Half of UK psychotherapists reject patients after cases rise 10%, poll shows

Half of UK psychotherapists reject patients after cases rise 10%, poll shows – as three-quarters see patient’s mental health decline

  • Half of UK psychotherapists have stopped seeing new patients, study shows
  • Three-quarters of therapists said they saw a decline in patients’ mental health
  • 90% of patients’ exposed financial concerns were the cause of ill health

According to research, half of UK psychotherapists have closed their doctor’s offices to new patients due to an unprecedented increase in demand.

A poll of 3,000 mental health professionals by the British Association for Counseling and Psychotherapy (BACP) also found that the number of overworked clinicians has increased by ten percent compared to last year.

Three-quarters of therapists surveyed said they had seen a decline in patients’ mental health since this time last year.

Nearly 90 percent cited patient concerns about finances as a major cause of this. Fears related to the Covid pandemic and the war in Ukraine are also factors.

Half UK psychotherapists have closed their doctor’s office doors to new patients amid unprecedented demand surge, study shows (file photo)

“People may have expected mental health to improve this year as we get out of the Covid pandemic,” said Fiona Ballantine Dykes, deputy director of the BACP.

“But as therapists we see the profound impact that social, economic and global problems have on the well-being of the population.”

About two million Britons receive regular psychological therapy, according to the Mental Health Foundation. Of this, 1.6 million receive aid from the NHS.

Studies show that the treatment, in which patients talk about their problems with a trained mental health professional, can be very effective for relieving symptoms of anxiety, depression and other mental health problems.

Official guidelines from NICE recommend psychological therapy alongside antidepressants as the standard treatment for most mental health problems.

About two million Britons receive regular psychological therapy, according to the Mental Health Foundation.  Of these, 1.6 million will receive aid on the NHS (file photo)

About two million Britons receive regular psychological therapy, according to the Mental Health Foundation. Of these, 1.6 million will receive aid on the NHS (file photo)

The coronavirus pandemic increased the number of patients requiring support, with one in four therapists seeing an increase in eating disorders and a fifth an increase in substance abuse, according to the BACP.

Last year, the number of referrals for NHS mental health treatment in England hit record highs.

Between January and December 2021, according to NHS digital data, there were 3.3 million referrals to adult services and just over a million referrals from young people under the age of 18.

Overall, the number of mental health appointments increased by just under 15 percent between 2019 and 2021.

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