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Principal Practitioner Psychologist

Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust
£35,383 to £41,115 a year
Closing date
30 Apr 2024

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This is an exciting opportunity for an experienced Practitioner Psychologist to take on a newly created role as Clinical Lead for the Wessex Kidney Centre (WKC) Psychological Support Service.

WKC is situated as Queen Alexandra Hospital (QA) is a Regional Renal & Transplantation Centre which services a population of 2.4 million, across Hampshire and Isle of Wight, plus neighbouring areas of Sussex, Dorset and Wilshire.

Main duties of the job

To provide highly specialist psychological assessment to patients of the Wessex Kidney Centre, including assessments of patients due to receive a kidney transplant and of living donors in accordance with the National Living Donor Guidelines. This will be based upon the appropriate use , interpretation and integration of complex data from a variety of resources, including psychological and neuropsychological tests, self-report measures, rating scales, direct and indirect structure observations and semi-structured interviews.

Please contact Melanie Teasdale - if you would like to discuss the role.

About us

Here at Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust, we are proud to provide expert, compassionate care for our local population. We are ranked as the third in the country for research, embedding education and training across the organisation. Our main hub is the Queen Alexandra Hospital, which is one of the largest hospitals on the south coast employing over 8,700 staff.

Our patients come from all walks of life and so do we. We hire great people from a wide variety of backgrounds because it makes our hospital stronger. If you share our values and our enthusiasm for getting it right for patients, colleagues and our community, you will find a home at Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust.

Job description

Job responsibilities

1. Clinical

1.1. To provide highly specialist psychological assessments to patients of the Wessex Kidney Centre, including assessments of patients due to receive a kidney transplant and of living donors in accordance with the National Living Donor Guidelines. This will be based upon the appropriate use, interpretation and integration of complex data from a variety of sources including psychological and neuropsychological tests, self-report measures, rating scales, direct and indirect structured observations and semi-structured interviews.

1.2. To advise on appropriate psychoeducation and training to staff to help them to provide high quality psychological and emotional support to patients.

1.3. To provide psychological support and supervision for staff working on the unit. This may be in the form of group sessions by providing a safe space for reflection and providing tools and/or sign posting for further support. This will also include either supporting, or leading small group debrief sessions following an emotionally traumatic clinical situation.

1.4. To develop psychological formulations of presenting problems or situations that integrate complex information from assessments within a coherent framework that draws upon psychological theory and evidence, and which incorporates interpersonal, societal, cultural and biological factors, across the full range of care settings.

1.5. To develop and implement plans for the formal psychological treatment and/or management of a clients psychological difficulties, based upon an appropriate conceptual framework of the clients problems, and employing methods based upon evidence of efficacy, across the full range of care settings.

1.6. To be responsible for implementing a range of psychological interventions for individuals, carers, families and groups, within and across teams, adjusting and refining psychological formulations, drawing upon different explanatory models and maintaining a number of provisional hypotheses.

1.7. To evaluate and make decisions about treatment options taking into account both theoretical and therapeutic models and highly complex factors concerning historical and developmental processes that have shaped the individual, family, carers or group.

1.8. To exercise autonomous professional responsibility for the assessment, psychological formulation, treatment and discharge of families, and to manage and maintain a caseload in line with service guidelines.

1.9. To provide specialist psychological advice, guidance and consultation to other professionals contributing directly to clients formulation, diagnosis and treatment plan.

1.10. To ensure that all members of the treating team have access to a psychologically based framework for understanding and care of clients of the service, through the provision of advice and consultation and the dissemination of psychological research and theory.

1.11. To contribute directly and indirectly to a psychologically based framework of understanding and care to the benefit of all clients of the service, across all settings and agencies serving the client group.

1.12. To undertake risk assessment and risk management for individual clients and to provide advice to other professions on psychological aspects of risk assessment and risk management in line with Trust and inter-agency policies and procedures. To assess clients for referral onto Mental Health Services should their needs be more relevant for management by those teams.

1.13. To communicate in a highly skilled and sensitive manner to clients, family, carers and others as appropriate, information that may be contentious or highly distressing concerning the assessment, formulation and treatment plans of clients under their care.

1.14. To monitor and evaluate progress during the course of both uni- and multi-disciplinary care, and to provide appropriate reports on this.

1.15. To provide highly specialist expertise, advice and support to facilitate the effective and appropriate provision of psychological care by all members of the treatment team.

1.16. To work in partnership with other disciplines and to maintain links with statutory and non-statutory and primary care agencies as appropriate.

1.17. To produce reports on clients, in a timely manner, that convey the key findings of psychological assessment and formulation and treatment outcomes in a way that does justice to the complexity of the problems described, but that are understandable to the recipients of the reports, including clients and referrers.

1.18. Will be required to sit in a constrained position for therapy and extended assessment.

1.19. May be required to tolerate and manage verbal abuse and occasional physical aggression.

1.20. Will be required to deal with the intense emotional atmosphere surrounding therapy contacts which may be frequently highly distressing on a daily basis, and to work with frequent intense concentration for much of the clinical sessions of assessment and therapy.

2. Teaching, training and supervision

2.1. In common with all Practitioner Psychologists, to receive regular clinical supervision and monthly management supervision, in accordance with good practice and BPS guidelines.

2.2. To continue to gain wider post-qualification experience of applied psychology in line with BPS policy on CPD in particular, to make links with other Clinical Psychologists and Practitioner Psychologists working in Renal Care regionally, nationally, and to attend relevant special interest groups and training sessions.

2.3. To develop skills in the area of professional post-graduate teaching, training and supervision and to provide supervision to other MDT staffs psychological work, as appropriate.

2.4. To provide professional and clinical supervision of assistant/graduate psychologists and Trainee Clinical/ Counselling/ Health Psychologists, as appropriate

2.5. To support placements for Trainee Clinical/ Counselling/ Health Psychologists, ensuring that trainees acquire the necessary skills, competencies and experience to contribute effectively to good psychological care and to contribute to the assessment and evaluation of such competencies.

2.6. To contribute to the pre- and post-qualification teaching of clinical, health, counselling and other applied psychologists, as appropriate, through contact within the locality with other Practitioner Psychologists.

2.7. Where appropriate, to offer clinical and/or professional supervision to qualified practitioner psychologists working elsewhere within the organisation.

2.8. To provide advice, consultation, supervision and training to staff working with the client group across a range of agencies and settings for the provision of psychologically based interventions to help improve clients functioning.

2.9. To contribute to the development and maintenance of the highest professional standards of practice, through active participation in internal and external CPD training and development programmes, in consultation with the postholders professional and service manager(s).

2.10. To maintain and develop skills in the area of professional pre- and post-graduate training and clinical supervision.

3. Leadership and management

There are no specific budgetary or management responsibilities attached to this post.

3.1. To contribute to the analysis, development, evaluation and monitoring of Key Performance Indicators to highlight the added value of psychology through the deployment of professional skills in research, service evaluation and audit.

3.2. To be involved, as appropriate, in the shortlisting and interviewing of assistant/graduate/ recently qualified psychologists.

3.3. To exercise responsibility with team members for the systematic governance of psychological practice within the service/team.

3.4. To ensure the development and articulation of best practice in psychology within the service area and contribute across the service by exercising the skills of a reflexive and reflective scientist practitioner, taking part in regular professional supervision and appraisal, and maintaining an active engagement with current developments in the field of neonatal psychology and related disciplines.

3.5. This post includes a service development role in building a Renal Supportive Care service in line with the Kidney Care UK Psychosocial Care manifesto (2022), which the postholder will be expected to draw upon when developing and leading the renal care psychological support service.

4. Research and development

4.1. To bring forward matters of psychology, as a senior clinician, in the evaluation, monitoring and development of the teams operational policies, through the deployment of professional skills in research, service evaluation and audit and ensuring incorporation of psychological frameworks for understanding and provision of high-quality care. To utilise theory, evidence-based literature, and research to support evidence-based practice in individual work and work with other team members.

4.2. To utilise theory, evidence-based literature, and research to support evidence-based practice in individual work and work with other team members.

4.3. To undertake project management, including complex audit, quality improvement, and service evaluation, with colleagues within the service to help develop service provision.

4.4. To undertake a personal research and development programme, developing service orientated and clinically relevant research as agreed by the Department

4.5. To work with the active departmental research team identifying local or national research projects that may be appropriate for the department to participate in.

For a full job description, please refer to the job description attached to this vacancy.

Person Specification



  • Doctoral level training in clinical/counselling/health psychology, including models of psychopathology, psychometrics and neuropsychology, two or more distinct psychological therapies and lifespan developmental psychology as accredited by the BPS.
  • Registered with HCPC as a Practitioner Psychologist and evidence of continuing professional development as required by the HCPC.
  • Eligible for Full Membership of the BPS Division of Clinical Psychology, Counselling Psychology, or Health Psychology.


  • Further training relevant to working in acute medical settings
  • Evidence of training in leadership service development, quality improvement and/or project management.
  • Pre- or post-qualification training and qualifications in research methodology, staff training and/or other fields of applied psychology.
  • A track record of conference presentations and publications in the current clinical or related area.



  • Evidence of post-qualification experience within an NHS context.
  • Experience of working in a health setting with patients who have a physical health difficulty.
  • Experience delivering highly skilled psychological assessments, interventions, follow-up and data monitoring utilising at least 2 therapeutic models.
  • Experience of working with a wide variety of client groups, across the whole life course, with presenting problems that reflect the full range of clinical severity.
  • Experience of liaising with patients, carers and families and external organisations that support these groups.
  • Ability to show autonomous professional responsibility for the assessment, treatment and discharge of clients and liaising with other professionals as and when necessary.
  • Experience of supervising pre-qualified psychologists/qualified psychologists and /or professionals from other disciplines.
  • Experience of leading MDT group work to share psychological/psychotherapeutic knowledge & skill e.g. consultation, reflective practice, supervision groups.
  • Experience designing, conducting and leading on research activities at a doctoral level including service-related research and audits.
  • Experience of teaching and training others, using a variety of complex multimedia material suitable for presentations within public, professional and academic settings.
  • Evidence of and willingness to undertake continued professional development.


  • Experience of working in a renal unit or with patients and families affected by chronic kidney disease (CKD) knowledge of the treatment of CKD including
    Any attachments will be accessible after you click to apply.


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