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Trainees and training, Work and occupational

Workforce and training updates - July 2023

Read all the latest news from our Workforce and Training Lead.

20 July 2023

CTCP Criteria for the Accreditation of Clinical Psychology Training Programmes

The revised criteria have been out for the first stage of the consultation. This first stage has been to key stakeholders who will be responding for their organisations.

These comments will be analysed, and a post consultation document will be produced for the second public consultation phase. So, if you haven’t responded as a key stakeholder, you will have an opportunity to respond as part of this second stage consultation.

Given the importance of these standards for training all clinical psychologists we urge members to read and comment if they possibly can.

Job planning guidelines

The final draft of the guidelines on job planning in health and social care were approved by the Practice Board for consultation and are now on the BPS consultations webpage waiting for comments.

The closing date for the consultation is 31 July 2023. Please take the opportunity to read and provide comments.

NHS Workforce Plan (England)

The NHS in England has published its long-awaited Workforce Plan.

The DCP has published comments on the plan, which were recently distributed by email.

Survey of psychologists in physical healthcare settings

The survey of psychologists working in physical healthcare settings has been completed. The results are currently being written up and are proving very interesting.

There has been a 50 per cent increase in numbers since 2016 and more are being directly employed by acute care NHS Trusts in England, rather than under sub-contract arrangements with mental health trusts. The document should be out for consultation around September/October.

Guidance on the employment of psychologists in physical healthcare settings

This guidance document will be out for consultation in September/October and will provide advice about the major governance issues to consider when employing psychologists in these settings.

Some evidence came to light from the workforce survey above of junior lone practitioners in healthcare settings.

It is very important that we find a way to ensure appropriate governance structures, particularly supervision, are in place to prevent these arrangements arising.

NHS retention

We have established a small working group to look at the issue of the retention of clinical psychologists in the NHS.

We know that a high percentage of trainees (96-97 per cent) take first jobs in the NHS but the data after this period is now rather dated.

This is clearly an important issue both for the NHS and the profession. If anyone has any data, please get in contact with me by email.

Revised placement agreement about supervisor allocation

The GTiCP has produced a revised placement agreement which includes two major new points:

  1. courses should have a local agreement with neighbouring courses about what placements are shared, what unique and how liaison takes place
  2. have a statement about the use of out of region placements

Managing risk and safety planning

New NICE Guidance has been issued concerning the risk of self-harm and suicide. The guidance states that risk check lists should not be used to predict future risk and making judgements about risk using ratings of high, medium, and low.

There is not the evidence to support this practice. People are now being asked to produce a risk formulation with a more nuanced assessment of risk and with the development of a plan based on the individual’s needs.

HCPC and BPS working group

Tony Lavender (working group chair) and Nigel Atter (BPS staff) have continued to meet with the HCPC and the Professional Standards Authority throughout the year. They have written a blog update which can be read on the BPS website.

The re-registration process has proved very successful and over 97 per cent re-registered by the May deadline. They appear also have recorded a significant improvement in the recording of demographic information about registrants.

We have agreement to provide induction sessions to HCPC staff to familiarise with the training and working contexts of each type of practitioner psychologist. A joint BPS/HCPC webinar on supervision now taken place.

It is important to note that we have serious concerns about the fitness to practise processes and the processing of International applications, which we are raising directly with HCPC. These are also issues of continuing concern for the PSA as is evident in their periodic review.

We continue to work on developing a webinar for international applicants to support them with their application and preparation for working life in the UK.

Finally, HCPC has launched a free service to support registrants going through fitness to practise.

- Tony Lavender