Youth intensive psychological practitioner
Youth intensive psychological practitioners provide psychological assessment and psychologically informed interventions support for young people (13–17 years old) with severe mental health problems.
Based in inpatient and intensive home treatment services, you’ll have an important role in supporting young people towards recovery. You’ll help them to lead fulfilling lives by ensuring they can access the support they need. This is a new role currently being piloted across England.
Life as a youth intensive psychological practitioner
You’ll spend much of your time working with other health and care professionals within your team.
Under supervision, you’ll use assessment, engagement and formulation skills under supervision to make a ‘map’ of current difficulties and what keeps them going. In this way, you’ll support the young person with psychologically-informed, evidence-based interventions and active risk management, as well as strategies for daily living and self-care.
Once qualified, you’ll spend at least 20 hours a week seeing patients and their parents and carers, either in an inpatient setting, clinic, in their own homes or via video link or telephone.
You’ll also develop relationships across the children and young people’s mental health and care system to help co-ordinate the most appropriate care for your patients.
How much can I earn?
There are nine pay bands. As a trainee youth intensive psychological practitioner, you’ll be paid at band 4. After qualifying, you’ll be paid at band 5, with the opportunity to progress with experience.
Terms and conditions can vary if you are employed outside the NHS.
How about the benefits?
- be part of an exciting new role established to help transform children and young people's mental health services
- make a difference
- work flexible and part-time hours
If you’re employed by the NHS, you’ll also have good holiday entitlement and access to:
- fully funded training plus a salary while you train and a job in the service when you qualify
- an excellent pension scheme
- NHS discounts in shops and restaurants
- a desire to work closely with children, young people, their families and carers at some of the most difficult points in their lives
- the ability to recognise the expression of emotion in others and how it manifests in their behaviour
- a capacity for study and continued learning
- excellent interpersonal skills and the ability to build trusting and productive relationships with a wide range of people in a variety of situations
- the ability to work well in a multidisciplinary team
- a good understanding of mental health issues
- strong written and verbal communication skills, tailored to a variety of audiences
- the ability to work independently where appropriate and use initiative to think quickly, often in challenging situations and with competing priorities
- the resilience and self-awareness to look after your own mental wellbeing at the same time as supporting others with theirs.
You'll also need to be able to demonstrate the values of the NHS Constitution.
To apply for training, you’ll need either:
- an accredited psychology degree at a minimum level of 2:2, which is recognised by the British Psychological Society (BPS) as enabling eligibility for Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership or
- to have completed another qualifying course that confers Graduate Basis Chartered Membership of the BPS
See 'Getting started' on the BPS website for more details.
For a place on the programme, you’ll need to apply for a position as a trainee youth intensive psychological practitioner.
- direct experience of people who use mental health and care services in a personal, voluntary or paid capacity (for example as someone with lived experience or as a carer)
- demonstrable interpersonal skills and values consistent with providing hopeful, person-centred care
- commitment to working with young people with complex mental health needs and their families or carers
- demonstrable ability to study at degree level or above
- good communication and interpersonal skills
- motivation and commitment to undertake and complete the course
How to become a youth intensive psychological practitioner
While training, you’ll typically spend one day a week studying at university (45 days in total) with almost all of this being remote learning. You'll spend the remaining four days a week working in or undertaking specific training tasks in your placement setting. You'll spend time in both an inpatient and intensive home treatment team as part of your placements.
Where a career as a youth intensive psychological practitioner can take you
It’s important to note that a two-year psychological professions funding rule policy was implemented on 1 April 2022. This means that if you start NHS-funded psychological professions training from April 2022, you won’t be eligible for NHS funding for further psychological profession training for two years from the expected completion date of your first training, where it would lead to a change in your job role.
Visit the funding for psychological professions training programmes web page for more information about NHS funding.
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