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  5. Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner Apprenticeship

Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner Apprenticeship

Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner

Individuals suffering from common mental health concerns such as mild to moderate depression, anxiety, and bad mood are examined and helped by psychological wellness practitioners.

As a psychological wellness practitioner (PWP), you will provide your patients with a choice of low-intensity, cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT)-based treatments to help them manage their recovery.

You’ll work with many people, with each client session lasting around 20 to 30 minutes. A fully trained PWP may expect to help more than 250 patients annually.

Managing referrals and sending clients to other agencies are everyday duties. You’ll need to work closely with other healthcare experts such as high-intensity therapists, employment counsellors, other therapists, and support employees.

Responsibilities

Throughout your apprenticeship, you may help:

  • conduct interviews to assess and support the patient’s needs
  • design and run group therapy sessions
  • signpost patients to other helpful services
  • keep accurate and up to date patient care records
  • support and train other healthcare professionals
  • develop and set up new mental health support services.

Salary

  • Apprentice PWPs start at £23,949 (Band 4) of the NHS Agenda for change (AfC) pay rates.
  • After qualification, salaries within the NHS progress to Band 5. You’re likely to start on £27,055 and progress up one pay point annually until you reach £32,934 (the top of the scale).
  • Senior PWPs can earn salaries at Bands 6, 7 and 8a. Salaries at this level can range from £33,706 (bottom of Band 6) to £54,619 (top of Band 8a).

Working hours

You can expect to work a standard 37 to 39 hours per week. There are some opportunities for part-time work.

Working environment

You could work at a health centre, at a client’s home or at a GP practice.

Your working environment may be emotionally demanding.

Qualifications

Qualifications you can achieve as an apprentice psychological wellbeing practitioner include:

  • Level 6 Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner – Entry requirements for this level include 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship. And a degree in a relevant subject for a degree apprenticeship.

This qualification will take 12 months to complete.

Skills

On a psychological wellbeing practitioner apprenticeship, you’ll learn:

  • knowledge of psychology
  • counselling skills including active listening and a non-judgemental approach
  • to be flexible and open to change
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • the ability to work well with others
  • to enjoy working with other people
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • customer service skills
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently.

Employers

You could work in a variety of settings, including:

  • GP surgeries
  • health centres
  • psychological treatment centres.

Professional development

As a new PWP, you will be urged to take courses to broaden your knowledge and skills. This post-qualification training might take the shape of one-week short courses or longer courses leading to a diploma or Master’s degree.

You will be responsible for choosing your continuing professional development (CPD) needs, which may include several in-service and external training alternatives. You may also seek further training in themes covered in your first course to specialise in a particular area, such as working with clients with sleep issues, insomnia, or generalised anxiety disorder (GAD).

With time, you may get training in supervisory, management, and leadership skills, allowing you to supervise the work of other PWPs. You might also train to work with specific groups of clients, such as those with learning disabilities, veterans, or persons with medically unexplained symptoms, or in a specialised setting, such as a prison. In any case, competency outside of the core PWP work and CPD training is required.

CPD, on the other hand, is not limited to training courses and will encourage you to engage in other activities that add to your professional development, such as observing others, researching literature, being mentored, or working on special projects.

Career prospects

Because this is a new job function, promotion chances as a PWP were initially limited. The work, however, is evolving, and there are now more opportunities for promotion into senior, management, and leadership roles.

Career prospects are often plentiful, and there is a clear route to advancement within the NHS. First, however, you must show that you have the requisite abilities, experience, and competence to advance through the pay bands.

Working in prenatal mental health or with particular patient groups such as elderly people, those with long-term health issues such as diabetes, or black and ethnic minority communities are further alternatives for specialisation.

Working in occupational health services, correctional facilities, or providing therapy at universities and colleges are all potential career options.

Some trained PWPs continue their education by studying psychological therapies such as high-intensity CBT, counselling, or other subjects such as clinical psychology. PWPs may apply for high-intensity treatment training after two years of continuous employment as PWP.

Updated on January 1, 2023

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