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Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust
Hemel Hempstead
£33,706 to £40,588 a year per annum pro rata + 5% of basic salary, min £1,136 max £1,915
Closing date
1 Feb 2023

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CBT Therapist / Other
Band 6
Part Time
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An exciting opportunity has arisen for a highly motivated dramatherapist, passionate about mental health, to work in an adult community mental health service in the North West of Hertfordshire. The post is fixed term for 18 months to cover a secondment. It is based in Hemel Hempstead, but may involve work in St Albans, and travel across the county as required.

You will provide group and individual dramatherapy assessment and treatment to service users with complex mental health difficulties. We are particularly looking for someone interested in facilitating a group for people who experience psychosis. You will be an integral member of the multidisciplinary team, contributing to multidisciplinary team meetings and case discussions. You will act as the lead professional for some service users.

Main duties of the job

To provide dramatherapy assessment and interventions for service users with complex mental health needs, including psychosis, as part of the adult community mental health team.
  • Provide assessment and intervention for individuals and groups
  • To work autonomously in assessing and treating a caseload of highly complex service users
  • Keep up-to-date clinical records of work carried out and write reports on assessment and treatment progress
  • To represent arts therapies at local forums. e.g. practice governance meetings.
  • Engage in clinical supervision and CPD
  • Contribute to service innovation projects within arts therapies and/or within MDT
  • To use outcome measures such as CORE and goal outcome measure and feedback forms to evaluate/audit the effectiveness of therapy for clients

About us

Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust (HPFT) is an outstanding organisation with ambitions to match. We are one of just five mental health trusts to achieve an overall rating of 'Outstanding' from the Care Quality Commission, and our aim is to be the leading provider of mental health and specialist learning disability services in the country.

Our family of over 3500 members of staff provide health and social care for over 400,000 people with mental ill health, physical ill health and learning disabilities across Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire, and Norfolk, delivering these services within the community and several inpatient settings. We also deliver a range of nationally commissioned specialist services including Tier 4 services for children and young people, perinatal services, plus medium and low secure learning disabilities services.

The care we provide makes a fantastic difference to the lives of our service users, their families and carers - everything is underpinned by choice, independence and equality, with our Trust values embedded throughout:

Our Trust values are:

Welcoming. Kind. Positive. Respectful. Professional.

These values are at the core of who we are, everything we do, and how we do it!

Would you like to be part of the HPFT family? Would you like work with us to ensure our service users live the fullest lives possible they can? Would you like to be supported in your career to be the best that you can be?

Then please read on...

Job description Job responsibilities

Job Summary:

To provide dramatherapy assessment and interventions for service users with complex mental health needs, as part of the adult community mental health team.

Key Relationships:
  • Service users and carers
  • Multidisciplinary team of arts therapists, social workers, nurses, psychological therapists, occupational therapists, support workers and vocational advisors etc.
  • Arts Therapists across adult mental health and across HPFT
  • External agencies e.g voluntary sector, social services, GPs
  • Contributes to service innovation projects within arts therapies and/or within MDT
  • Represents arts therapists within the SBU at the request of the head arts therapist so has working relationship across and within teams

Clinical Responsibility
  • To work autonomously in assessing and treating a caseload of highly complex service users and to use due consideration and clinical judgement of each client with regard to their specific needs, risk and mental health. To bring highly specialist dramatherapy knowledge to the assessment of service users referred to the team, (i) as part of any multidisciplinary assessment of service user needs/CPA, (ii) to determine the potential effectiveness of dramatherapy intervention/treatment, (iii) to identify treatment objectives and (iv) to identify the optimum form of treatment for an individual with reference to a range of treatment options.
  • Plans and organises a caseload of service users with very complex needs, including enduring psychotic illness/severe depression/suicidal and/or self-harming behaviour/history of sexual abuse/eating disorder/personality disorder/history of aggression or violence towards others/problems of substance misuse/learning disability.
  • Able to analyse and consider a variety of complex issues and to adapt the treatment to service users level of functioning and needs, considering the history and context in which they are a service user, including risk.
  • Manage own caseload and timetable in response to the changing needs of service users and priorities within the team and within the limitations of space and time.
  • Able to consider and provide a variety of types of work appropriate to service users who may have experiences of trauma and abuse and are at risk to themselves. This includes exploratory, reflective, supportive or developmental approaches, individual and group and to modify the work in relation to the service users capacities and functioning.
  • Uses specialist therapy techniques and advanced knowledge of and skills in drama/theatre within restricted physical environments to work with service users who can be poorly motivated and difficult to engage.
  • Attends CPAs, professionals meetings, safe guarding meetings and other clinical meetings, when possible, taking responsibility for communicating with professionals with the MDT and service users families and carers, within the boundaries of confidentiality. This communication includes specialist advice regarding highly sensitive and extremely complicated clinical issues relating to current dramatherapy treatment, future treatment, mental state and other aspects of service user care.
  • Respects the individuality and values and the cultural and religious diversity of service users. To provide a service that is sensitive to these needs and maintains awareness of own anti-discriminatory practice.
  • Responsible for assessing the suitability of referrals to arts therapies, considering all aspects of care and treatment in addition to own specialism, and discussing findings with the multi-disciplinary team.
  • Keeps up-to-date clinical records of work carried out and writes reports on assessment and treatment progress regularly and as required for CPA. Reports will be both verbal and written and will be accessible to therapists, professionals of other backgrounds and non-professionals as appropriate.
  • Provides written information on aims and objectives of the work, contributing to designs and produces information leaflets for service users and carers.
  • To work to agreed activity standards including duration of intervention
  • To be able to contain at time highly emotive and distressing clinical material (i.e. sexual abuse and other trauma). To enable the service user to disclose painful material to progress the course of treatment where appropriate.
  • To have the highly specialised skills and understanding to help service user in group and individual treatment, either brief or longer term, to disclose, process and resolve conflicts within themselves and with others.

Service Development and Improvement
  • To contribute to the development and implementation of local protocols and procedures to support delivery of arts therapies including operational issues.
  • To use outcome measures such as CORE and goal outcome measure and feedback forms to evaluate/audit the effectiveness of therapy for clients.
  • To represent arts therapies at local forums. e.g. practice governance meetings.
  • Collaborates with the multi-disciplinary team in reviewing the Arts Therapies (Drama/Music/Art) Service, contributing to service development in liaison with the manager and professional lead.
  • Contributes to proposals for policy and service development for the MDT. Evaluates options for addressing these and contributes, as agreed with manager and professional lead, in reviewing the service as a whole.

  • To communicate often delicate information with service users on individual or group treatment that requires high levels of tact and skill to enable service users to engage and progress in treatment. Need for working with highly developed communication skills to process highly charged emotions and enable service users to work through and complete treatment.
  • To provide written/electronic records, reports, letters and reviews of assessment, treatment, and termination of services, to referrals and professionals, as needed.
  • To complete and update paperwork for CPA, Risk Assessment and Case Review, throughout the course of dramatherapy service provision, for each patient.
  • Regularly inputs data and statistics into central information systems, and regularly operates computers and software, responding to e-mail communication, compiling reports and documents including therapy schedules and programmes.
  • Ensures staffs understanding of and compliance in maintaining secure use of IT and other filing systems

Planning and Organisational Skills
  • Excellent planning and organisational skills required to fulfil requirements described in
    • Working relationships
    • Communication requirements
    • Clinical responsibilities
    • Service development and improvement
  • Advanced skills required to balance priorities

Physical Working Conditions and Environment
  • To ensure that the practice environment is suitably maintained (equipment and rooms) for the services provided and that responsible officers are kept informed of unmet needs, risks and development
  • To move furniture and specialised equipment as necessary to create safe and clinically effective environments for assessment and treatment.

  • Good Honours degree in relevant subject and relevant work experience
  • M.A. (or equivalent) Dramatherapy
  • Registered with Health and Care Professions Council as an Art Therapist/Art Psychotherapist (HCPC)
  • Experience of providing a range of therapeutic interventions including: assessment, inpatient and outpatient work, individual and group work, exploratory and supportive.
  • Experience of working with people with a range of mental health problems including: a degree of personality disorder, a history of psychosis
  • A sound understanding of the theoretical issues connected to severe mental health problems, mental health diagnostic criteria and dramatherapy.
  • Knowledge and skills in assessing service users for dramatherapy and/or other treatment interventions
  • Knowledge of and skills in risk assessment and contributing to diagnosis.
  • Ability to communicate effectively in a highly emotive atmosphere, to overcome patients' psychological resistance to personal disclosure and potentially threatening information, e.g. child protection and self-harm.
  • Good communication skills: verbal & written, including presentations
  • Computer competency, including knowledge of electronic care records, email, word processing and audit tools.

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