Medical Psychology

The Medical Psychology Department is a service for adults who are having difficulties with managing the impact of medical/physical health problems on their psychological well-being, or are finding that their mental health is having a direct impact on their physical health.

We assess and treat psychological distress that is arising from or contributing to medical conditions and procedures. Problems that may respond to psychological intervention include psychological distress that is interfering with treatment (e.g. needle phobia) or recovery (e.g. depression following a heart attack) and poor compliance to medical treatment (e.g. insulin adherence in diabetes).  We also work with patients who are struggling to come to terms with their diagnosis or treatment, and those needing help in managing their symptoms (e.g. pain management).

Referral criteria

This is guidance for healthcare professionals who wish to refer patients to the Department of Medical Psychology

Referrals can only be accepted from UHL Consultants (or a member of their team). Patient self-referrals and referrals from GPs are not accepted.

Inclusion Criteria

  • Over 16 years old
  • Under UHL Consultant
  • Lives in Leicestershire and Rutland (or GP within area). This differs for some individual specialisms
  • The patient must be experiencing psychological difficulties that arise from or are contributing to their physical health condition
  • Those who are motivated and ready to change and willing to engage in a psychological approach to managing their difficulties
  • Patient has consented to the referral
  • Patient would benefit from learning appropriate strategies to help them cope with their physical health condition and improve their quality of life

How to refer?

Referrals should be sent via letter to Medical Psychology, Hadley House, LGH. All referrals should contain the following information:

  • Service user identification details.
  • NHS number.
  • Ethnic origin and language. Please state whether an interpreter will be required.
  • Reasons for referral and why now.
  • A copy of the most recent clinic letter.

It is also helpful if the referrals contain the following information, if known:

  • Any significant life events
  • Working diagnosis and treatments already tried
  • Previous psychiatric history
  • Relevant personal and family history
  • Co-existing medical conditions including medication
  • History of risk to self and others
  • Existing support networks already in place

Criteria exclusion

• The patient has long standing history of mental health issues (self harm, psychosis, severe depression, personality disorder) which continue to be problematic and are the priority at the moment. • If psychiatric treatment is indicated • Patient is receiving ongoing psychological therapy from another service (once this is completed referral to Medical Psychology may be beneficial) • If a patient has been seen in our service less than 18 months previously • The patient’s current psychological distress is not directly linked to their physical health condition. • Current or recent alcohol/drug misuse which is the priority for the patient and/or the patient is engaged in an intervention regarding this. • Patient is presenting with active suicidal thoughts and/or plans and would be unable to keep themselves safe such that they require risk monitoring and/or medication reviews with a consultant psychiatrist. • The patient is experiencing socio-economic problems that overshadow the physical health issues and would prevent them from focussing on therapy related to their physical health issues and associated impact of the health condition.

How to access this service

Referrals can only be accepted from University Hospitals of Leicester (UHL) Consultants (or a member of their team). Patient self-referrals and GP referrals are not accepted.

What conditions do you cover

We assess and treat psychological distress that is arising from or contributing to medical conditions and procedures. Problems that may respond to psychological intervention include psychological distress that is interfering with treatment (e.g. needle phobia) or recovery (e.g. depression following a heart attack) and poor compliance to medical treatment (e.g. insulin adherence in diabetes).  We also work with patients who are struggling to come to terms with their diagnosis or treatment, and those needing help in managing their symptoms (e.g. pain management).

Contact info

0116 295 4555

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