As part of assisting staff wellbeing, Newcastle Occupational Health Service (OHS) offer the opportunity for employees to access support from our Counselling team.
If you self-refer to us, you will usually be offered a confidential telephone appointment with one of our counsellors to discuss what we offer, and if such a service will meet your current needs.
This service is different from the support you might be offered in the community (for example by your GP or your local Talking Therapies service).
We offer short term, time-limited support, and our main specialism is in issues related to work and workplace wellbeing. For this reason, if your difficulty is more long-standing, or requires a specialist service (e.g. domestic violence, bereavement, psychiatry). We might suggest that you contact them in the first instance, to make sure that your needs are met fully.
We are always happy to discuss this with you, if you are unsure.
Newcastle OHS Counselling is not an urgent care service and there will usually be a wait for appointments. If you have urgent concerns, you should contact your GP, NHS 111, emergency services, or attend your local emergency department (depending on the urgency). If you have access to your local crisis team, you may also contact them.
It is very important that you feel confident that we will protect your information when you speak with us; especially if it is about something sensitive or that you are worried about. We have two different routes into our service, and confidentiality works slightly differently between these.
We will always explain to you what will happen to your information before you go ahead with any consultation.
If you self-refer to our service, everything you speak about will remain confidential.
We do not share any information with your manager or HR, and our documentation is separate from your other records.
The only exception to this would be if we were very worried about your safety, or someone else’s safety. In that case, we might share some of your information with other agencies who might help to keep people safe. We would always try to speak to you about it first.
If you are referred by your manager as part of the management Referral process, we will discuss with you any queries raised by your manager about how to support you in your work or back to work.
Your manager should have your consent to do this. We will agree the contents of a report to share with your manager which gives them an overview of any support that we would suggest. This report will not include confidential information that you do not want to share and you always have the option to approve this report before your manager receives it.
You can also see our information statement to find out more about how we use and store your personal information.
The British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) states counselling ‘provides a safe and confidential space for you to talk to a trained professional about your issues and concerns. Your therapist will help you explore your thoughts, feelings and behaviours so you can develop a better understanding of yourself and of others. Your counsellor will help you find your own solutions – whether that’s making effective changes in your life or finding ways of coping with your problems.’
Counsellors are impartial, but they are understanding and will listen to you without judgment. During counselling, you may be offered information, but counsellors will not tell you what you should think or do.
Education sessions and groups
We offer a range of sessions that staff can access to find out more about common topics that affect our wellbeing. Sessions are advertised via In Brief or online and you can contact email@example.com if you have any queries about our sessions. Some of our sessions are video recorded and can be found on the OHS website.
Services outside of OHS
We may signpost you to other local services if we think that they can meet your needs more effectively. Most of these accept self-referrals, but if you need help finding your local service or need to access a more specialist service, you should speak with your GP in the first instance.