Hypnosis And The NHS

Hypnotherapy In The NHS – NHSTA

Statement (from their website)

Hypnotherapy is the use of hypnosis for treating such conditions as addictions, anxiety, depression, obesity, irritable bowel syndrome, phobias, pain control, natural- pain free birthing and stress.

Hypnotherapy is believed to have begun in the eighteenth century with the work of the Austrian physician, Franz Anton Mesmer. Mesmer utilized the ethereal sounds of a glass harmonica to assist in producing a trancelike state in the patient, which he used as a curative remedy.

Dismissed as a quack by most of his peers, Mesmer’s work was latched on to by a Scottish physician named John Braid, who came up with the term hypnosis after the Greek God ‘Hypnos’.

Hypnosis is not a state of sleep but a state of relaxation varying from light to deep. Tests have shown that a person is neither unconscious, nor asleep. Tests have shown that a person in deep hypnosis is in a state of deep relaxation and engaged in normal mental activity.

The hypnotherapist induces this state by various methods, including eye fixation, progressive relaxation and imagery. Once the patient is in this state the therapist uses suggestion, which is aimed at influencing behaviour and relieving symptoms.

People with personality disorders, psychosis and certain neurological disorders such as epilepsy should avoid hypnotherapy as there is some evidence to suggest that it can precipitate onset of episodes of these disorders.

Information for the public – NHSTA Statement (from their website)

Working in partnership with Complementary alternatives, an online magazine focused on healthy living, the NHSTA is making its database of complementary therapists available to the public, please visit www.nhstadirectory.org

Though the availability of complementary therapy via the NHS is now beginning to make headlines in the newspapers, it does not necessarily mean that all doctors are willing to prescribe complementary medicine, at the end of the day the decision to prescribe is still a matter for clinical judgement of your GP, and even if they are willing, not all Primary Care Trusts presently have funding provisions dedicated to complementary medicine.

In some cases, this is simply a question of lack of resources and, in other cases, it is a question of an unwillingness on the part of the Primary Care Trust to provide complementary therapy.

Any member of the public who is encountering difficulties in obtaining complementary therapy via the NHS and who would like to bring this problem to the notice of their Primary Care Trust, should write to the Patient Advice and Liaison Co-ordinator (PAL) at the Primary Care Trust.

The role of PAL is a new one. The PALs have been created to act as an interface between the public and the boards of the Primary Care Trusts responsible for healthcare in their area. If enough members of the public write on the subject, this will help the Boards of the Trusts become more aware of the true level of demand and may lead to funding being made available where hitherto it was not.

It would also be appropriate for members of the public to write to the lay member of their local Primary Care Trust. The lay member is an ordinary member of the public, whose purpose is to represent the local population.

Information on your local Primary Care Trust is available via your GP, or your local Hospital Trust website

Example Patient Letter For PCT Requesting Hypnotherapy (Download in Word Format)

Example Patient Letter For PCT Requesting Hypnotherapy (Download in PDF Format)


Professional Registrations

General Hypnotherapy Register General Hypnotherapy Standards Council The NHSTA Directory Association for Neuro Linguistic Programming