University of Hertfordshire

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Experiences of Newly-Qualified Clinical Psychologists in CAMHS: An IPA Study

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Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Mental Health Training, Education and Practice
Publication statusPublished - 4 Jan 2021


There is a gap in the literature regarding the experiences of newly-qualified Clinical Psychologists working within Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) in the National Health Service (NHS). This study aimed to explore three aspects of newly-qualified Clinical Psychologists’ experiences: their transition and development; working in multi-disciplinary teams located in large organisations; and support and coping in the role. Seven participants each engaged in one semi-structured interview, and an Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) was conducted. Three super-ordinate themes emerged from the analysis: 1) A big jump: the transition from trainee to NQCP; 2) The support of home comforts, old and new; and 3) Acknowledging and desiring ongoing development. Implications and recommendations for both Clinical Psychology training programmes and NHS employers are discussed, in order to support the development and wellbeing of this staff group, and in turn the clinical population they serve. These include gradually increasing caseloads on training, a staggered workload at the outset of the transition, and CAMHS teams ensuring appropriate supervision for NQCPs

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