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Birmingham and Solihull Mental health NHS Foundation Trust
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Specialist psychotherapies service

The Specialist Psychotherapies Service is a multidisciplinary specialist team providing a range of outpatient psychotherapeutic packages which places patients’ own version of their life experiences, history and relationships at the centre of their care.

The Specialist Psychotherapies Service offers a range of psychodynamic based interventions. Psychodynamic psychotherapy is a particular way of understanding and helping people with mental health difficulties.  It is an approach that gathers and considers the patient’s personal story, past and present circumstances, relationship patterns and inner feelings and emotions.
The service is offered to patients experiencing longstanding and complex mental health difficulties aged 25+ living in the Birmingham area or individuals aged 16+ living in the Solihull area.

We can help with the following issues: 

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Eating disorders
  • Self-harm
  • Sexual, physical and emotional abuse
  • Emotional difficulties related to pregnancy and childcare
  • Gender and identity issues
  • Adjustment difficulties, e.g. bereavement/ cultural conflicts/physical illness
  • Relationship difficulties
  • Personality problems


The Specialist Psychotherapies Service provides assessments and a range of therapeutic interventions in individual and group formats. The services available include:

  • Psychodynamic assessment of patients with complex psychiatric, psychological and social difficulties
  • Individual psychodynamic psychotherapy
  • Group psychodynamic psychotherapy
  • Compassion Focused Therapy
  • Art psychotherapy
  • One day therapeutic programme for people with a diagnosis of Personality disorder
  • Link with Birmingham Healthy Minds  providing a step 4 pilot (complex primary care requiring long term intervention but not psychiatry)
  • Link with the DBT service for people with personality disorder
  • Consultation liaison with mental health professionals offering care to patients
  • Consultation and support to acute Psychiatric wards and Mental Health Teams
  • In reach services  to CMHT’s and inpatient teams (in reach is tailored but often involves any of the following: complex case consultation, joint assessment, supervision and reflective groups)
  • Training (including the Knowledge and Understanding Framework (KUF)), supervision, Psychology trainee placements, medical placements and honorary placements


This service is accessible to patients referred by a healthcare professional.

Once you have been referred, if we think we might be able to help, you will receive a letter inviting you for an initial assessment appointment. 

An assessment usually involves meeting on more than one occasion and talking to a therapist about what is troubling you.

The aim of an assessment is to begin to develop a shared understanding of your difficulties and give you an experience of the way in which we work.  Then, on the basis of these meetings, decide whether or not what we offer might be helpful to you.
There is usually a wait between assessment and therapy starting.  During this time your assessor remains the person to contact if your situation changes. 

We send a summary of the assessment and what has been agreed to the person who referred you to us and your GP.  This is so that they are aware of your involvement with us and can support the therapeutic work as needed.   At the end of your assessment you will be asked if you would like a copy of this summary and have the opportunity to discuss this with your assessor.

Therapy sessions usually take place once a week, on the same day and time, for up to two years. These sessions usually last 50 minutes for individual therapy or 90 minutes for group therapy.

Therapy sessions provide a space for you to talk about your experiences in the past and present. Your therapist will make links between your past experiences and present relationship patterns and inner feelings and emotions.


Psychodynamic therapies have been shown by research to have positive effects for a range of psychological disorders including depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder and eating disorders.

Further information on the effectiveness of psychodynamic therapies can be found in Psychological, Psychiatric and Medical journals. Please follow the link below for further information on the effectiveness of psychodynamic therapies:
http://psychoanalysis.org.uk/resources/evidence-base-of-psychoanalytic-psychotherapy

Exploring emotions, thoughts and feelings can be a very difficult process and for this reason some people may find that therapy makes them feel worse in the short term. Your therapist will be able to help you to better understand and work through difficult emotional reactions and behaviors during your weekly therapy sessions.

If therapy is too demanding or you find that it is not helpful to you, your therapist will work together with you to review your experience and to understand the best way forward in continuing with the therapy.

The Specialist Psychotherapies Service is committed to providing a high quality service within sound professional and ethical frameworks. Our staff receive supervision and regular monitoring to ensure high standards of care.

We are an equal opportunity service providing:

  • Disabled access
  • Interpreters available for people who cannot speak English, or who are hard of hearing.
  • A User Voice Development Worker:   The user representative encourages users of our service via the ‘Users’ Forum to feedback to the Specialist Psychotherapies Service management team on issues, which can shape care.


The Specialist Psychotherapies Service is based on 2 sites:
Callum Lodge            The Coach House                 
242 Lodge Road            Uffculme Site.               
Winson Green            Queensbridge Road               
B18 5SJ                            B13 8QY

For queries please contact our Callum Lodge site using the contact details below:
Tel no: 0121 301 3800                       
Fax no: 0121 301 3801

For specific enquires please reference the following clinician names when contacting the service:
  • Medical trainees placements - Simon Heyland
  • Clinical Psychologist Trainee Placements - Rachel Hirschfeld
  • Step 4 - Laura Chaisty
  • Compassion Focussed Therapy - Kate Lucre
  • Honorary Placements & Management - Graine Murray
  • Knowledge and Understanding Framework - Dan Quinn
  • Service User Involvement -

You may have questions or worries that arise during assessment or therapy sessions. These may be important to your therapy and you may feel able to discuss these with your therapist.

For any concerns unrelated to your therapy please contact out Patient Advice and Liaison Service on 0800 953 0045 or email customerrelations@bsmhft.nhs.uk