Bishops Waltham Surgery

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Mental Health Practitioner

What is a Mental Health Practitioner?

Sometimes referred to as a First Contact Mental Health Practitioner, this member of staff is an experienced professional who can support you with either a diagnosed or undiagnosed mental health concern. This could be one or a number of mental health feelings and symptoms such as anxiety, low mood, loneliness, grief, hallucinations or stress.

How can a Mental Health Practitioner support me?

A Mental Health Practitioner focuses on your individual mental health needs and offers a safe space to talk about your feelings and how they can be supported. They have the abilities to listen, advise you on support options available and can provide wider access to a registered mental health professional or service should you need it.

Where is a Mental Heath Practitioner based?

Bishops Waltham Surgery has a Mental Health Practitioner based at the surgery on a Thursday.  

How do I make an appointment to see a Mental Health Practitioner? 

You can book an appointment with our Mental Health Practitioner via the surgery and you do not require a referral from a GP. When calling the surgery for an appointment the reception staff will be able to book you in for either a face-to-face or telephone appointment with the mental health practitioner.

What can i expect from an appointment with a Mental Health Practitioner?

During an initial appointment a Mental Health Practitioner will ask some questions, and may use some screening tools, to help them understand the nature and extent of your concern. They will discuss the support options available and together with you, can decide on the next course of action. It may be agreed that they speak to you again to review how you are getting on, or to give you time to consider what you would like to happen next. In some instances a mental health practitioner may be able to provide a short-term intervention to help you overcome your difficulties rather than referring you elsewhere.

Will I need to see a Mental Health Practitioner on a regular basis?

The frequency you interact with the Mental Health Practitioner will depend of your personal circumstances and your discussed support plan. You may only have a one off appointment which is then followed up in a couple of weeks, or it may be more ongoing for a period of time. The Mental Health Practitioner will discuss with you, what is best for you.

If you would like to book an appointment with our Mental Health Practitioner, please contact the surgery on 01489 892 288

Out of hours

If you want to talk to someone about how you’re feeling, or what you’re experiencing, you can contact:    

  • 111 –  Mental Health Triage Service  – can be accessed by phone by dialling 111 and online at
  • Samaritans  –  116 123 offers a safe place for you to talk any time you like, in your own way – about whatever’s getting to you. You don’t have to be suicidal.
  • Text service  If you’re experiencing a personal crisis, are unable to cope and need support, text Shout to 85258. More information available on the SHOUT website.
  • If you live in Southampton and feel you are at crisis point with your mental health, you can come and visit the Lighthouse
  • Adults’ Safe Haven – open for face to face mental health support at the Wellbeing Hub in Leigh Park. A team of Crisis workers, Mental Health Practitioners  and drug and alcohol support workers, help provide support and advice to people experiencing a mental health crisis.