Free and Reduced Cost Services

**PLEASE READ CAREFULLY** - THE FREE/REDUCED COST SERVICE IS AIMED AT PROVIDING THERAPY TO INDIVIDUALS ON LOW OR NO INCOME WHO ARE NOT OTHERWISE ABLE TO ACCESS SERVICES AND HAVE NOT PREVIOUSLY RECEIVED SERVICES. IF YOU HAVE PREVIOUSLY RECEIVED, OR BEEN OFFERED SERVICES FROM THE NHS OR OTHER PROVIDERS YOU WILL NOT QUALIFY FOR THE FREE/REDUCED FEE SERVICE. THE SERVICE IS AIMED AT PEOPLE LIVING ON OR BELOW STATE BENEFIT LEVELS. IF YOU ARE WORKING OR IN A HOUSEHOLD WHERE THE MAIN BREADWINNER IS WORKING, YOU ARE UNLIKELY TO QUALIFY FOR FREE OR REDUCED FEE SERVICES.


PLEASE NOTE THAT DUE TO DEMAND THERE IS CURRENTLY A WAITING LIST FOR APPLICATIONS FOR REDUCED FEE THERAPY


Pro Bono (free of charge, or reduced cost) Policy

We operate a policy for taking on pro bono Therapy/ Consultation work.

The Heaton Practice has a long history of supporting good causes, through charitable donations, providing assistance "in kind" and by offering to undertake pro bono Therapy work.  In an ideal world we would be able to undertake every pro bono (free of charge, or reduced cost) piece of Therapy work that is presented to us.

Unfortunately, given a finite amount of resources available, we need to be selective in the work that we can do.  The policy below is designed to give everyone a common understanding of the limits of what we can consider and to outline the procedure for seeking assistance.

Policy

The Heaton Practice is willing, on a limited basis, to consider requests to work cooperatively with our clients and/or Voluntary organisations/agencies and charities, by offering Therapy/ Therapeutic Consultation/ Clinical Supervision advice at reduced cost, or free of charge.

We do not supply pro bono assistance to profit making organisations, or to organisations whose primary source of income is via Statutory, Local or Central Government funding.  The activities of the organisation must not exclude any section of society and pro bono help is usually offered only where the organisation/ individual would not realistically be expected to afford the advice/ support that they require, or to be able to obtain it via existing services (i.e. the NHS). Nor will free/reduced fee services be offered to individuals who have previously received, or been offered psychological therapies via existing services.

 

Due to the fact that The Heaton Practice is a small business, Reduced Fee Therapy spaces are limited. Reduced Fee Therapy will be offered only when spaces are available.  Please be aware that there is usually a waiting list for free and reduced fee therapy.

This service is offered as an attempt to provide therapy to those who would otherwise struggle to access therapeutic services. For this reason, the service is based on an assessment of income, resources and circumstances.

Reduced fee therapy will be offered for a maximum of 3 months completely free or 6 months at half fee (this is for guidance purposes only, each case will be assessed on individual need and may be offered less, or in exceptional circumstances, more time than this.). The contract is for the defined period of time, rather than number of sessions attended.

 Contracts for other free or reduced fee work, for example organisational consultation will be on a case by case basis and may be anything form a one off meeting to a longer contract for regular support.

*Please note that completely free work is usually only offered in exceptional circumstances.

Procedure

If you wish to be assessed for Pro Bone services, please make this clear when you contact us making clear your request for assessment for reduced fee services so that we can provide the necessary information and assessment forms.

If you would like more information about Pro Bono work, whether it be individual therapy or organisational consultation etc, please contact us, explaining the nature of the service you are interested in and your current circumstances.


Other affordable options for people on low incomes

Ongoing talking therapy – counselling and psychotherapy – may feel like a luxury and out of reach, especially for people on low incomes. Ongoing psychological therapies are available, albeit on a limited basis through the NHS. There are, however, a number of other ways you might be able to find affordable therapy if you are prepared to hunt around and perhaps be on a waiting list for a while.

Your GP and the NHS

It may be possible to get counselling and psychotherapy through your GP.

Your GP may have counsellors working within your GP practice. They can refer you on to a variety of psychological therapies services. This can work really well for some people.  For others, a first therapy through the NHS can feel too short or lacking the depth required. There will usually be a waiting list and the therapy will usually be short-term and mainly Cognitive Behavioural.

Organisations with low-fee clinics

It is possible to get low cost counselling and psychotherapy from £5 per session from organisations who train or accredit practitioners and run a low-fee clinic. These clinics will usually combine a commitment to offering therapy to people on low incomes or benefits with offering their students experience as part of their training. Though this often means seeing a student counsellor or psychotherapist, their work with you will be supervised by qualified and experienced practitioners.

If you are interested in long-term, intensive psychotherapy, you might consider applying to an organisation offering low cost therapy working with a trainee practitioner. This will usually involve a commitment to a minimum period of work, and possibly to more than one session a week. The fee is usually relatively low. It is also worth asking around about the various counselling and psychotherapy training courses in your area as these may have information about the availability of low cost therapy with trainees.

Some local free of charge counselling services

http://www.talkinghelpsnewcastle.org/

http://www.necounselling.org.uk/counselling-support/

http://www.tynesidercc.org.uk/

http://www.crusebereavementcare.org.uk/

http://www.marriagecare.org.uk/search/centres

http://www.atime2talk.co.uk/?page_id=156

 

 


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