Everybody wants evidence. Evidence gives value. To have ideas without evidence makes the idea unworthy.
The battle between thinking and collecting statistics rages on.
Thinkers think that statistics minimise human experience.
Statisticians ask where is the proof for what the thinkers do?
The Counselling and Therapy industry is a case in point.
The rise of counselling psychology and its Cognitive Behavioural Therapy approach has created a science of counselling evidence. It is evidenced by feedback from the client each session. This information is collected to create a body of evidence. It proves money spent on CBT is worthwhile.
The integrative counsellors who have little scientific evidence for their work have tried to ignore this trend.
On the back of the 2006 Layard Report on depression in the UK the rise of CBT was in place. Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) was born.
IAPT is well funded giving GPs access to a short term CBT service for patients. The creation of Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT ) forced the integrative counsellors to wake up.
Counselling Psychologists train after they have gained a psychology degree. You can be fully trained, and working by the age of 26. Dressed like the marketing department Counselling Psychologists expect to be working in the NHS on a profitable pay scale with benefits.
Integrative counsellors used to start training at the earliest in their late 20s, and as a second career. Most of the UK’s counselling takes place in the voluntary sector. Insecure, underfunded, with low self-esteem.
Counsellors work in ivory towers – wishing to be unquestioned by external market forces.
The question of counsellors and their own therapy comes up. The amount of therapy counselling students has decreased. The apprentice system has gone when you had five years personal counselling before training. Today students decide to have a career in counselling, start training, own therapy and seeing clients at the same time.
Counselling psychologist courses vary in the amount of therapy required. The idea is that CBT can be applied with little thought to the process of the client’s story. It is a like a medical intervention.
The underfunded successful community counselling service with an excellent reputation loses its funding. The integrative counsellors cannot understand why such a valuable service is being lost. Anecdotes are given to evidence continuing funding. Little understanding of external forces and pressures in the Borough exist.
The successful community counselling service receives referrals from IAPT and statutory services. Patients’ mental health does not fall into neat categories so criteria is too strict to include longer term work and bereavement.
But in the end people in the UK have more access to talking about themselves than ever before.
Counselling and Counselling psychology is a success! Counselling Evidence or no Counselling Evidence!
Copyright Adrian Scott North London Counsellor Blog 2013
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Disclaimer: This weblog is the view of the writer and for general information only.
This article is designed to provoke argument and critique.