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Jersey Talking Therapies launched

26 June 2014

Islanders suffering from anxiety, depression, obsessive compulsive disorder, phobias, and post-traumatic stress disorder will soon have access to an enhanced range of psychological therapies.

Jersey Talking Therapies (JTT) will enable adults suffering from common mental health issues, including anyone concerned about excessive drinking, to talk to professional therapists either in their doctor's surgery, at a central hub in St Helier, or over the phone.

From this autumn, anyone seeking help with mental health issues will be given a JTT leaflet which includes the contact details. Once they have called and been given an appointment time, the service will be free.

Removing the stigma associated with mental health

JTT is a joint project between Health and Social Services, GPs and the charity MIND Jersey and is part of the campaign to remove the stigma associated with mental health issues.

The chairman of the Primary Care Body, which represents Jersey GPs, Dr Nigel Minihane, said “Patients can be seen quickly and conveniently in their local surgery, and once referred to JTT they can continue to be seen in a primary care setting, or speak to a therapist by phone. We know that some patients are put off accessing services because of the stigma associated with this and the worry they will be ‘labelled’."

Bespoke therapy

Director of Counselling and Psychotherapy, Dr Tracy Wade, said the principle would be to provide bespoke therapy to those who need it.

“Therapists will see people for an assessment and offer the right type of therapy at the right time by the right people," she said. "We will be offering a range of different types of evidence-based therapeutic interventions recommended by the National Institute of Clinical Excellence, including cognitive behaviour therapy, cognitive analytic therapy and access to counselling.”

Reduced waiting times

Dr Wade said she anticipated JTT playing a significant role in further reducing the length of time patients waited for therapy and followed significant progress by the Psychological Assessment and Therapy Service. Waiting times for initial assessment had been cut to two months; patients requiring one-to-one therapy were now seen within six weeks; and the wait for counselling interventions was four to six weeks.

The launch of Jersey Talking Therapies is part of ongoing work by the Health and Social Services Department, with other partners, to redesign health services for Islanders, as outlined in the 2012 consultation paper ‘Caring for Each Other, Caring for Ourselves.’

The topic of mental health, and ensuring that mental health services are accessible to Islanders, were important themes in the consultation document.


Partnering with MIND Jersey provides additional benefits for Jersey Talking Therapies. MIND's Executive Director, James Le Feuvre said.

“The public can access a course of computerised cognitive behaviour therapy directly via the MIND Jersey website and also book themselves on to a range of different psycho-educational workshops, which are designed to help people to manage their mood and stress levels and improve their assertion skills.”

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