You may have many questions to do with Counselling and Mental Health support while studying at the University of Worcester. We hope that you will find some answers below, but if your question is not answered, please email us.
In order to provide you with support that meets your individual needs, we ask you to book a STAR (Support, Triage, Advice, Refer) appointment via firstpoint.
In an emergency, or if you don’t feel that you can keep yourself safe, please contact your GP, go to Accident and Emergency, or call 999 for an ambulance. For Samaritans call 01905 21121 or 116123.
If during the STAR appointment you are referred to further Counselling or Mental Health Support you will usually be given an indication of how long before you will be offered a Counselling or Mental Health Support appointment. This will depend on various things: your availability, the urgency of your situation, the time of the year (the service has some very busy periods of the year and some quieter).
The service is open throughout the year, Monday to Friday, 8.30am to 4:30pm, except when the university is closed at Christmas and Easter.
The Counselling & Mental Health Service is located on St John's Campus in Woodbury. You will find us at the end of the corridor signposted University Health Centre.
No, the service is free for all students who need specialist support whilst studying.
Sessions typically last up to 50 minutes.
Please email the practitioner you are due to see as soon as possible; if you don't have their individual contact details, email email@example.com
This will be discussed with your counsellor/mental health advisor when you meet. Appointments are based on your needs, so they may be weekly, fortnightly or monthly.
For Counselling, you will generally be offered a fixed number of sessions to focus on the issue you have presented. In exceptional circumstances, this may be extended. It is important to remember that if you give less than 2 working days notice of cancellation or simply don't attend, you may lose that session from your allocation.
For Mental Health Advice, you may be offered a fixed number of sessions but in some circumstances, based on an assessment of your needs, appointments may be ongoing.
Yes. However, if your regular practitioner is away or unavailable and you have an emergency, you may be offered a brief appointment with another member of the team.
Yes. When you meet a practitioner for an initial appointment they will work with you to assess if they, or another member of the team, is right for you. If you find that the sessions are not going as you hoped, it is always best to discuss this with the practitioner first. If the difficulty cannot be overcome then they will refer you to another practitioner.
For Counselling, you can bring whatever concerns you. People come to counselling to make sense of the world around them; identify patterns of thought and behaviour and, if necessary, change patterns which have outlived their usefulness. It can help people come to terms with past experiences, seek new perspectives and alternative strategies for living.
For Mental Health Advice, our advisors can give practical advice on managing mental health conditions that you already know about, or those that may be just emerging; they can advise on managing prescribed medication where relevant; and they undertake mental health assessments. With your permission, they may discuss your needs with other members of university staff, and can make referrals to external mental health services in the NHS.
No, our records are kept confidentially and separately from any other university records. However, there may be circumstances when you may wish your practitioner to discuss your situation and needs with other people - this will always be made explicit and, except in very rare circumstances, done with your written consent.
If you are on a professional training course, such as nursing, midwifery, paramedic training or teaching, your practitioner may discuss your 'fitness to practice' if they are sufficiently concerned. In this situation they will do all they can to support you in progressing whilst also considering the needs of any people you may be working with on placements.
If you are concerned for a peer, friend or housemate, please encourage them to get in touch with the service- by phoning, emailing or completing our online self-referral form. If supporting them is difficult, you may wish to make an appointment for yourself.
Please visit the section on Concerned about someone else? for further advice.
If you are unhappy with the service you have received, try to discuss this with your counsellor or mental health advisor directly, otherwise, you can speak to one of the Senior Counsellors or Head of Student Services. If this is not possible or doesn't resolve things, you can make a formal complaint via the university complaints procedure. The Counsellors and Mental Health Advisors belong to professional bodies, with ethical codes of conduct and their own complaints procedures - BACP for counsellors and NMC for mental health advisors.