Update: 9-19-14. This post is being reviewed for accuracy.
I began writing this post with the intent to report on the Clinic for Dissociative Studies in England. As I got deeper into their website checking the credentials of the employees, questions piled up and I am left wondering about those who operate this facility and the quality of patient care.
I kept finding meaningless phrases on their website describing credentials of Clinic practitioners:
- worked as
- worked with
- studied at
- experienced in
- trained in
I am most concerned with the “psychotherapist” designation without any professional and/or educational degrees or credentials listed. All of these phrases are meaningless. If individuals held degrees and/or certifications, we can assume they would be listed.
It appears many “practitioners” at this institution are indeed uneducated and do not hold degrees or certifications from institutions of higher learning in psychiatry and/or psychology. In the absence of such advanced learning it appears that the Clinic for Dissociative Studies employs “psychotherapists” with dubious educational backgrounds. The Clinic, therefore, may rely heavily on prior work history and/or personal interests of employees rather than educational expertise. I am inclined to believe people want others to know they hold advanced degrees or training. This, in my opinion, can be deceiving and confusing to those seeking mental health care. Psychiatric slogans and psychobabble are rife on this website.
What insight does this offer the public about the diagnosis and treatment of Dissociative Identity Disorder? What type and quality of professional treatment is offered those who believe they have multiple personalities/alter selves/ or internal parts? It seems clear that patients paying to receive treatment at this facility may, or may not, be receiving care from practitioners with educational credentials. but rather – “worked with” or “trained as” status. Hum.
Dissociative Identity Disorder is big business. Treatment is known to be long and arduous. Who is actually providing day-to-day care?Doctors or laypersons with experience?
Who is listed on the billing for reimbursement? – the non-professional or the doctor? You decide.
From the Clinic for Dissociative Studies website:
Assessment, Treatment and Training
The Clinic for Dissociative Studies was set up with the aid of the Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust in 1998. It is one of the few national centres of specialist expertise in the care and treatment of people with dissociative disorders.
As an Independent Provider to the NHS it is commissioned by Clinical Commissioning Groups, former PCTs, mental health trusts and local authorities nationally to provide diagnosis, outpatient treatment, clinical supervision and training.
The Clinic is currently supporting research work undertaken by University College London and the University of Essex. Members of the Clinic Faculty will in 2012 be lecturing in the USA, Canada, South Africa, Germany, France, Portugal and all over the UK.
The Clinic does not treat patients privately but only via NHS referral (see ‘What we do‘ for more information).
Dissociative disorders, in particular dissociative identity disorder (DID), arise in response to extreme trauma and abuse (see ‘About DID‘ for more information).
Treatment options can vary depending on a range of factors, including the severity of the trauma experienced and whether abuse is still continuing. The Clinic for Dissociative Studies specialises in providing psychotherapy for individuals, couples and families on an intensive or non-intensive basis. Treatment is provided by experienced senior psychotherapists with specialist experience in working with dissociative disorders (see ‘About us‘), and can be supported by a range of other therapies if required
- Valerie Sinason, PhD, PGTC, MAACP, Director
- Graeme Galton – Consultant Psychotherapist
- Cate Potter, BA DipHE, Mental Health Nursing – Case & Referrals Manager
Assessment and Research Specialist Consultants ,
- Dr Raj Attavar – consultant psychiatrist and psychotherapist; specialist – disability and dissociation.
- Dr Arnon Bentovim – consultant child psychiatrist, family therapist and adult psychoanalyst. He is an international expert on child abuse.
- Professor Brett Kahr – assessments for couples
- Dr Susan McPherson – independent research consultant
- Dr Phil Mollon – consultant psychologist, psychotherapist and adult psychoanalyst; specialist in PEP.
- Professor John Morton – conducts memory research on amnesia between alter-personalities.
SCID-D assessments are also carried out by Graeme Galton & Adah Sachs.
- Adah Sachs – specialist.. working with severe self-harm; a psychotherapist and supervisor at the Clinic; in private practice
- Alan Corbett trained at the Guild of Psychotherapists; trained in Forensic Psychotherapy & Child Psychotherapy; private practice; is experienced in helping people with a range of emotional difficulties connected with such issues as stress, anxiety, bereavement, gender dysfunction, sexuality, ageing [sic], body image, sexual abuse and other trauma.
- Lynn Greenwood – psychotherapist – interest in adolescents and adults who exhibit behaviours that are destructive; consultant psychotherapist for several television programmes.
- Shahnawaz Haque – psychotherapy training and experience; worked in the world of finance, and currently continues to be closely involved in the running of a Mosque, and in teaching Arabic and aspects of Islam to adults and children.
- Liz Lloyd – consultant psychotherapist in private practice
- Lesley McGown – Relational Integrative Psychotherapist and Clinical Supervisor; experience in working with severe trauma.
- Rachel Wingfield-Schwartz – worked with trauma and dissociation.
- Julian Turner works for MIND; in private practice; worked with people with dissociative disorders for over 20 years.
- Ina Walker worked as a nurse in oncology; retrained, gaining a psychosocial degree at UEL; training in Infant and Young Child Observations at the Tavistock Clinic; qualify as a psychoanalytic psychotherapist; gained experience in severe trauma; individual and couple therapist; has a private practice.
- Judy Williams MA, MACP, DipCOT is a psychoanalytically trained psychotherapist, registered; registered occupational therapist; provide packages of care and treatment for individuals with dissociative disorders,.. associated complex needs and intellectual (learning) disability. She has an independent practice in Manchester and offers psychotherapy assessment and treatment for adults, adolescents and children.
Adjunct Clinicians, Therapists and Counsellors
- Zoe Hawton – works with children and adults with dissociative identity disorder using creative arts as well as verbal treatment.
- Dr Nikki Scheiner, consultant psychologist and psychotherapist who uses CAT as well as other methods including sensory-motor.
- Sue Cook – from TAG
- Sue Cross – from TAG
- ther colleagues from TAG.
- No address listed
- No post box listed.
- No business hours listed.
- No fees listed.
The Clinic for Dissociative Studies lists the consultants as “Dr” which suggests “doctor” however, no other information is available from the website. Dr. designation can indicate medical doctor, a PhD (Doctor of Philosophy), or a doctor of art history for all we know. Readers are forced to do their own research into the backgrounds of these individuals OR take the Clinic’s word for it that they indeed hold degrees appropriate to the services rendered.
 The requirements for “expert” and the designation of “expert” are non-existent. An expert is an expert because they say they are an expert – or others deem him or her to be an expert.
 “Psychotherapist” is not an advanced degree. Anyone, in the United States for example, can claim to be a “psychotherapist”; there is no educational requirement for a “psychotherapist”. Again, the public must do their own research on these individuals.
 “Trained in” : this phrase does not indicate a degree or certification was obtained. It simply means a person attended a particular institution of study or was mentored under someone considered an “expert” in a particular field. This term can be misleading.
 “Experienced in” is a phrase that does not indicate anything. We are all “experienced in” something. This term is sometimes used to enhance past work-related areas where a degree or specialized training is absent. This term can be misleading.
 “Worked with” is a phrase indicates just that: worked with. This term is sometimes used to enhance past work-related areas where a degree or specialized training is absent. This term can be misleading.