting many months for treatment.

In September, The Press reported that 323 people in need of high-intensity counselling for conditions including severe depression and post-traumatic stress disorder had been put on a 14-month waiting list for help.

It was described as “an absolutely shocking situation for us to be in in the 21st century” by David Smith, then chief executive of the charity York Mind.

Figures have since shown that a further 670 people were waiting more than four months to be assessed for low-intensity counselling.

Now, providers Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust have said improvements have been made, with 128 people with severe mental health problems currently on a ten-month waiting list for high-intensity cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT).

Jill Copeland, chief operating officer at the Trust, said: “I'm delighted that we've been able to make some big improvements in our IAPT (Improving Access to Psychological Therapies) service so that more people are now able to benefit from psychological therapies. We are also looking forward to working with commissioners to make the service even better in future. “

A waiting list for people in need of low-intensity counselling has been all but cleared, with 26 people waiting for treatment.

There are 79 people waiting for a telephone assessment.

Mr Smith, now director of development at The Retreat, said: "After the well-publicised difficulties people across York and North Yorkshire have faced in accessing vital talking therapies it is reassuring to see uptake is now increasing and more people are getting access to what can be life-changing therapies.

"There is still a long way to go to ensure the full range of therapy is readily available to all who need it.

"It can be hard to appreciate the importance talking therapies play in helping many people overcome mental ill-health."

After a telephone assessment, some people are entered into computerised CBT or "guided self-help".

Others at "step two" of the IAPT service receive low-intensity CBT for people with conditions including mild to moderate depression, anxiety and panic disorders, and OCD from a "psychological wellbeing practitioner”.

“Step three” is delivered by high-intensity cognitive-behavioural therapists for people with conditions including severe depression, social phobia and post-traumatic stress disorder. Other treatments can also be used.

There has been a 46 per cent rise in attendance since October.

Comments (4)

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12:29pm Fri 14 Mar 14

rothko says...

How many people have been removed from the waiting lists after a telephone assessment, rather than being moved on to face to face CBT?
How many people have been removed from the waiting lists after a telephone assessment, rather than being moved on to face to face CBT? rothko
  • Score: 5

1:21pm Fri 14 Mar 14

Teabag1 says...

Telephone assessment! jesus christ is this an improvement?!?
Telephone assessment! jesus christ is this an improvement?!? Teabag1
  • Score: 3

1:38pm Fri 14 Mar 14

Digeorge says...

Telephone assessment what a joke!

You can score yourself on line anyway for various different psychiatric disorders.

Don't start me on those tests for neuro-pscyhologists - yes they will put every one on them given half a chance with or without degrees. Waste of time.

And so the figures have shot up by 307! That is progress? I don't think so!
Telephone assessment what a joke! You can score yourself on line anyway for various different psychiatric disorders. Don't start me on those tests for neuro-pscyhologists - yes they will put every one on them given half a chance with or without degrees. Waste of time. And so the figures have shot up by 307! That is progress? I don't think so! Digeorge
  • Score: 2

2:30pm Fri 14 Mar 14

boroboy66 says...

When did they improve?,referred apx 2mths ago received a letter stating will be up to a year and to ring if still interested!,what on earth was it befor the improvement then.
When did they improve?,referred apx 2mths ago received a letter stating will be up to a year and to ring if still interested!,what on earth was it befor the improvement then. boroboy66
  • Score: 2

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