Assistant Psychologist in Diabetes

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Assistant Psychologist in Diabetes

Post by metanoia01 » Tue Feb 27, 2018 9:02 pm

Hi, (I hope I am posting this in the correct place)

I have recently just started as a AP (NHS) in Diabetes care. I was essentially hired for a project that employs telephone qualitative interviews to explore why patients don't attend structured diabetes educational programmes. I have a few questions:

1) Does this sound like relevant experience to the Clinical Psych doctorate?
2) I feel like I want some experience with psychology assessments/formulations, even just shadowing might be good. How do I approach my supervisor about this.
3) I sometimes find that I don't have much to do - Anyone have possible ideas of things I could take on to make myself useful in the department. Maybe someone works in Diabetes care (or with other long term conditions) and can share some ideas of useful things to do i.e. a useful database, group etc. I don't like the feeling of being unproductive..

Thanks for the help :)

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Re: Assistant Psychologist in Diabetes

Post by persephone56 » Wed Feb 28, 2018 11:04 am

Clinical health psychology is a huge field, and diabetes very much falls under that umbrella. People with diabetes can have a high rate of mental health concerns including depression and eating disorders, so your experience would certainly be relevant. As with anything, it's what you make of it. Qualitative interviews give you an opportunity to explore the area a little bit with service users. In my limited experience, there can be a bit of a chasm between services users and clinicians in the area, which is presumably part of the rationale for the project you're working on. That could be something that is useful to try and understand during your interviews (depending on if you have the scope, and assuming your supervisor agrees that it would be appropriate).

Regarding shadowing, just ask! If you can contribute in any meaningful way that lessens their workload (e.g. assisting with report writing, writing progress notes, etc), they'll probably be delighted. If your supervisor is a CP, they're well aware that you're probably thinking about your learning in regards to progressing to the doctorate, and they'll likely be happy to facilitate that.

As for feeling unproductive, that may be something to discuss in supervision to explore what other things you could be doing. Are there already groups running that you could assist with? You could shadow other clinicians to get a greater understanding of the role of the MDT in diabetes care, perhaps.

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