Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need to be referred to the St. Giles Clinic by my doctor?
We prefer to receive referrals directly from your doctor or other professional, but we would gladly discuss your needs directly with you and offer an initial assessment if appropriate.
Do you offer evening or weekend appointments?
We offer a limited number of appointments with one of our psychologists on a Wednesday evening, but we will try to accommodate your availability as best we can during the day by trying to offer appointments at lunchtime, first thing in the morning or last thing in the afternoon.
What happens if I do not want to pursue further intervention after I have been assessed?
You are under no obligation to continue to attend sessions, and we will always respect your right to terminate your therapy at any time with no cost to you as long as this falls within our terms of business.
Do I have to attend sessions at the same time each week?
We will be as flexible as we can in the appointments we offer you, but many people prefer a regular appointment time each week. We will fit in around any variations in your availability wherever we can, but given that many of our clients prefer regular slots we may not always be able to offer you an appointment at the time you require.
Will you write to my doctor or employer about me?
Ordinarily we will correspond with whoever you are referred by, but the main aim of this is to keep other people involved in your care informed of the treatment you are receiving. The information we share is minimal and given on a ‘need to know’ basis. If you are opposed to us communicating with your doctor for whatever reason then we will respect this as long as there are no issues of risk, to yourself or to others, and as long as we are not in breach of our professional codes of conduct and ethics.
Can I choose which practitioner I see?
Yes, as long as you and your chosen practitioner can agree on a mutually-convenient appointment time.
We sometimes have waiting lists, and it is therefore possible that there will be a wait to see your chosen practitioner. We will inform you of the approximate waiting time, and advise you of alternatives if this is unacceptable to you.
We have both male and female practitioners and we are happy to accommodate your preference if we are able.
Do you offer private CBT?
Yes, all of our practitioners (with the exception of our counsellor/psychotherapist) are formally trained and have extensive experience of providing cognitive-behaviour therapy (CBT) for a large range of presenting problems.
Our dedicated CBT therapists generally see those with less severe and less complex difficulties, and our psychologists generally offer CBT (and other therapies) for those with more severe, complex or enduring problems. We are happy to advise you who the most appropriate practitioner will be for you.
Do you have any specialist areas of practice?
Yes, all of our practitioners have areas of specialism, including –
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
- Mood disorders, such as depression
- Anxiety disorders, such as panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder and eating disorders
- Personality disorder
- Health psychology
- Pain management
- Survivors of sexual assault
- Relationship therapy
Will you be able to explain what the best therapy is for me?
Yes. Following your initial enquiry one of our clinical team will discuss your difficulties and explain to you the most appropriate treatments. We always use empirically-tested therapies. This means that all the practitioners are abreast of current medical research that identifies which therapies are the most effective interventions for any given problem, and we will advise you accordingly.
How do I know if you are qualified and experienced enough to help me?
All of our practitioners have met the training requirements of their respective accreditation and regulatory bodies. In the case of psychologists, this is with the British Psychological Society and the Health Professions Council. In the case of our CBT therapists, this is with the British Association of Cognitive and Behavioural Psychotherapists. In the case of our counsellor/psychotherapist, this is with the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy.
All our psychologists are qualified to the level of Doctor of Clinical Psychology or Master of Clinical Psychology. Our CBT therapists are qualified to the level of Post-Graduate Diploma, and so too is our counsellor/psychotherapist.
We all abide by our relevant Codes of Conduct and Ethics.
All our practitioners have been practicing for a minimum of 7 years since qualifying.
Do I have to lay on a couch for therapy?
No. Treatment that requires the patient to lay on a couch is psychoanalytic therapy, as developed by Sigmund Freud.
We do not offer this treatment.
Therapy takes place, face-to-face, in comfortable consulting chairs.
Will you hypnotise me?
No. We do not offer clinical hypnotism.
All of the interventions we offer are talking therapies, with the exception of EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing Therapy). EMDR is a treatment for trauma syndromes that requires the client to track a moving object with their eyes while recollecting traumatic memories, but the client is fully conscious and awake.
How many sessions will I need?
We can only give an indication of this after an initial assessment, following which we would rely on medical evidence and our own experience to advise you. Therapy can be as short as one consultation, or it can occur over months to years for more severe difficulties. We would advise you early on in your therapy as to whether this is likely or not, and you are free at any time to terminate your therapy without penalty.
Can I pay with private health insurance?
Our practitioners are registered providers for several health insurers, including BUPA, AXA-PPP and Aviva. Please contact your health insurers to enquire about your eligibility to have your treatment costs covered by your health insurance.
Will my therapy be confidential?
All the practitioners are bound by their Codes of Conduct and Ethics in relation to confidentiality. Under no circumstances will we ever breach your confidentiality without your consent, or unless there is a serious issue of risk to yourself or someone else.