What we do

Welcome to Clinical Health Psychology, Bradford. We hope that you will find out more about the services we offer and how to access them.

Clinical Health Psychology provides specialist services to adults and children who have a range of physical and psychological needs. We are based at St Luke’s Hospital, Bradford.

Some of our services offer talking therapy for people with a physical health condition, and others assessments of cognitive (thinking or memory) skills and behavioural needs. We provide three main services to people accessing healthcare in the Bradford district:

  • Adult therapies
  • Neuropsychology
  • Therapies for children

Clinical and health psychologists, counsellors and specialist social workers are trained to understand the effects of having a health condition on emotional wellbeing, and can help people understand and approach the challenges they are facing through talking.

Our psychologists, counsellors and specialist social workers are an integral part of our healthcare teams, and support the psychological care of patients alongside their medical needs. You’ll find more information about the services we offer, and how to access them, below.

Our mission

Developing understanding, inspiring hope, supporting change.

The Clinical Health Psychology Service is committed to improving the psychological care of people in Bradford who have a physical health condition and are accessing medical care within Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. Please contact the department if you would like to find out more about the services we offer or discuss making a referral.

Adult services

We are a specialist service providing therapy support to help people deal with the emotional impact of their health condition and/or its treatment.

The diagnosis and treatment of a health condition often brings a number of challenges and life changes that are naturally difficult to deal with and sometimes difficult thoughts and feelings can impact on day-to-day life, mood and relationships in a way that feels unmanageable. When this happens, some people find it helpful to speak to a professional who has an understanding of the psychological effects of a wide range of health conditions in a confidential setting.

Common concerns people might have include:

  • Adjusting to illness, injury or medication
  • Feeling low, upset or angry after a diagnosis
  • Fears about the future
  • Worry or anxiety
  • Dealing with stress
  • Low mood or depression
  • Fears about treatment such as taking medication or procedures
  • Dealing with the impact of health conditions on relationships
  • Sexual intimacy
  • Grief and loss
  • Decisions about treatment

Specialties in the Adult Psychology Service

  • Bariatric surgery
  • Cardiology and heart failure
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
  • Oncology (Cancer)
  • Chronic pain
  • Palliative care
  • Renal (Kidney)
  • Diabetes
  • HIV
  • Psychosexual therapy
  • Mindfulness

We offer both individual and group sessions, drawing on a range of psychological approaches. We can also help direct people to other services if their concerns are not directly related to their health condition. For example, where there are longstanding relationship difficulties, or where people are struggling to manage issues related to drug/alcohol use or psychosis.

We also offer consultations as part of a multi-disciplinary approach for patients whose needs would not be best met through direct, one-to-one therapy. This means we can help the wider healthcare team understand an individual’s psychological needs and how these can best be supported by the team.

Other departments

Interested in joining our team?

Our talented and compassionate staff help care for a diverse population, making Bradford a special place to work. Choosing the right people is key to our success. If you think you’ve got what it takes to join us, please email careers@bthft.nhs.uk to discover more about our latest opportunities.

Clinical Health Psychology and coronavirus

Please be aware that our services are being impacted by coronavirus and may be on hold or running differently at this time. You can contact us on 01274 365176 from 8am-4pm if you need to discuss this. See below for resources to support wellbeing during coronavirus.

Who we are

 
Mark Pitkethly Consultant Clinical Psychologist
Robert Whittaker Consultant Clinical Psychologist
Merry Hill Consultant Clinical Psychologist
Katherine Wright Clinical Psychologist
Kate Ryder Clinical Psychologist
Jo Charsley Clinical Psychologist
Sarah Faithorn Clinical Psychologist
Sarah Taylor Clinical Psychologist
Emma Bishop Clinical Psychologist
Jaime Wood Clinical Psychologist
Fiona Purdie Health Psychologist
Aneesa Shariff Clinical Psychologist
Karen Midgley Counsellor
Kate Holt Psychotherapist
Catherine Higgins Counsellor and Psychosexual Therapist
Lucy Smith Counsellor
Nicky Ison Counsellor
Hannah Moulson Assistant Psychologist
Eleftheria Panteliou Assistant Psychologist

Contact details

If you would like any further information about Clinical Health Psychology please contact the department between 8am and 5pm, Monday – Friday.

Please leave a message on our answerphone if you are calling outside these times.

Address
Top floor, Extension Block
St Luke’s Hospital
Little Horton Lane
Bradford
BD5 ONA

Patient enquiries
Telephone: 01274 365176
Fax: 01274 365177

We use the BT text relay service for patients who are deaf or hearing impaired. To contact us ring 18001 01274 365176.

Accessibility

Please see the AccessAble pages on the Psychology department at St Luke’s Hospital.

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Patient information leaflets

Supporting our wellbeing during coronavirus

The coronavirus pandemic is bringing uncertainty and great worry into many of our lives. We are being asked to stay at home and may find ourselves feeling isolated or anxious. We might be worried about ourselves or family members, especially if they are elderly or have underlying health conditions. 

Often there are small steps that we can take to look after our wellbeing.  Here are some important yet simple steps we can consider:

  • Acknowledge our thoughts and feelings, without judging them
  • Be kind to ourselves when things are tough, try to offer the same kindness we would with a dear friend
  • Take a pause when we feel overwhelmed, and ask ourselves what we need to take care
  • Focus on the things that we can control, including what we can do support ourselves and others
  • Keep or create new routines
  • Exercise or move our bodies in whatever way if possible for us, following the guidance on social distancing or isolation
  • Stay connected to people – reach out and keep in touch with people you are connected with, for example using phone or video
  • Limit how often you read the media coverage
  • Avoid coping strategies that might have unhelpful consequences, such as drinking, drugs or smoking

It is important for you to find a way that works best for you, and there are many different kinds of support and organisations that you might find helpful.  Below is a collection of information and resources that can help us to think about how we can support our emotional wellbeing during this time.  There are also links to other useful websites and support services. We may continue to update these pages as we find more information.

Specific wellbeing support for inpatients during coronavirus

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30 activities - Coping calendar

Mindfulness for Health and Wellbeing

Learning mindfulness and compassion can help with feelings of anxiety, depression and self-judgements that often arise with – or are complicated by – health conditions.

Mindfulness for Health and Wellbeing is an eight-week course that can help you cope with the stress of living with pain or other health conditions.

Mindfulness involves learning to be aware of what you are experiencing in a friendly and non-judgmental way. This helps us to see more clearly what we need and how to respond skilfully rather than in a reactive or habitual way.

“I feel better in myself. Calmer. Less stressed. More in control. Less emotional tension. Feeling more peaceful and happy with life.”

“It has helped greatly in keeping myself calmer and to cope better with situations.”

For more information, please visit our Mindfulness for Health and Wellbeing pages.

FAQs

How can I access the service?
Patients are usually referred by their GP or another member of their healthcare team such as a consultant, doctor, specialist nurse, physiotherapist or dietician. Please contact us on 01274 365176  if you would like to find out more or discuss making a referral.

How long would I need to see the clinician for?
The number of sessions people need varies. This will be discussed and decided with you at your first appointment, but may change during therapy. It is very important that you attend the planned sessions with your psychologist/counsellor in order for them to be as effective as possible. If you need to cancel your appointment please contact the department as soon as possible using the contact details provided on your appointment letter.

Is there a waiting time for appointments?
We will try to see you as soon as possible however there may be a wait for an appointment. If there is a wait we will let you know how long this is likely to be.

Where will I be seen?
Outpatient appointments are mainly held in the Horton Wing at St Luke’s Hospital in Bradford.  Some clinics are also run at Bradford Royal Infirmary and in the community such as at GP surgeries. If you are in hospital the psychologist or counsellor may arrange to see you on the ward, in a private room where possible.

What about confidentiality?
Confidentiality is an important part of working with a psychologist or counsellor. For more information click here.

Can I bring someone with me to the appointment?
We understand that attending new appointments can cause people to feel nervous or anxious and therefore we often allow people to bring someone with them. Please contact the department if you wish to discuss this further. After the initial appointments you may be encouraged to see your psychologist or counsellor alone in order for sessions to be most effective.

Can you provide an interpreter?
If English is not your first language we are able to provide an interpreter for sessions in order to allow you and the therapist to communicate more effectively.  Our interpreters are employed by Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and work within the same confidentiality boundaries as us. Please let us know if you require this support when you are referred.

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