In March 2017, BACP, the Association of Child Psychotherapists (ACP), the British Psychoanalytic Council (BPC) and the UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP) launched a joint survey to capture information from members who were currently, or who had in the last five years, provided therapeutic services within the UK health services.

Headline findings

  • almost a third of participants currently working in NHS children’s services reported that their service would be downsizing, with some services facing closure
  • almost two-thirds of respondents stated that in their service the NHS banding for counselling
    and psychotherapy roles had already or was planned to be downgraded.
  • participants saw worrying signs of declining services for children:
    - 84% reported children have needed to have
    increasingly severe levels of illness in order to get help over the past five years
    - 76% said the number of posts is currently inadequate to meet clients’ needs
    - 67% reported waiting times have got longer over the last five years
    - 70% said waiting times are currently inadequate to meet clients’ needs

These findings suggest that NHS services for children have been increasingly starved of resources, and are now facing a staffing and resourcing crisis which is having a serious and detrimental impact on the services available to vulnerable children and young people.