In 2018 we relaunched the DCoP Practice prize awards. The prizes were aimed at celebrating and disseminating the outstanding work of Counselling Psychologists in practice.
We are proud to celebrate the outstanding work of Counselling psychologists and with your help we hope to continue to develop and recognise the high quality and innovative work of our members in more categories for many years to come.
This year we are very pleased to announce we have awarded two prizes to two outstanding psychologists. Congratulations to Simon Proudlock and Robin Dundas. Here is a summary of their work.
1 - Annual award for innovation - The winner is Simon Proudlock
Simon was nominated for his work with EMDR Therapy for treatment of individuals who are on an acute psychiatric ward or who are under the care of the Crisis Resolution and Home Treatment Team (CRHTT). Using EMDR Therapy in this setting, and taking a trauma focused approach to those presenting in acute services, had not been previously tried anywhere else within the UK or internationally.
Patients were offered immediate access to specialised treatment in a safe and supportive environment with the aim of alleviating their trauma symptoms and facilitating early discharge from services. The project ensured continuity of care, from the ward to the community, which has shown to be a time where patients are at higher risk of suicide.
Overall the initial aims of the project were met and in some cases exceeded. The project successfully treated 70 patients, demonstrating a strong case for the use of EMDR therapy with clients in an acute mental health crisis. The project revealed that therapy with this client group does not increase clinical risk but in fact reduces the desire for suicide, anxiety, depression and PTSD symptoms to a clinically significantly level. In addition, the project demonstrated an increase in clients’ confidence in managing their mental health, resulting in a reduction in reliance on services, with the majority of patients treated being discharged from Mental Health services.
The project provided a considerable cost saving to the NHS by reducing the need for inpatient beds, CRHTT support and further psychological therapy. Of those treated in the project, there was on average a 70% reduction in their use of acute mental health services compared to the 12 months prior to treatment.
This unique approach has been an very important service development. Taking a trauma focused approach seems to be an important intervention to help individuals experiencing a mental health crisis. EMDR Therapy used in this environment has provided a new care pathway for acute mental health services and has helped prevent a revolving door service for some patients. Simon was able to show significant savings for the NHS as well as the huge savings in emotional costs to the client once successfully treated. The project showed that treating individuals who have a trauma picture and high levels of suicidal ideation with EMDR Therapy reduces the desire for suicide and clinical risk.
2 - Annual award for carer and service user involvement - The winner of the award is Dr Robin Dundas
Robin has won the award for his tireless commitment to service user care and involvement. A group of his colleagues nominated him and all described his outstanding and inspiring work. I think their words capture his work and passion. So here in his colleagues words is a summary of Robins outstanding contribution.
Dr Robin Dundas has undoubtedly a genuine a commitment to service user care and involvement which he has tirelessly exercised within a busy NHS gender service, through often challenging and difficult times. His role has spanned individual and group psychotherapy, complex assessments and endorsements for medical interventions, delivering training and supervision, developing new projects and leading on parts of the psychology service, as well as covering service lead responsibilities. He has always not just represented his patients above and beyond what is required, but sought out where inequities may exist in the service and service users’ needs not best being met. As his Line Manager and Head of Department for near a decade of his career, I have no hesitation in nominating him for this award and as can be seen from the testimonials below, neither do his other colleagues. Dr Penny Lenihan, Consultant Psychologist.
Robin is a passionate Counselling Psychologist who holds the values of social justice and person centred care at the heart of all he does. He frequently goes above and beyond for patients, and tirelessly fights for patients’ best interests both within our service, and with other agencies our patients are involved with. Dr Jess Gran, Highly Specialist Psychologist
It seems that this reward is such a small symbol of gratitude when compared to the tremendous contribution you have made not only to the patients you’ve served, but to those other professionals such as myself. Thank you Robin for this gift to us all!! Dr Craig B Rypma, Ph.D., M.B.A. Highly Specialist Psychologist
I think Robin deserves this award for always bringing the voice of the patients to important decisions made by the service. He is an invaluable patient advocate. Dr Charlie Whiteley, Counselling Psychologist.
Robin has been a real inspiration and guide to me in my time working with him. Prioritising patient's needs is not something he does, it is at the heart of all he is as a psychologist, therapist, professional and human. When a client needs an advocate, Robin never questions whether to step in or not. He is always ready to back them, whatever it takes. He has created an extraordinary legacy for us to uphold at the GIC. Dr Kerry Manera, Counselling Psychologist
During the decade or so that I have worked alongside Dr Robin Dundas, he has been a tireless and passionate champion of the rights not only of his own patients but of service users as a whole: he is as generous with his time and effort when initiating and developing client-centred elements of the overall service as he is meticulous in his care of individuals. Collaborating with him on mutual patients has been a pleasure and an inspiration to me and I wholeheartedly support his nomination for this award. Dr Stuart Lorimer, Consultant Psychiatrist