Can I Get Free Counselling / Therapy?

 

You can get free psychological therapies like cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) on the NHS.

You don’t need a referral from your GP.

You can refer yourself directly to a psychological therapies service.

If you prefer, talk to your GP and they can refer you.

Psychological therapies services are also known as Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) services.

 

What are psychological therapies?

Psychological therapies, sometimes called talking therapies, can help with common mental problems like stress, anxiety and depression.

Which therapy you’re offered depends on which one has been shown to be most helpful for your symptoms.

 

Here are a few examples:

  • CBT – this aims to improve your mental wellbeing by helping you understand how your thoughts can lead to unhelpful emotions and behaviours (see more about CBT)
  • guided self help – a therapist supports you as you work through a self-help course in your own time, either using a workbook or an online course
  • counselling for depression – a type of counselling developed specially for people with depression

 

Psychological therapies are offered in different ways, including:

  • using a self-help workbook with the support of a therapist
  • as an online course
  • over the phone
  • one-to-one
  • in a group

 

Who can have psychological therapies on the NHS?

You need to be registered with a GP to get psychological therapies on the NHS, but you don’t need a referral from your GP.

You can refer yourself directly to a psychological therapies service.

If you need urgent help, call Samaritans free on 116 123 

https://beta.nhs.uk/find-a-psychological-therapies-service/