Psychological wellbeing practitioner
Psychological wellbeing practitioners provide high-volume, low-intensity interventions for clients with mild to moderate depression.
This page has information on the role of a psychological wellbeing practitioner. It also includes information on the training and entry requirements for the role.
As a psychological wellbeing practitioner (PWP), you’ll:
- undertake patient-centred interviews
- identify areas where the person wishes to change how they feel
- make an assessment of risk the client poses to themselves and others
- provide assisted self-help, liaise with other agencies and provide information about services
This work may be face to face, telephone or via other media. You’ll work under supervision and refer on clients to a high intensity therapist if required. You’ll work with adults, children and young people from many different backgrounds.
Where will I work?
You’ll work within an Improving Access to Psychological Therapy (IAPT) service which may be within a clinical commissioning group, specialist mental health trust or in the third or private sector. You’ll work closely with other healthcare professionals, such as high intensity therapists, employment advisers and other therapists and support staff.
Psychological wellbeing practitioner training is commissioned by the NHS and delivered by local universities. It consists of one day per week academic work and four days supervised practice.
You need to apply for a post as a trainee PWP in order to access the training. See the section on 'Job market and vacancies' below.
Entry requirements and experience needed
Training places are open to either:
- graduates or those who can demonstrate that they can meet the academic requirements of the post graduate level qualification
- people from the local community, with a wide range of life experience who will be trained to a graduate level
Experience of working with people with mental health problems is essential.
- Pay and conditions Expand / Collapse
Most jobs in the NHS are covered by the Agenda for Change (AfC) pay scales. This pay system covers all staff except doctors, dentists and the most senior managers. Trainee PWPs are appointed at band 4 and will usually work standard hours of 37.5 per week. Once qualified as a PWP, you would usually progress to a band 5 position. Terms and conditions can vary for employers outside of the NHS.
- Where the role can lead Expand / Collapse
As a qualified and experienced PWP you can apply for more senior posts at band 6, with additional management and specialist responsibilities.
- Job market and vacancies Expand / Collapse
Applications for trainee PWP posts need to be made to an organisation providing Improving Access to Psychological Therapy (IAPT) services. IAPT services are provided directly by NHS organisations in some parts of the country and in others, the NHS commissions third sector to provide them.
Selection is carried out jointly between service and academic course providers. If successful, both a job and a training place are offered. Over 500 training places are available every year.
Trainee vacancies can be found on the NHS Jobs website or may be advertised locally within newspapers or local job sites. Vacancies may also be advertised on charity websites - such as Mind, Rethink and Turning Point.
If you're applying for a role either directly in the NHS or in an organisation that provides NHS services, you'll be asked to show how you think the NHS values apply in your everyday work.
Find out more about NHS values.
- Further information Expand / Collapse
- Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (for general information about IAPT, but not for job vacancies)
- British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP)
- Health Education England - Expanding the children and young people's mental health workforce