Support & FAQs
1. What is a Clinical Psychologist?
A Clinical Psychologist is someone who has completed both an undergraduate degree in Psychology, as well as a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology – which is part clinical placement (across a broad range of mental health services), part University lectures, and part doctoral level research. Oftentimes they have also undertaken extensive post-doctoral training in their specialist area of mental health.
Clinical Psychologists are qualified and certified as Practitioner Psychologists with the Health Care Professions Council (HCPC), which is the Psychology profession’s regulating body. They may also be registered as a Chartered Clinical Psychologist with the British Psychological Society (BPS), which is the representative body for Psychologists in the UK. Both of these bodies have a list of certified/registered Clinical Psychologists, where you can search for and check the credentials of any Clinical Psychologist you are considering as your therapist.
Counsellors and Psychotherapists have different training pathways, and different regulating bodies. It is important to check a therapist’s qualifications and which body they are certified/registered with.
2. I’ve not had therapy before and don’t know what to expect?
Meeting a Psychologist for the first time can feel daunting. Often people come to the first session not knowing what to expect, or how they’ll feel. Dr Clair is warm, friendly, compassionate, non-judgemental and understanding. She will ensure you feel safe, relaxed, supported, and able to talk. She takes a collaborative approach, which means going at a pace and depth that feels manageable, forming a shared understanding of your difficulties, holding your desired outcomes in mind, and developing a plan of how to get there.
3. How long/often is a session?
A therapy session is 50-55 minutes in length. However, the session length may vary in order to offer the most effective service – for example, family sessions can be 90 minutes. It is preferable to meet weekly, but sessions can also be fortnightly if needed. The aim is to help you achieve resolution and progress as quickly and effectively as possible.
4. What happens if I cannot make my appointment?
I understand that life sometimes gets in the way, so I offer a 24-hour cancellation policy. If you let me know with more than 24-hours’ notice, you won’t be charged for the session. With less than 24-hours’ notice a 50% cancellation charge will apply. If you do not give any notice then the full session fee will be payable.
5. What do I do if I no longer want to continue, or if I want a break?
You can decide to pause or stop sessions at any time. There are times in the therapy journey when sessions will feel hard. It is helpful during these times to let me know how you are feeling so that we can adjust the pace if helpful. When discontinuing therapy, it is also helpful to plan for a proper therapeutic ending.
6. Do you offer insurer funded therapy sessions?
Yes, I am an approved provider for clients with AXA private health insurance. If you have cover with AXA and would like your sessions to be funded through your policy, please contact AXA and request authorisation.
If you find yourself in crisis and require urgent attention, contact your GP. Or NHS Direct on 111 if your GP surgery is closed. If you require immediate attention, please call 999 or go to the Accident and Emergency department at your local hospital.
There are also several helplines that provide support, including:
- Local NHS Urgent Mental Health Line www.nhs.uk/service-search/mental-health/find-an-urgent-mental-health-helpline
- The Samaritans on 116 123 www.samaritans.org
- Heads Together www.headstogether.org.uk
- Mind 0300 123 3393 www.mind.org.uk
- CALM 0800 585 858 www.thecalmzone.net
Papyrus 0800 068 41 41 www.papyrus-uk.org
Ask Dr Clair a Question
If you have any questions please contact me below