New Patient Assessment
I am happy to receive enquiries by email. However, I would only accept a new patient referral if made by your GP. This is so that I can give you the care appropriate for you: your GP will have access to all your medical records and will be aware of risk factors specific to you. This ensures that by the time I see you I have a reasonable understanding of the background history and I am alerted to any specific areas I need to focus on.
The assessment usually takes one hour following which I will provide you with a written report within two weeks. The exception will be because I might need to obtain more information from yourself at a further interview and/or speak to other health professionals involved in your care.This will ensure that all relevant information has been considered by me before I reach my final conclusion about diagnosis and provide options for treatment.
My style of interviewing is to be reflective and I will try and engage you in this process to help you make sense of your experiences. Sometimes, I might prefer to focus on collecting information from you. Everyone is different and I try to match my style of interviewing to what I think will be most helpful to you. You will feel, I hope, listened to and understood.
It is important that you also have time to think through what we talk about and later to consider my conclusions and recommendations. I will ask you after the assessment to either email me with your preferences but sometimes we need to meet again. This might be for 30-50 minutes to talk through things again and for me to help you make a decision about how you want to take things further.
Follow up sessions
There are two types of follow-up sessions with me. One will be for individual psychotherapy with psychiatric review, if needed, in the same session. This lasts 50 minutes. The other type is for a psychiatric review only. This will last 30 minutes. Which type of session is needed and the frequency will be discussed and agreed with you beforehand.
Please be aware that I do NOT provide emergency appointments at times of crises. I would expect that at these times you would consult your GP, local A&E or your local crisis assessment team.
Liaising with other health professionals
I put considerable emphasis on working with other health professionals looking after you. I might need to liaise with them, with your permission, by phone or by email. There is no fee for doing this. If you would like me to attend a care review meeting, I will do my best to attend. There will be a fee for this.
From my experience of working with patients with eating disorders over many years, I had come to appreciate the importance of supporting carers (parents, partners and close friends) of the sufferer. For some, the occasional session to give information and offer an opportunity to support them in helping their loved one, had become an essential part of my work. I can offer this on an individual basis and, if there is a need, for a group of carers.
If this is something you wish to explore, please feel free to email me directly to discuss. There will be a fee for providing individual or group sessions.
Coaching and Mentoring
Feel free to email me to discuss if this is something that might be helpful for you. I envisage that professionals who might be struggling with coping or adjusting to work demands might benefit from non-work associated input to help them achieve their objectives.
I do not require a letter from your GP for this as it is not a clinical service. However, if I find that you would benefit from mental health interventions, I will help to sign post you to the appropriate service, too.