Healthy Minds is your local IAPT service, IAPT stands for Improving Access to Psychological Therapies. All of us at some point 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 stress, anxiety, low mood or depression. We hope to provide you with support and information that will help you feel yourself again.
Our NHS Healthy Minds teams cover Herefordshire and Worcestershire and provide a range of free, confidential support. This includes:
Online therapy which you do at your own pace and in your own time
Groups and Courses where you can share (as much or as little as you wish) and learn from other people
Or more traditional 1:1 support
We can also help you access some of the great resources available in your local area which might be more appropriate for you, or which can complement the service we provide.
If you live in Herefordshire refer online or call: 01432 220507
If you live in Worcestershire refer online or call: 03000135727
Benet Building, Ruckhall Lane, Belmont, Hereford, HR2 9RP
Office: 01432 220 507
The Wulstan Unit, Worcester, Worcestershire, WR5 1JG
Call: 0300 013 57 27 - Option 1 - between 9.00am and 5.00pm Monday to Friday.
The Robertson Centre, Bewdley Road, Kidderminster, Worcestershire, DY11 6RJ
Call: 0300 013 57 27 - Option 3 - between 9.00am and 5.00pm Monday to Friday.
Smallwood House, Church Green West, Redditch, B97 4BD
Call: 0300 013 57 27 - Option 2 - between 9.00am and 5.00pm Monday to Friday.
Prospect View, 300 Pickersleigh Rd, Malvern, WR14 2GP
Call: 0300 013 57 27 - Option 4 - between 9.00am and 5.00pm Monday to Friday.
What happens after I am referred?
Before you start treatment, we have to have a more detailed conversation to better understand how you’re feeling. We call this an ‘assessment’. It is usually done over the phone and helps us identify the most appropriate support we can offer
Currently it may be up to 6 months from when you refer before we can book you in for this initial assessment. The team are working really hard to minimise this wait as much as we can. We hope it will be sooner, but we regularly receive more than 1,000 referrals each month, so demand for us is really high.
After around 10 weeks from your referral we will write to you. We will aim to provide more information about when your appointment for the assessment may be. In this letter we will also provide lots of resources and details of support you can access in the meantime.
What can I do while I am waiting?
The letter we send you after around 10 weeks from your referral will include lots of resources and links. But some of these you can access yourself, today. These include:
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
When will I receive an appointment for my telephone assessment?
Currently it may be 4 to 5 months from the point of referral before we can book you in for this initial assessment. As soon as we are able to offer you a telephone appointment for this, we will be in contact by phone or post. If you no longer feel you need the appointment we will include details of who to contact. If you can’t make the appointment time we have offered, you can get in touch and we will do our best to rearrange as quickly as we can.
What is the assessment like?
‘Assessment’ sounds a bit scary, and you might also hear it called a ‘screening appointment’, which isn’t a particularly friendly term either. Really though, it is just a conversation with our team. You can share a bit more information about how you feel, what makes you feel worse, and what you do to make things a bit easier. Our team are completely non-judgmental, and the discussion will help us identify what the next steps might be.
What are the next steps after my assessment?
If we feel we can support you, we generally have three types of service we can offer. Some people may access one of these, others may use a mix – it really depends on each individual. Our three services are:
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.
If the thought of talking about your feelings in front of other people sounds daunting, don’t worry, that’s perfectly normal. But our group sessions are really helpful and if they are right for you, we will support you to access one in your local area. People can really benefit from hearing from others who are experiencing similar things to them. It creates a peer support network.
Groups sessions are scheduled frequently across both counties and can run for 6-8 weeks.
You may have to wait a few weeks for a session covering a topic most relevant to you.
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.
Unfortunately there can be a further, lengthy wait this type of treatment, depending on which is appropriate.
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.
We hope this provides a useful guide to how our Healthy Minds service works. Please note the information around waiting times is a guide only, and we hope to see people much sooner. We also feel it is important that we are open and transparent from the start. We have a plan in place to reduce waiting times as much as we can. Please don’t be put off from accessing our service if you think we can help.
I will be taking away an entire toolbox of knowledge, understanding and ways to manage and boost my self-esteem. I have grown and made many positive changes over the weeks as a result of this group and I now understand myself much better and view life through a completely different lens. My outlook on past situations has changed and I have developed the skills of self compassion and the importance of self-care. Going forward I feel totally free from the fear and constraints of low self-esteem.
I can’t thank the team enough they are amazing kind and compassionate humans and it has been a pleasure to be part of their group.
Psychological Wellbeing Practitioners (PWPs) help people improve their mental wellbeing through a range of interventions such as short educational courses, online therapy programme (SilverCloud) and Guided Self-Help (face to face or via the telephone). This includes setting realistic goals and looking at how what we think and what we do affects the way that we feel.
A PWP can offer up to 6 one to one sessions, each lasting around 30mins. During these sessions questions will be asked in order to monitor your progress.
What we think and what we do affect how we feel. When we have negative or anxious thoughts and listen to them, we can begin to change our behaviour and act in ways that reinforce the thoughts. We can all develop patterns of thoughts and behaviours that are unhelpful; after all we’re only human.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is an approach that helps you recognise and change those patterns. By changing what we think and what we do, we can change how we feel for the better, and this is what your CBT Therapist will help you to do.
Taking part in CBT involves, attending weekly sessions that are typically 50-60 minutes
Our Counsellors’ are trained to listen to you and value your point of view. We aim to provide a supportive and therapeutic space to help understand your thoughts and feelings.
Counselling is a form of talking therapy that has been proven to help lift symptoms of depression. Depression can be caused by many different life events and situations; including bereavement of a loved one, relationship difficulties, low self-esteem and changes in circumstances.
Counselling will generally run for 6 weekly sessions and each session lasts for 50 minutes. During these sessions we will ask you to complete some questionnaires for us to monitor your progress.
If you access Worcestershire Healthy Minds, you will also have access to a specialist employability service, delivered in conjunction with Mental Health Matters. This additional service will give access to Employment Advisors to provide specialist free confidential advice if you are unemployed and looking at gaining employment, as well as support if stress, anxiety and depression are affecting your work. You can find out more about the employment service by heading to the Mental Health Matters Website
If you access Herefordshire Healthy Minds, you will also have access to Landau Herefordshire an employment and training services. If you are unemployed and looking at gaining employment, as well as support if stress, anxiety and depression are affecting your work. You can find out more about the employment service by heading to the Landau Herefordshire Website
My name is Richard, and I was referred to Healthy Minds by my GP, following years of suffering Complex PTSD, anxiety and depression.
I had hit a real low and didn’t see any way out of it all. I’d been through numerous counselling, group sessions and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy over the years, but always felt slightly misunderstood and as if an endless supply of medication was the only solution.
If I’m honest, I had my doubts and I was sceptical about approaching the service after what I can only describe as previous negative experiences with therapy, counselling, etc. I felt like I was taking the wrong turn, again. The fact that we couldn’t meet face to face and that sessions were to be on the phone because of Covid restrictions added to the thoughts of, “How can this possibly work?”
I was proven wrong. Since accessing Healthy Minds I have felt relieved, positive, motivated, and I have a new-found energy.
When I first accessed the service, I hadn’t been out of the house for months. My therapist tried to arrange to meet up one day at my home to go for a short walk. I cancelled the appointment the day before; I just felt I couldn’t face leaving the safety of my home. She then suggested that whilst on the phone, I went to stand outside my front door. I couldn’t even manage that. This got me thinking, “If I don’t begin to make a change, how will I ever make that step forward?”
So, a few days later, I hesitantly took my first steps outside the house. I was able to go for a short walk near my home for about half an hour. We even did one session on the phone while I walked.
I received a phone call a few days later informing me of a charity who were holding a walk/run challenge for the whole month of April to complete 150 miles. I jumped at the chance to do it; it seemed like the perfect opportunity to do something positive, not just for myself, but for others, too. I completed the 150 miles within 18 days (the first person to reach that target), and continue to go for daily walks (about 8 miles a day). I also raised over £1450 for the charity. The support of family and friends was the catalyst to really motivate me to take on the challenge.
However, without the support, encouragement and help from my Healthy Minds therapist, I would never have been able to achieve what I have. If I can do it, anyone can! To access the Healthy Minds services, you can make a self-referral on their website. It will be the start of a new you, a new future, and I have no hesitation in recommending their services.
My message to anyone struggling and thinking of accessing the service would be, ‘Do it!’ It’s been the most positive experience for me, even from the very first phone call. Immediately on contact with Healthy Minds I felt that here was someone who understood me, was empathic, non-judgemental, understood my symptoms, and how they affected me, and who would encourage me and made me feel that there was, after all this time, light at the end of the tunnel.
My therapist has a very positive energy and approach, and a personality that I instantly connected with. Whilst I am still early on in the process of recovery, without her help, support and advice, I wouldn’t be on this journey to finally getting my life back on track and taking back control. She has made sense of what, more often than not, felt like the senseless.