A somewhat belated Happy New Year to everyone. Welcome to mid-January.
I hope all of you had a bit of a break over the Christmas and New Year period and were able to recharge your batteries. There are a lot of bugs going around so I’m aware many have been fighting the effects of very nasty colds and possibly flu. The wintry weather in many parts of the UK has also been a challenge for some.
The New Savoy Partnership/Division of Clinical Psychology annual wellbeing survey has opened and please, please do complete the survey and let us know about your wellbeing and what could help. The survey findings of the past three years have demonstrated significant levels of low mood and stress in psychological professions as well as some examples of good practice. Staff health and wellbeing has become a cause for concern across the health and care workforce and rarely a week goes by without news stories on this area. It is important we highlight our positives and negatives particularly given that our work in holding, containing and helping people in emotional and psychological distress. The survey is here: https://cardiffunipsych.eu.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_4SzSmpBpZHPMfhX .
There are also consultations on professional regulation and workforce strategy. Both these are areas that have significant potential to affect our professions.
The Promoting Professionalism, Reforming Regulation consultation (https://consultations.dh.gov.uk/professional-regulation/regulatory-reform/) closes on Tuesday 23rd. By the time you read this, it may have closed. It is focusing on reforming the number of regulatory bodies (there are nine covering 55 professions) and also reviewing which professions should be regulated. Psychological professions are partially regulated and partially not given that some professions are regulated by the HCPC but some are accredited by professional organisations. The consultation has focused on three main themes – protecting the public, responsive and efficient regulation and impact assessment. While this feels like a dry topic for many of us, it has potential implications for regulation in the future so keep an eye out for the response to the consultation and other opportunities to influence this agenda.
The second consultation, which runs until 23rd March, is the draft NHS workforce strategy – Facing the Facts, Shaping the Future: a draft health and care workforce strategy for England to 2027 (https://www.hee.nhs.uk/our-work/planning-commissioning/workforce-strategy). This is a worrying document in that there are only nine mentions of psychological professions (either psychology, psychological therapists or mental health therapists) in the 124 pages. The PPN will be responding to this document but I’d really encourage fellow psychological professions to respond to this consultation too so we can demonstrate the benefits of what we can offer alongside our colleagues.
So far, it seems like a busy year with challenges ahead. Challenges can bring opportunities and I hope as the nights get lighter and spring approaches, the PPN will be able to grow and develop further too. It needs all our support to do so.