P rincipal Clinical Psychologist

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Service Management and Policy Development

  • Having lead responsibility for the management, development, implementation and evaluation of at least one psychological therapy for psychosis or personality disorder.

  • As part of the above to manage a multi-dimensional service which ultimately aims to ensure that all those patients who have a diagnosis of psychosis or personality disorder in the hospital (the vast majority) are assessed for suitability for psychological interventions in the hospital, and where that need is identified, ensure that they are provided with a suitable intervention.

  • To develop their service area with an aim to ensure best practice through interpretation of national guidelines (eg SIGN, QIS), professional standards (BPS) and hospital policies and procedures.

  • To have an overview of all the cases in the hospital; e.g. managing referrals, completing needs analysis that apply to their PTS area of responsibility.

  • To ensure that there is a variety of psycho-social and personality disorder interventions available – namely group and individual psycho-education programmes, and group and individual psycho-therapy programmes for their areas of responsibility

  • Have full responsibility for the development of assessment and treatment protocols to be used with patients with a diagnosis of psychosis and personality disorder who are referred to their area of responsibility. This involves either developing the protocols personally or supervising others suitably qualified personnel in doing so.

  • Ensuring that all those patients who are referred into their service are offered a pre-assessment visit in order to ascertain suitability for treatment as indicated by the referral criteria..
  • Ensuring that all those patients who are accepted into the service undertake detailed assessments according to the assessment protocol leading to a formulation that incorporates all the complex information gathered from personal and third party interview, file review, and psychometrics and draws on a range of theoretical and therapeutic models

  • Ensuring that when appropriate, patients are offered the appropriate interevntion (either in individual or group settings) on the basis of the assessment and formulation that and is directed at alleviating their distress and/ or addressing their maladaptive/risk behaviours associated with their psychosis or personality disorder.

  • To monitor service delivery and evaluate the effectiveness of the various interventions. As this is a service for which there is no identified ‘best practice’ for mentally disordered offenders, the postholder is expected to conduct research and evaluation and keep abreast of current practice in order to develop best practice guidelines and contribute to the literature in this area.

  • To exercise responsibility for the systematic governance of psychological practice within their area of responsibility within the Psychological therapies Service.

  • Responsible for managing all the files of patients referred to their service.

  • To report to and provide expert psychological opinion to senior management regarding matters relating to their area of responsibility within the PTS Service and provide expert advice to senior management regarding related issues.

  • To ensure effective, efficient and economic utilisation of resources (staff involvement, time dedicated by staff, supervision) in respect of their area of the PTS Service.

  • To chair the appropriate Steering Groups related to their area of the PTS service

  • To participate as a senior clinician in the development of a high quality, responsive and accessible service for clients with the ward/service, including advising both service and professional management on those aspects of the service where psychological and/or organisation matters need addressing

  • To exercise delegated responsibility for managing the psychological resources available to the ward and their areas of PTS responsibility both in terms of psychological staff and psychological materials employed in the assessment and the treatment of patients.

Patient Care, organisation and Planning

    • To provide a Clinical Psychology service to mentally disordered offenders with complex needs in a maximum secure setting. This involves taking lead responsibility for the delivery of psychological care to patients on the ward. This involves highly specialised psychological assessment, formulation, and delivery of individual and group, evidence based interventions and evaluations of interventions

  • Providing highly specialist psychological assessment based upon the appropriate use, interpretation and integration of complex psychological data from a variety of sources including psychological, neuropsychological tests, self-report measures, rating scales, direct and indirect structured observations and semi-structured interviews with mentally disordered offenders, family members, nursing staff and others involved in the client’s care.

  • To make highly skilled evaluations and formulations leading to decisions about treatment options taking into account evidence based theoretical and therapeutic models and highly complex factors concerning historical and developmental processes that have shaped the individual
  • Ensuring, coordinating and monitoring the provision of a psychological care package as derived from the formulation either through individual clinical psychology work, referral to Psychological Therapies, joint-working within the team or the supervision of other members of staff who provide the intervention

  • To be responsible for implementing and coordinating a range of psychological interventions for mentally disordered offenders, both individually and in groups, within and across teams employed individually and in synthesis, adjusting and refining psychological formulations drawing upon different explanatory models and maintaining a number of provisional hypotheses.

  • To lead and manage complete programmes of care (individual or group) developed from an evidence-base, and where there is an absence of evidence, to develop these in a methodological manner consistent with the standards of the hospital. .

  • To exercise full responsibility and autonomy for the treatment of and discharge of patients receiving psychological care within the service/team.

  • To undertake risk assessment and risk management for each mentally disordered offender and to provide both general and specialist advice for psychologists and other professionals on psychological aspects of risk assessment and risk management.

  • To make complex neuropsychological assessments of patients with complex developmental and forensic backgrounds involving choosing appropriate assessments, interpreting results and making recommendations about the implications for management and, if appropriate, rehabilitation. To make referrals to the Specialist Neuropsychology Service as appropriate.

  • Acting as a conduit to the Psychological Therapies Service: matching the needs of patients to the criteria for each Therapy; having an overview of sequencing of therapies and progress made.
  • Providing consultancy to the Clinical Team and ward-based staff on psychological matters. This includes providing highly specialist psychological formulations of patient’s experiences and making them accessible to other team members. This entails being able to communicate highly complex and sensitive information to other professionals, in an appropriate and understandable manner.

  • Attendance at weekly Clinical Team Meetings and providing written reports.

  • Report writing, including Annual and Intermediate Review Reports, Court Reports, reports for the Scottish Executive, Parole Board and Mental Health Tribunals.

  • Working with the Psychology Department to monitor psychological need, agree priorities for service delivery and help provide a hospital-wide forensic clinical psychology service.

  • To practice and promote multi-disciplinary working.

  • To act as care-co-ordinator within a CPA construct, where appropriate, taking responsibility for the initiation, planning and review of care plans. This involves monitoring patient progress and suggesting new interventions and sequencing.

  • Taking on role as therapist for CBT for Psychosis as part of the service carrying a small caseload of individual clients (this involves the assessment, formulation, intervention and evaluation process as outlined above for working with clients on the ward)

  • Taking on the role as facilitator, running group psychological interventions for psychosis.

Staff Management, Training and Supervision

      • To be responsible for recruitment of members of the PTS teams they are responsible for

      • To be responsible for identifying training needs of all staff involved in the PTS they are responsible for and to provide training (either personally or by recruiting experts in the area)
      • To be responsible for work allocation to and direct psychological supervision of members of staff involved in the PTS they are responsible for (clinical psychologists, trainee psychologists, assistant psychologists, clinical nurse specialists, nurses) and to undertake appraisals and personal development plans for those members that are line managed by them.

      • To provide regular clinical supervision to Clinical Psychologists, Assistant Psychologists, Trainee Clinical Psychologists, Clinical Nurse Specialists, Forensic Psychologists Psychiatrists and Nurses involved in the PTS Service they are responsible for.. In the absence of direct supervision of these therapists, to be responsible for the provision of supervision from suitably qualified personal (either from within the core team or from the external consultant)

      • To provide teaching and training on psychological issues to other professionals in the hospital.

      • To manage the workload of assistant psychologist on the ward

      • To provide clinical placements for trainee clinical psychologists, ensuring that they acquire the necessary clinical and research skills to doctoral level where appropriate, and competencies and experience to contribute effectively to good psychological practice, and contributing to the assessment and evaluation of these competencies.

      • To provide specialist advice, consultations and training and (where required) clinical supervision to other members of the clinical team for their provision of psychologically based interventions to help improve client’s functioning.

      • To disseminate information regarding psychological aspects of psychosis at national conferences and workshops, through formal presentations and posters. .

      • To gain additional highly specialist experience and skills relevant to clinical and forensic psychology and/or service (as agreed with line manager)

      • To provide teaching to the Universities of Edinburgh and Glasgow Doctorate in Clinical Psychology Training Courses.

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