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Primary Care Mental Health Practitioner

South West London & St Georges Mental Health NHS Trust
£32,466 to £39,521 a year per annum inclusive of HCAS
Closing date
28 Sep 2022

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Band 5
Contract Type
Full Time
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Band 5 Wandsworth Primary Care Network Mental Health Practitioner/Assistant Psychologist :

We have an exciting opportunity for an experienced and enthusiastic Assistant Psychologist to join our Wandsworth Primary Care Network (PCN). We are an innovative project aiming to support GPs work with people presenting with mental health related difficulties. The successful candidate will provide supervised, direct clinical work offering brief psychologically informed interventions to support motivation and improve functioning and if applicable, help people navigate the care system, access the right service and where possible, work with them to overcome barriers to engagement. The role requires working closely with GPs and other professionals in a dynamic and changing environment.

Main duties of the job

The role requires a range of clinical, liaison and administrative skills. The post holder will provide supervised, direct clinical contact, attend weekly meetings and frequently, liaise with professionals and/or services integrated within the mental health pathway within Wandsworth (including GPs and other clinicians situated within the PCN, IAPT and secondary mental health services, other community/third sector resources etc.).

The day-to-day responsibilities for the post holder will include completing assessments and collaboratively developing person-centred plans. At times, this will involve offering follow-up sessions to provide brief psychologically informed interventions and at other times making onward referrals.

The post holder will work collaboratively with both patients and/or other professionals to problem-solve and facilitate the referral process so the person can access the right type of support. Therefore, a flexible, proactive, and responsive approach, as well as a candidate who feels comfortable working independently, managing their workload, prioritising tasks, and effectively using supervision and peer support will be valuable to the role. The nature of the post means that the successful candidate will increase their knowledge about mental health consultation, formulation and community services.

About us

Career development opportunities:

We are committed to get the very best out of our staff and support staff in their career aspirations. We have career pathways available, where you will be able to develop your skills and build on your experience. For this role, we offer the option of attending continuing professional development sessions specifically for aspiring clinical psychologists working at the Trust in various roles and being part of that community.

Flexible working:

As one of the few Trusts in London we are proud to offer flexible working as part of our new ways of working, and we are happy to talk flexible working at the interview stage. In this patient facing role, the postholder will be asked to deliver direct clinical work in person from GP surgeries within surgery open hours, usually Monday to Thursday in the time frames from 9am to 5pm, with Fridays kept for supervision, team meetings and CPD. However, there are some opportunities for remote working when you are not required at your GP base.

Job description Job responsibilities

About Us:

The Primary Care Network (PCN) Mental Health Practitioner/Assistant Psychologists are currently made up of a team of 7, Band 5 assistant psychologists who are located at different PCNs across Wandsworth. The team is supervised by a lead clinical psychologist and managed by the Trust. As this role is relatively new, we are an enthusiastic group keen to contribute to the develop of the role and improve the type of mental health support available to those who require it in primary care. The successful candidate will join the Battersea PCN and will be located at GP surgeries associated to that network. An extensive induction and ongoing training opportunities will be provided.

We are a relatively new team, having been introduced as part of the NHS Long Term strategy. The Trust is keen to collaboratively evaluate and continue developing the role, so this is also a unique opportunity for the person joining the team to help contribute and shape the service.

About our locations:

Tooting (Wandsworth)

Our Trust headquarters is located within the impressive grounds of Springfield University Hospital in Tooting and we also operate in nearly 100 other locations throughout the UK. This is easily accessible via the Northern Line (Tooting Bec Station) and via private transport. The Trust provides subsidised parking fares for all our substantive staff. Our main site is located immediately next to Tooting High Street where staff can easily access a range of shops, cafs and restaurants.

Person Specification Experience Essential
  • Relevant clinical experience
  • At least twelve months experience of working with people who have experienced serious ongoing mental health problems
  • Experience of research based/reflective practice e.g. understanding and ability to use supervision to reflect on skills, attitude and knowledge and develop these by using evidence-based practice.
  • Experience of supervision and/or mentoring of junior staff and students
  • Experience of working as a Recovery Support Worker in Mental Health
  • Experience of using Cognitive Behaviour Therapy with clients with mental health problems
  • Experience of motivational interviewing techniques
Training & Qualifications Essential
  • An upper second-class honours degree or higher in psychology
  • Entitlement to graduate membership of the British Psychological Society Evidence of continuing professional development
  • Further post graduate training in relevant areas of professional psychology and mental health practice, such as delivery of evidence based psychological therapies for severe mental health problems
  • Training in support of people with mental health problems
  • Training in recovery approaches in mental health
Knowledge & Skills Essential
  • Able to proactively and independently manage workload
  • Ability to provide quality care that is responsive to service user needs, without close supervision
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Good organisational skills
  • Resilient: able to cope in difficult interpersonal situations oApproachable
  • Self-aware, self-confident and intrinsically motivated to do a good job and to motivate others
  • Ability to communicate sensitive information to patients, carers and colleagues in a way that addresses psychological resistance
  • An understanding of psychological therapy applied to severe and enduring mental health problems and an adequate theoretical knowledge of CBT
  • An ability to apply existing psychological knowledge to a primary care mental health context
  • An understanding of psychology applied to mental health care oSpecific competences in evidence-based psychological therapies for severe mental health problems
  • Knowledge of academic publications

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