Re: FOI Request - Policy on Employing Unaccredited Counsellors and Psychotherapists:
Thomas Stephens made this Freedom of Information request to South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust
This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.
I work for the office of Diana Johnson MP. I am writing on her behalf to make a Freedom of Information request on the Trust's policy concerning the employment of unaccredited counsellors and psychotherapists.
I understand from an FOI Request to one CCG, NHS Barnsley CCG, that you are commissioned by them. I would like information on the accreditation requirements of the counsellors and psychotherapists employed by the Trust for this service, as well as any other such services you are commissioned by any other CCGs to provide. Please see below for the questions she would like addressing.
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I am writing to make a request under the Freedom of Information Act. This request follows on from a previous FOI request I sent, dated 28th January 2014, to all CCGs in England. It concerned the CCG’s commissioning of counselling and psychotherapy services from providers who employ practitioners who are not all accredited members of bodies which are on the Accredited Voluntary Register (AVR).
This request (which is attached to this letter) received a variety of responses from CCGs. Crucially, some CCGs told me that they only commission counselling and psychotherapy from their local NHS Trust, and advised I direct this FOI request to the Trusts for information on the accreditation of all the counsellors and psychotherapists they employ.
Pursuant to this, I am contacting you because some CCGs told me that they commission this Trust to provide counselling and psychotherapy services.
In making this follow-up request, I am interested in knowing not merely whether the CCG and Trust has a policy on the commissioning/employment of non-AVR registered counsellors or psychotherapists or not – which was the main issue of my previous FOI request – but whether the Trust can provide assurance that none of the counsellors and psychotherapists you employ are not accredited with organisations on the AVR.
I would thus like information on the following:
(1) Is the Trust commissioned by any CCGs to provide counselling and psychotherapy services? If so, please state which. Is the Trust the sole Provider of counselling and psychotherapy for any of these Trusts?
(2) If so, does the commissioning contract negotiated with the CCGs specify that all counsellors and psychotherapists employed by the provider must be accredited members of an appropriate or relevant professional body; or has the CCG sought assurance on this through other means? If so, could you list the bodies which the Trust deems appropriate? Are any of the bodies the CCG deems appropriate or relevant not on the Accredited Voluntary Register (AVR)?
(3) What is the Trust’s policy on the employment of counsellors and psychotherapists who are not accredited with professional bodies on the Accredited Voluntary Register?
(4) Can the Trust provide assurance that none of the practitioners you employ are not accredited with professional bodies which are on the AVR?
Office of Diana Johnson.
MP for Kingston upon Hull North and Shadow Crime & Security Minister.
Dear Mr Stephens
Thank you for your recent freedom of information request. Please see the attached letter for your files
FAO Thomas Stephens
Ref: FOI 802/14
Please find the Trust's response letter attached.
Customer Services Officer
South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, Customer Services, Fieldhead Hospital, Block 10, Ouchthorpe Lane, Wakefield, WF1 3SP
Direct Dial: 01924 328657
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