"Berkshire Complex Needs "

About: Windsor & Maidenhead CMHT

(as the patient),

I was referred by a GP to a local CMHT for an assessment. The referral letter was clearly addressed to the Consultant Psychiatrist. However, I was actually seen by a person who was in my view a nasty, bullying, manipulative, self-regulated therapist. This person was not a doctor, does not have the authority to discuss medication, and in my view and the evidence from the trust supported this stating that the person “does not have the full range of skills required to undertake GP referrals. This psychotherapist also seems to keep changing membership of their self-regulatory body. The UKCP (UK Council of Psychotherapy) has around 80 different sub-bodies; when I contacted the UKCP they informed me that this 'therapist' was a member of FIP (Forum for Independent Psychoanalysts). I made a formal complaint to that body, but by the end of the process the therapist appeared to have hot-footed to another body - the IGA (Institute of Group Analysts).

Through this referral I have seen the ugliest side of the NHS and it has been a watershed experience. I would urge with a long-term mental health condition to insist on a Personal Care Budget - you be allowed to request one of these by law from April 2014. This will give you the control and flexibility to chose your own treatments. Two and a half years on from my psychoanalytical assessment, I still cannot erase from my mind the image of the therapist eyes boring into me, and their negative manner.

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