Accessing support from NHS Herefordshire and Worcestershire Talking Therapies

At some point we all feel low, anxious, worried or depressed. It is completely normal but it can also start to impact what we do and who we are and when we reach that point it is important to get help to prevent these feelings getting worse. We understand that seeking support is a big step. There are many situations in a person’s life which may cause stressanxietylow mood or depression. We hope to provide you with support and information that will help you feel yourself again.

Our teams are trained and experienced in supporting a wide range of more common mental health issues. This often involves ‘talking therapy’ approaches which may be delivered through groups and courses, as well as 1-2-1 support.

If you're over 16 and registered with a GP in Herefordshire or Worcestershire, you can refer yourself to the NHS Herefordshire and Worcestershire Talking Therapies by phone or by completing our online referral form using the links below.

If you need support completing a referral or require information in an alternative format please call 0300 013 57 27 and we will be happy to assist you. 

Please note you must live in either Herefordshire or Worcestershire and be registered with a local GP practice to access NHS Herefordshire and Worcestershire Talking Therapies. If you live outside of these counties, find details of your local NHS Talking Therapies Service.

If you fall outside of the age brackets specified above or need support for a young person please visit our Children's Mental Health and Wellbeing website.

Frequently asked questions

What happens after I am referred?

Once you have referred yourself then you will be contacted on the telephone number on the referral form by one of our Healthy Minds administrators who will book you into a screening slot with one of our practitioners at a time and date convenient to you. Screening appointments are available within 2-3 weeks of us receiving your referral.

If you have been referred by another health professional then this referral is reviewed by one of our duty workers before we contact you to make sure we are the right service for your needs.

 

What happens during the screening appointment?

The screening appointment will occur over the telephone and last approximately 45mins. During this time the practitioner will discuss with you your current difficulties, make sure that we are the right service for you, and if so, talk about the treatment approaches that best suit your needs. It helps if you come prepared for your screening appointment by thinking beforehand the main difficulties that you need support with, and your goals for treatment.

 

What support can the service offer?

If we feel we can support you, your practitioner will talk to you about the most appropriate treatment for you needs and place you on the waiting list for this support. All of our treatment requires you to be collaborative in the process and some require you to complete tasks in between sessions to move closer to your treatment goals.

The following treatment options are available:

Supported online programme, Silvercloud.

This is different from the more general Silvercloud option which anyone can access, anytime. You will be guided through the online course with our team and it will be tailored to meet your specific circumstances.

There is no real wait to access this. You can expect to be up and running within a week or two of the assessment if this is deemed an appropriate option.

Psychoeducational courses

Online psychoeducational courses about anxiety and depression are run frequently, these are facilitated by two of our Practitioners, and run for 6 weeks. There is no expectation for you to speak about your difficulties in front of the other participants, but the courses provide a supportive environment to teach you how to understand your difficulties and make changes to work towards your goals.

Guided Self-Help

With Guided self-help you will received weekly or fortnightly telephone calls with one of our practitioners who will support you to make changes in areas that will help you to feel better. These calls last approximately 30mins, and there is an expectation to do some work to move towards your goals between the sessions.  The waiting list for guided self-help is around 8-12 weeks depending on which county you live.

High Intensity 1-1 Therapy

We run a range of traditional 1:1 support.  For example, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Dynamic Interpersonal Therapy (DIT), Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT), Counselling for Depression (CfD) along with other forms of CBT. All these will be explained to you if this is the best course of treatment for you. The waiting time depends on the type of treatment that you and your practitioner identify as the most appropriate at screening, and the area in which you live. Unfortunately some of these waiting times can be lengthy. 

We are working really hard to minimise the wait for 1:1 support as much as we can. You may be invited to access the supported online programme and/or a group session until we can confirm an appointment.

High Intensity Group therapy sessions

If it is identified at screening that you need a High Intensity approach to treatment you may be offered group therapy as a way to learn to understand your specific difficulty and ways to change this. You will be placed in an online group run by two Hi Intensity Therapists and with around 8-12 others experiencing similar difficulties to you. The facilitators will lead discussions and talk about ways to change. People can really benefit from hearing from others who are experiencing similar things to them. It creates a peer support network.

 

What can I do while I am waiting?

There are various self-help resources and other services that you can access whilst you are waiting for your treatment to commence. 

  • Silvercloud: Silvercloud courses are designed to help you improve and maintain your wellbeing by changing the way you think and feel about things. There are several free courses to pick from including positive body image, panic, COVID-19, depression, anxiety, stress and many more. All you need is access to the internet and sound on a computer, tablet or mobile. The programme is flexible so you can use it anytime, anyplace, and anywhere. They feature videos, activities, quizzes, audio guides and your own online journal. The self-led online therapy can be accessed using your own email and chosen password along with the access code: SIGNPOST. For more information and to sign up visit: Silvercloud
  • Qwell: Free, safe and anonymous mental wellbeing support for adults across the UK 
  • Self-help guides: Comprehensive digital guides covering a wide range of mental health challenges available in PDF and audio formats 
  • Every Mind Matters: Expert advice and practical tips to help you look after your mental health and wellbeing 
  • Herefordshire and Worcestershire Wellbeing and Recovery College: Courses and workshops to give people the tools, skills and understanding that they need for their own wellbeing and recovery. 
  • Here2Help (if you live in Worcestershire): Here2Help is a service that offers support for people of all ages. It includes information, advice, tools, guidance and local support available in the local community
  • Talk Community (if you live in Herefordshire): Talk Community is helping residents, businesses, community leaders and our council to make Herefordshire a better place to live and work 
  • Herefordshire and Worcestershire Wellbeing and Recovery College Courses and workshops to give people the tools, skills and understanding that they need for their own wellbeing and recovery. 
  • There’s also lots more on the Healthy Minds website

 

What if I feel worse in the meantime?

The resources and services you can access will hopefully help improve, or at least manage, how you are feeling. However, you may need to return to your GP surgery for a further discussion. If you feel like you need urgent support, or are at crisis point, then please call the local 24/7 urgent mental health helpline. It is free and open to everyone in Herefordshire and Worcestershire by calling 0808 196 9127

Making our services accessible for all

At Herefordshire and Worcestershire NHS Talking Therapies, we are committed to making our service accessible and pursuing equality within mental health care. We know that some people face barriers when accessing mental health services, and we aim to work with our service users to overcome these barriers:

Accessibility

  • Accessibility information for many of our sites and buildings can be accessed via the AccessAble website. The guides include lots of useful information including where to park, getting around the building and the location of accessible toilets.
  • Many of our wellbeing and self help support guides have been produced in alternative and accessible formats. These can be accessed via the resource section of the website.
  • If you have a communication or information support need please let us know.  We can provide information in a range of different formats, including braille, large text and easy read, and also have an interpreting and translation service available to patients and their carers. More information on this is available on the Herefordshire and Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust website.

Adaptations

You may feel that certain things are required for you to use our service comfortably. Everyone is different but below we have listed some examples of the adaptations we make on a regular basis:

Things we can do:

  • We can provide large font, braille, and easy-read documents
  • We can provide a professional interpreter/translator
  • You may prefer to work with a clinician of a certain gender and we can provide this
  • Sessions can be longer or shorter if needed, and you can have rest breaks
  • If you find our sessions contain too much information, then we’ll work with you to make the sessions suit you.

Things you can do

  • You may want to record your session to refer back to
  • Not use, or reduce eye contact if this is something that you find difficult
  • You can bring a family member or friend with you if that is helpful
  • You may want to discuss how your cultural background or religion is important to your understanding of your wellbeing
  • You can wear glasses if the room is too bright, or wear earplugs or headphones if you need to reduce background noise
  • You can use fidget toys, sit on the floor or move about during your session if that helps you to concentrate
  • If you have a health passport, you may like to bring one with you, or we can send you one to complete ahead of session.

If you feel any adaptations are necessary, please indicate this when completing your self-referral form at the appropriate point or mention to your GP if they are referring you. This will help us establish any necessary adaptations from your first appointment where possible. We will also ask about barriers in your initial assessment, and we welcome you to discuss it with us then.

Any changes that we make can be reviewed throughout treatment if you feel that there is something else that we need to know.

All of our staff receive training and access to guidance on supporting a diverse range of individuals and helping everyone in a respectful and person-centered way.

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Champion

We have an Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion Champion, who works closely with the broader Equality, Diversity and Inclusion team to align our work with the Trust values. 

If you have any queries, you can contact them at whcnhs.webelong@nhs.net with the subject line ‘Talking Therapies EDI’.

Learning styles

If you can, we would like you to tell us how you learn best as this will help us to tailor your treatment to your individual needs. For example, you may prefer visual to audio resources or wish to make notes to refer back to. Please speak to the clinicians involved in your care for more information.