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Clinical Psychologists

#1
Hi there, just a query out of curiosity. Is it true that those appplying to join up as a clinical psychologist in the army don't need a degree? Thats a bit strange isn't it? My dad's a civvy clinical psychologist and was at uni until he was 28(Daft nonce in my opinion but there you go!).
 

TomB

Old-Salt
#4
I`m confused?

Is it just me?

Do I need a psychologist?

In space can anyone hear you squeem & squeem?

I am near the end of a very long late shift & my mind is numb!
 
#6
civvy clinical psychologists, bunch of c*nts, how can they assess someone who's been in the Army unless they've been in themselves. Oh and they are a bunch of c*nts. W*nkers.
 
#8
boelynbulldog said:
Curious as to why you need to have served to be able to treat a serviceman/woman?
Service life is very different to civvy street and applying civvie "standards" to someone who's been in along time isn't right IMO. Have I mentioned it, they're c*nts.
 
#9
I would say, IMHO, that most cancer surgeons, brain surgeons and the like have not had to face the diseases that they are trained to treat themselves. As a copper I have never been raped but I am trained in how to deal with rape victims and I have done so with some good feedback. NASA pilots before they launch into space have never been there before and yet have conducted many successful space missions. So either you are a nutter and have had a problem after being refused leave of Broadmoor etc or you are talking bollox Mr Armourer.

:roll:
 
#10
boelynbulldog said:
Curious as to why you need to have served to be able to treat a serviceman/woman?
Certainly the services recruit from the rest of society.

What is not implicit, is that the rest of society are able to relate to some of the challenges and traumas that servicemen have had to come to terms with.

I have seen numersous professional civilian practitioners rendered spechless when they have been briefed on:

a. The responsibilities and duties of servicemen.

b. The type and scale of psycholigical trauma servicemen have been confronted with. ( Rwanda, the Krajnas etc , etc)

For example, we are still finding escape-aids hidden on our site, by a serviceman, who was discharged 10 years ago, but had emerged from a coma, thinking he was a PoW in captivity.

The civilian staff are completely dumbfounded having no concept of life in captivity, never mind the duties of a PoW

One size does not fit all, unless boelynbulldog, you are an accountant perchance?

For once, I might venture that the armourer and I are coming at this from the same direction, and some of the rest of you are a shade out of step?

XXX
 
#11
Besides most Trick Cyclists I have met are as mad as a fish so how does the old catch phrase go, 'It takes a thief to catch a thief' 8O 8O 8O 8O

All my personalities agree. The vote is carried by all 4 of us. Wibble!

:D
 
#13
Having seen the damage some civvie psychologists do to service personnel, due to not understanding the military, I feel that in psych services there is a need for those who attempt to treat to have served. You may not need to be a rapist or burglar to be a police officer but psych is a totally different thing (I am deliberately excluding forensic psych patients in my reply as you do not have to be a criminal to assist them, in fact they need a different kind of assistance entirely).

The biggest issue is the personnel themselves do not trust civvies as they feel "they ain't been there they don't understand what I went through". Having serving psychs available for personnel to see easily and quickly is something I have been agitating for a long time, to no avail. Until they change that the closest thing will continue to be the chaplains that attach to units and go out with them in theatre.
 
#15
Hi all, long time reader, first time poster. Hope people don't mind if I
make a few observations on this thread.

To deal with the original post, clinical psychologists need training to
Masters Degree level to be professionally recognised and registered in the UK. There is no such thing as a non-degree psychologist (although I have met a few people in my time who think they are...).

The regular army is not recruiting uniformed pschologists at present.
As far as I am aware, there are no plans to do so. The TA, on the other
hand, is. I believe they are to be RAMC cap badged. There has only been
one recruited so far. He's in 256 (London) FH.

On the topic of civvy psychologists (and by implication civvy doctors and MH nurses) working with service personnel, I offer the following observations for consideration-

1) Most civvy psychologists work for the MOD for long periods of time.
By the nature of their work with service patients and alongside service
health care staff, they gain a far better insight into military life
than most other MOD civil servants, let alone the general public. I am
also aware that most of them make the effort to get out on exercise or
even visit Operational Theatres to see what happens in units stationed
on their patch.

2) A common misconception is that military DCMHs (Departments of Community Mental Health) spend all their time dealing with psychological trauma related to Ops and war fighting. In fact, it is a very small proportion
of casework. A small amount of time is taken up with the type of stuff the NHS sees e.g. schizophrenia, manic-depression, etc. The bulk of the work however is more- how shall I put this- 'soap opera' e.g. "my wife is going to leave me", "my wife wont leave me", "I've fallen in love with my wife's new boyfriend", "my corporal is being nasty to me", "the man in the careers office said I could leave whenever I wanted" and so on. In summary it's about the trials of life, and whether you wear a uniform or not is probably immaterial in most cases.

3) Multidisciplinary team working is really big nowadays. It's unlikely that
a service person would see a psychologist directly as a fresh case. A
psychiatrist and CPN would also be involved. There's a good chance that
at least one of them would be uniformed. Besides which, if a punter really
doesn't want to deal with civvies in that situation, they can ask to change
clinicians. It happens occasionally, but usually it's about personality clashes
rather than the colour of the clothes people turn up to work in.

4) The acid test is probably in the reaction of the punters. Mental health
work isn't easy. You have to deal with distressed and distressing people. In addition, the occupational setting of military psychiatry means that a lot
of disgruntled people get seen. They often take out their frustration with
the armed forces or life in general on the obvious and available targets i.e
the MH staff. Overall however, I'd say that most punters are happy with the
service they get from uniformed AND civilian DCMH staff.

I'd be interested to hear if others have any views on these issues.
BTW- I'm not a psychologist!
Regards
Neuroleptic
 
#16
netleynirse said:
One size does not fit all, unless boelynbulldog, you are an accountant perchance?
I agree completely with the above!

One size does not fit all & that means that some civvy psychologists will be able to treat some squaddies very successfully without ever having to dig a trench themselves.

There may be situations where an insight to a persons experiences would be very useful but given the number of Forces Psychologists who will have experienced personally all the potential horrors of Forces life 1st hand (probably around 0 at the last count) then it looks as if we`ll have to make do with what is available.


To say that a civvy cant treat a squaddie is in my humble professional opinion b`ollocks.


p.s. Obviously no evidence to back this up but I would imagine that there have been far more "civvy" psychologists involved in the fallout of Rwanda than ones dressed in green.
 
#17
TomB said:
some civvy psychologists will be able to treat some squaddies very successfully ..
and some will not and make a poorly informed diagnosis. I would suggest that there are vast inconsistencies in how referrals occur. Could it be for instance, be that the more sucessful outcomes are those where a CMT, psych nurse, perciepive military collegue or dependant have first noticed that there was a problem, documented it and perhaps even took the time to speak to the psych themselves.

The quality of the case notes on military patients, recieved by clinical psychologists can vary wildly.


TomB said:
There may be situations where an insight to a persons experiences would be very useful but given the number of Forces Psychologists who will have experienced personally all the potential horrors of Forces life 1st hand (probably around 0 at the last count) then it looks as if we`ll have to make do with what is available..
A cadre of uniformed military psychologists would certainly not have experienced the horrors of military life themselves. However an understanding of the military ethos and exposure to the unique issues that units and specific military Career Employment Groups face, goes a long way to early diagnosis.

This ability to better diagnose such cases early, at Unit level, can in turn save

- the careers of soldiers, who are expensive to train.

- their personal relationships, which can frequently break down when placed under stress by psychological illness.

- In the worst case: the lives of those who are driven to suicide by depression, or an early grave by alchoholism.

I'm out of the loop now, but would suggest that in qualative terms the question should not be: is one psychologist better than another?

Perhaps we need to ask if the diagnosis and treatment of military patients has got better or worse??
 
#18
Fact is there is a lack of psychologists in the NHS never mind in the Army & posts at my local Psych hospital have been unfilled for a few years so the chances of getting a sufficient number of them to "diagnose at unit level" is wishful thinking.

That early patient contact is almost always going to be by Medics, GP's & CPN's - in my experience referrals to psychologists don't happen overnight and the wait for an appointment can take months.

I still dont feel that a psychologist has to me a member of the forces to have an understanding of the stress that role can involve otherwise we`d be looking (in an ideal world) at employing psychologists in the fire service, police, ambulance service & that just aint gonna happen to any great degree.

netleynirse said:
I'm out of the loop now, but would suggest that in qualative terms the question should not be: is one psychologist better than another?

Perhaps we need to ask if the diagnosis and treatment of military patients has got better or worse??
??? Diagnosis & treatment of what?.........& better or worse than what?
 
#19
On reflecting on this topic, why the focus on psychologists anyway? They are only one part of the MDT either in the MOD or NHS. The competence of Psychiatrists, Mental Health Nurses and Social Workers is just as much, if not more of, an issue.

BTW, my contact with NHS mental health staff has left me with the impression that they tend to assume that all psychological pathology in service or ex-service personnel is due to war or op trauma. That is not the case. This can be a more serious problem than it sounds in the long run. If I had a quid for every NHS diagnosed 'PTSD' case I've come across who was in fact a) alcohol dependant (not that the two are mutually exclusive of course) b) a depressive episode c) adjustment reaction d) a compensation neurosis- I'd have £23!
 
#20
There used to be a psychiatric TA unit, but no doubt thats been sunk by the bean counters. I was there PSI for a while, but can't remember thier title. Good bunch of lads.

Over the years I was in, we had many a good SRMN/SEMN, AND TRICK CYCLISTS, served the soldiers well, especially those from 22.

Build another Netley,thats what I say.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 

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