The GHA has hired an additional counsellor to work alongside the chartered counselling psychologist and counsellor currently providing services at the Primary Care Centre.
The GHA has also engaged an additional consultant clinical psychologist to provide in-patient care at the Ocean Views mental health facility.
As part of a string of enhancements to mental health services, a Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service will commence in January.
Counsellors listen to patients and help to find ways for them to deal with any emotional or other issues.
This type of therapy can prove beneficial to persons experiencing:
a mental health condition, such as depression, anxiety or an eating disorder; an upsetting physical health condition;
a difficult life event, such as a bereavement, a relationship breakdown or work-related stress; and difficult emotions – such as low self-esteem or anger.
Counsellors are often the first port of call for patients who may be experiencing mental health issues or concerns.
In some cases, when deemed appropriate, a counsellor may refer a patient on to a psychologist, psychiatrist or other mental health professionals.
“Everyone, throughout the course of their lives, will develop their own unique set of life experiences, so the exact path to overcoming any existing problems will inevitably vary between individuals,” said Chris Chipolina, General Manager for Mental Health Services.
“While there are many shared problems, and common issues, the exact elements at play will always differ from case to case.”
“By working in partnership with clients, a professional counsellor can help improve the skill of decision making, reduce tension, develop better self-esteem, confidence and feel generally more positive and optimistic towards life.”
“Counselling is a step-by-step process that requires time and consistency in order for the therapy to work; increasing the availability of therapists will help tremendously towards achieving this goal.”
Neil Costa, the Minister for Health, Care and Justice, said counsellors offered a key service.
“In many cases, persons experiencing emotional issues can benefit from this type of therapy, by talking to a trained professional,” he said.