In this issue


The NHS in 2015: still a scary possibility to come (free article)
Gillian Proctor reflects on the accuracy of her 2002 predictions about the future of the health service

Therapist prejudices and how to overcome them
Chris Athanasiadis uses the systemic concept of ‘prejudice’ to illustrate the adverse effects of inflexibility in theorising about client issues

Unique journeys
Sue Shortt’s study explored the impact of breast cancer on sexuality among young, single women

Connecting in Scotland 
Satinder Panesar reports on her work for the BACP Healthcare division in setting up counsellor networks


Chair’s report – BACP Healthcare
Zubeida Ali

Healthcare update
Judy Stafford

Counselling in Primary Care
Richard Mason

Third Sector Perspective
Michael Lilley

Cover of Healthcare Counselling and Psychotherapy Journal October 2015

A pdf of this issue is available in the Healthcare Counselling and Psychotherapy Journal archive.

From the editor

As counsellors and psychotherapists providing therapy to clients in NHS-funded services, we work in an ever-changing arena. Over the last few years in England, for example, there has been the implementation of IAPT and evidence-based practice as recommended by NICE, as well as the introduction of GP-led Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs); and in Scotland, The Matrix1 now guides psychological therapy provision.

Back in 2002, Gillian Proctor wrote an article for this journal in which she imagined it was 2015 and she was tracing the history of the NHS from 1985 to 2015. We are delighted that Gillian has updated her article for us, reflecting on the extent to which her predictions from 13 years ago were accurate, and predicting again the possible changes to come. We also publish an extract from Gillian’s original article, so you can compare for yourself how far she was able to forecast the future.

Whatever the changes in our work settings, our therapy with clients continues. Sue Shortt’s article details her study which explored the impact of breast cancer on sexuality. Inspired both by Sue’s personal experience and her volunteer experience with Breast Cancer Care (BCC), the research focused on young, single women. In writing, Sue’s hope is that the article will add to counsellors’ understanding of some of the issues affecting this under-researched client group.

Also in this issue, Chris Athanasiadis reflects on the adverse effects of theorising about client issues. The author uses a case example from his own therapeutic work to show the ways in which unconscious ‘prejudices’ may interfere with helping the client.

Many thanks to all the contributors to this issue for their excellent work; please do contact me if you would like to write for us. Our authors also welcome your views on their articles, and I welcome any feedback you might have about the journal as a whole.

Sarah Hovington


1 NHS Education for Scotland. The Matrix 2011. Mental Health in Scotland. A guide to delivering evidence-based psychological therapies in Scotland. Edinburgh: NHS Education for Scotland; 2011.