Other support services

Below is a directory of other useful support services that you can access.

If you would like support with navigating the directory, or advice to find the right support service for you, our practitioners will be happy to guide you via our online chat.

Anxiety UK

Works to relieve and support those living with anxiety disorders by providing information, support and understanding via an extensive range of services, including 1:1 therapy.

BACP Find a Therapist Directory

Find out more about counselling services in your area via the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy.

Beat Eating Disorders

Beat provides Helplines for adults and young people offering support and information about eating disorders. These Helplines are free to call from all phones. Helpline: 0808 801 0677 Studentline: 0808 801 0811 Youthline: 0808 801 0711 

Body & Soul – free counselling for NHS staff

Body & Soul is an innovative charity that uses a comprehensive, community-based and trauma informed approach. They have developed a ‘whole person’ model of care rooted in a strengths based approach that nurtures connection, healing and growth. They are offering free counselling for NHS staff as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic. They can offer 6-12 30 minute sessions, or a one off 30 minute session. All sessions are confidential and free of charge.

Carers Trust

Support for carers to find carer support and replacement care services near you.

Centre for Mental Health

Supporting those with mental health issues due to dicrimination, exclusion, poverty and racism: a call to action.

Cruse Bereavement Care

Cruse offers telephone, email and website support. They have a Freephone national helpline and local services, and a website (hopeagain.org.uk) specifically for children and young people. Their services are provided by a network of 5,000 trained volunteers and are confidential and free. 

Financial Advice and Support from Citizens Advice

Citizens Advice have collated together some resources and signposting links for financial support. These are available to all NHS and social care staff. They provide advice or support on the following: Money and Debt Advice Struggling to pay rent Helping to Save Budgeting Helping with Childcare Costs Energy Bills Credit Unions

Financial Wellbeing for NHS Staff

This is a difficult time for NHS staff and financial concerns have  consistently been in the top five reasons staff call the free support helpline run by the Samaritans. NHS England have partnered with the Money and Pensions Service to provide financial wellbeing support to help you manage your finances at home. NHS staff support line telephone support line: NHS colleagues can call this support line, provided by the Money Advice Service, for free and impartial money advice from Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm. Call: 0800 448 0826 WhatsApp: Message +44 7701 342 744 on WhatsApp and send the Money Advice Service’s national support team a message for help with sorting out your debts, credit questions and pensions guidance.

Free relationship counselling for health and social care staff

Supporting staff and their relationships In demanding times, relationships of all kinds can come under pressure, and have an impact on our wellbeing at home and at work. Free, flexible, online relationship support is now available for health and social care staff, to support you when your relationships come under stress. This service, provided by Tavistock Relationships through the KeepingWell staff wellbeing Hubs, offers up to six online therapy sessions for couples or individuals. The sessions will focus on strengths in the relationship, to help couples or individuals recover, hold onto their resilience, and provide the space you may need to work through challenges and demands. “I felt I was going around in circles with my partner and now I feel like we are moving forward. I feel acknowledged and heard due to having another person with us during challenging discussions.” About Tavistock Relationships Tavistock Relationships is a non-profit organisation with an international reputation as a leading training and research centre in therapeutic and psycho-educational approaches to supporting couples. They provide a range of affordable services to help people with relationship difficulties, sexual problems and parenting challenges.

Frontline19 – free therapy for NHS and frontline workers

Frontline19 is a FREE independent, confidential and UK  based nationwide service delivering psychological support to people working on the frontline. They offer support to NHS staff and anyone working on the frontline, including social care staff. They will match you with a qualified professional therapist They will try to work around your shifts where possible They provide a safe place to listen to you and provide emotional support where appropriate. Sessions can be via Zoom, Skype, FaceTime, WhatsApp or phone Click here to access support from Frontline19.

Headspace App: Free for NHS Staff

Headspace have made their mindfulness app free to all NHS clinical and non-clinical staff to provide support in this time of crisis. The app provides a range of mindfulness meditations. Wellbeing Quiz Profile: #MoreFrantic #FeelingHopeless

Hopeline19 – voice messages of support, love and appreciation for your work

The last 18 months or so have been incredibly challenging for so many of us. However, people working in the NHS and frontline services have endured some of the most traumatic experiences of their careers and in fact, lives. Hopeline19 is a campaign set up by Frontline19 which aims to connect the public with our NHS & frontline workers. It is a phone line that enables you to call up for free and leave a voice message to show your support, love and appreciation for the very people that have been working in incredibly challenging and life-changing ways for months on end. NHS and frontline workers are then able to call up and listen to these messages of support. We want to encourage people to keep the conversation going and to continue to break the taboos surrounding emotional wellbeing and mental health. Anyone can call 0808 19 665 19 for free 24/7. Dermot O’Leary will answer the phone with a pre-recorded message. You can press 1 to leave your message of gratitude, or 2 to listen to the messages if you’re an NHS or frontline worker. Click here to read more about Hopeline19.

Housing Advice

Shelter offer free housing advice and guidance on a range of issues, such as homelessness, private renting, eviction, tenancy deposits, repairs, benefits, council housing and mortgage repossession.

LGBT Foundation Wellbeing Hub

LGBT foundation have curated resources, advice and guides to form part of their online wellbeing hub to support members of the LGBTQIA+ community during the pandemic. You can access all of this on their website via the link below.

Click here to visit their website.

Live Well – NHS health and wellbeing resources

This resource offers information, tips and tools to help you make the best choices about your health and wellbeing. Part of the NHS website, Live Well collates guidance and resources in a number of different health areas, including: mental wellbeing, sleep and tiredness, exercise, eating well, sexual health, and more.

Looking After Your Career – free coaching for primary care

NHS England are running free coaching sessions for all NHS staff working in primary care. Individual coaching is available with a skilled and experienced career coach. The aim of the service is to provide an easy to access, individually tailored coaching service that focuses on supporting you with your career choices. You can choose to talk about whatever is important to you about your career and your career decisions. The coaching is designed to be bespoke to your needs. Who is it for? All staff working in the delivery of primary care services. You will be either employed by the NHS or working with an NHS funded employer delivering an NHS funded primary care contract. How does it work? Simply register and book a coaching session Sessions are available Monday to Friday between 8am and 8pm and Saturday between 10am and 6pm. The first session will last up to 45 minutes. The sessions will be delivered virtually, preferably via a video platform, but telephone appointments are also available. Subsequent sessions will be dependent on the conversation between you and your coach. Your coach might signpost you on to further support if they think this might be helpful. You may receive follow-up emails to support you in your career once your coaching sessions have finished.

Mental health and wellbeing support for medics

This resource includes a series of in-depth ‘Wellbeing Sessions’, which provide structured support for doctors and medical students looking to improve their own wellbeing. If you have less time available, or would like to explore a range of topics, there are also two other types of support available. ‘Find Out More’ guides offer an overview of different wellbeing areas, and tips on what to do next. ‘Bitesize’ sessions can help you start to make positive changes through techniques that you can put into practice straight away. These sessions can benefit doctors, medical students and family members alike.

Mental Health Foundation

“Prevention is at the heart of what we do. Our vision is good mental health for all.  Our mission is to help people understand, protect and sustain their mental health. “

National Bereavement Service

Free helpline 0800 0246 121 connecting people to straightforward information and guidance about all aspects of bereavement. They provide people with answers to their questions or concerns so they are clear on the way forward through this difficult time in their life.

NHS Practitioner Health: Events Calendar

A calendar of upcoming wellbeing events, including webinars, meetings, podcasts and more. All events are available freely to NHS staff, and are delivered by experts in their field. 

OCD-UK – support to understand and manage OCD

Information plays an important role in helping people understand and manage Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. OCD-UK is a national charity run by, and for, people with OCD. The organisation aims to educate, offer hope, and support people at every stage of their journey: through the difficult times, right through to recovery and everything in between. The charity is service-user led; everyone involved has personal experience of OCD, either directly or through a loved one. Based on these experiences, OCD-UK provides advice, information and support services for those affected by OCD. This includes a support line, online resources and forums, and online support groups. Please note: OCD-UK’s support services are only available from Monday to Friday, and for UK residents.

Visit the website.

Call the support line on 01332 588112  Lines are open from 9am – 12pm, Monday to Friday.

PANDAS Foundation

PANDAS Foundation vision is to support every individual with pre (antenatal), postnatal depression or postnatal psychosis in England, Wales and Scotland. We campaign to raise awareness and remove the stigma. We provide our PANDAS Help Line, Support Groups offer online advice to all and much more. 

Refuge: National Domestic Abuse Helpline

Helpline for survivors of domestic abuse – Telephone: 0808 2000 247

Relate

Providing highly trained counsellors to support relationships via telephone and webcam counselling, and WebChat services. 

Samaritans Keyworker Helplines

During the Covid-19 pandemic, Samaritans launched free, confidential support helplines for health and social care workers and volunteers in England and Wales. To access this support line, call 0800 069 6222. Changes to Samaritans’ health and social care workers support helplines As of July 2022, changes will come to the England Staff Support Line provided by the Samaritans: Calls will go through to a recorded message, which will transfer staff to the core Samaritans helpline until January 2023.  From January 2023 callers will hear a new recording informing them that this number is no longer operational. This recording will last forever. There will be individual call plans for those who are frequent callers to the helpline. Even though the dedicated helpline number has closed, Samaritans is still here to support health and social care workers in England. Staff can access the main Samaritans support line if and when they need it, by calling 116 123. There is also still a comprehensive package of health and wellbeing support in place for NHS and social care staff. This includes access to a 24hr text service, free self-help apps, training, coaching and guidance for teams and leaders, as well as the KeepingWell NCL Hubs. Staff can still seek specific support by texting FRONTLINE to 85258 for support 24/7. The wide range of health and wellbeing initiatives available to NHS staff can be accessed via NHS England » Supporting our NHS people.

Shout

Shout is the UK’s first 24/7 text service, free on all major mobile networks, for anyone in crisis anytime, anywhere. It’s a place to go if you’re struggling to cope and you need immediate help. Text: 85258, Website: https://www.giveusashout.org/

Supporting children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing

Government guidance for parents/carers on supporting the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people during this time, including helplines and websites for children and young people to use.

Switchboard LGBT+ Helpline

A safe space offering resources, online support and referral services for anyone to discuss anything, including sexuality, gender, identity, sexual health and emotional wellbeing. 

The Care Workers Strategy: funding, crisis grants and wellbeing support for care workers

The Care Workers Charity is an organisation that support care workers in a variety of ways. They provide: Emergency funding for care workers who have suffered a drop in income due to COVID-19, or who need financial support because of a COVID-related circumstance Crisis Grant for care workers who have experienced a recent change in circumstance resulting in a significant financial impact. Mental health and wellbeing programme offering care workers a series of up to ten support sessions with a qualified therapist, delivered by Red Umbrella.

Career support for Primary Care

Structured Career Pathways for dentists and the whole dental team.

Link to resource:
Visit the College of General Dentistry website

Topic: Career
Audience: Primary Care; dentists
Who is this for: Individuals
Resource format: Various

Are you a GP, a hospital doctor or a professional in a demanding job?

Most of us went into our profession to improve people’s lives, and have an interesting and varied career. After studying for what seemed like a lifetime, we finally qualified and were let loose into the world of work.

Fast forward several years. We’ve done hours and hours on the job, coped with sleepless nights, difficult colleagues, traumatic situations and impossible exams. But our careers can be as demanding as they are rewarding, and navigating the high stress culture at work leaves many of us feeling overwhelmed and exhausted.

You may feel like a frog in boiling water. Things have heated up so slowly that you didn’t notice the extra-long days becoming the norm, you don’t question the loss of control over your work and you’re used to constantly being on the edge of burnout – until you reach boiling point.

Let’s face it, frogs generally have only two options – stay and be boiled alive, or jump out of the pan. Happily, you are not a frog. You have many more options, choices and control than you think.

That’s where this podcast comes in. It is possible to be master of your own destiny, to craft your job and career so that you can thrive even in the most difficult of situations. There are simple changes that you can make which will make a huge difference to your stress levels, your resilience and productivity and help you enjoy life again.

Link to resource:
Listen to the You Are Not a Frog podcast or explore the Shapes resources for doctors

Topic: Stress
Audience: Primary Care; doctors
Who is this for: Individuals
Resource format: Podcast, courses, coaching

The GP Career Support Hub from the NHS aims to help doctors understand which options are available to them at different stages in their career.

Link to resource:
Visit the GP Career Support Hub website.

Topic: Career
Audience: Primary Care; GPs
Who is this for: Individuals
Resource format: Various

If you feel stuck in a rut, unable to progress, or have circumstances that are impacting on your career, Career Coaching may be able to help.

Coaching is not advice, and it doesn’t tell you what to do, but is about working collaboratively with you to identify steps and aspirations.

Link to resource:
Find more information to help determine whether Career Coaching would benefit you.

If you are a Royal College of Nursing (RCN) member, you can book a coaching session by contacting the advice team.  

Topic: Career
Audience: Primary Care; nursing staff
Who is this for: Individuals
Resource format: Coachin

Whatever you want from your career in pharmacy, you can find tools, connections and knowledge to help you achieve it. From free one-to-one support sessions, mentoring to general advice for pharmacists.

Link to resource:
Visit the Royal Pharmaceutical Society website.

Topic: Career
Audience: Primary Care; pharmacists
Who is this for: Individuals
Resource format: Various

Drug and alcohol addiction

The British Doctors & Dentists Group is a mutual/self-help group of doctors and dentists who are recovering, or wish to recover, from chemical addiction – alcohol and/or drugs (prescription and non-prescription) – and other behavioural addictions.

Link to resource: 
Visit the British Doctors and Dentists Group website

Topic: Addiction
Audience: Primary Care; doctors and dentists
Who is this for: Individuals
Resource format: In-person and online meetings

The Sick Doctors Trust was established in 1996 by a group of doctors who were themselves recovering from addictions and were concerned at the lack of effective arrangements for helping others who found themselves in difficulty as a result of alcohol or drug use.

Access this resource:
Call the support line on 0370 444 5163

Visit the Sick Doctors Trust website

Topic: Addiction
Audience: Primary Care, doctors
Who is this for: Individuals
Resource format: Support line

Leadership resources

Sign up to the Active Practice Charter and join the national network of practices making positive changes in their surgeries to boost staff and patient wellbeing.

Link to resource:
Sign up your practice to the Active Practice Charter.

Topic: Social
Audience: Primary Care; practice managers
Who is this for: Teams, organisations
Resource format: Webpage

The aim of this module is to offer general practitioners and practice managers practical approaches to protecting staff wellbeing, and to inspire the development of healthy workplaces.

Link to resource:
Visit the RCGP eLearning Hub.

Topic: Social
Audience: Primary Care; practice managers
Who is this for: Teams, organisations
Resource format: E-Learning

Mindfulness and wellbeing

This wellbeing support service is open to all doctors and medical students (regardless of BMA membership). This counselling service is provided through the BMA’s accredited provider, Health Assured. All counsellors are members of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) and bound by strict codes of confidentiality. The counsellors are here to help you deal with a variety of issues, both personal and work-related.

By seeking constructive help, you may identify ways of addressing the root causes of your concerns and develop strategies to reduce the impact of the consequences. The services are confidential and free of charge.

These are not emergency services. If you require urgent assistance, please contact your GP, or visit your local A&E department. 

Link to resource:
Visit the BMA website for more details about the counselling service

Contact the BMA to request access to a counsellor:

By phone: call 0330 123 1245 (24 hours a day, seven days a week)

Online: visit the Health Assured online portal and request support via the ‘contact us’ form or the live chat button, stating ‘BMA’ as your organisation.

How it works

Following a triage, you can access in-the-moment support or be referred for a structured course of up to six sessions with a counsellor.

The counselling service is confidential. All counsellors are members of the BACP and are bound by strict codes of confidentiality. 

Topic: Mental health
Audience: Primary Care; doctors; medical students
Who is this for: Individuals
Resource format: Counselling

In this episode of the Primary Care London podcast, host Munir Adam speaks with Dr Nirja Joshi about stress and wellness in the workplace. 

Individually and collectively, we all need to understand stress and wellbeing better so that we can contribute to making our workplaces more enjoyable, improve productivity and prevent burnout. This episode covers topics such as what we mean by stress, wellbeing and burnout; how to recognise stress; why it’s so common; what strategies we can employ at work; what changes we can make ourselves, and where to turn for help.

The Primary Care London podcast is produced by the North East London Training Hubs, and its content is relevant for all Primary Care clinical staff. However, this particular episode is relevant for anyone working within the NHS.

Link to resource
Listen to the podcast episode.

Topic: Coping with stress
Audience: Primary Care; health professionals
Who is this for: Individuals; teams
Resource format: Podcast

These mindfulness based videos have been created for nursing staff, but could benefit anyone. The six videos each cover a different stage of your day, from starting your day to arriving home. Each video provides practical techniques which you can put into practice.

Link to resource:
Watch the videos.

Topic: Mindfulness
Audience: Primary Care; nursing staff; social care staff
Who is this for: Individuals
Resource format: Video