Start by asking your GP, health visitor or other health or social care professional. They may arrange for you to see a GP-based Family Therapist if one is available or, if appropriate, refer you to another family therapy service in your area. Some public services accept self-referrals from families seeking help, as well as referrals from GPs and other professionals. Ask your GP’s surgery for contact details.
Many Family Therapists work in private practice. Access the AFT Directory of Family and Systemic Psychotherapists - a directory of AFT members in private practice who are fully qualified and eligible to register as accredited Family and Systemic Psychotherapists with the United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP). This Directory is currently under development. If you are unable to find a member offering private practice in your area, you may wish to download a temporary list in PDF format of AFT members offering private practice. Some independent and non-statutory services also employ Family Therapists.
Details of accredited Family and Systemic Psychotherapists working independently in your area may also be found on the UKCP website at www.psychotherapy.org.uk, or by calling the UKCP on 020 7014 9955. On the Find a Therapist page please choose under type of therapy offered, "Family and Systemic Psychotherapist" .
AFT is aware that some practitioners with foundation training are describing themselves as Family Therapists, and the services employing them are using the term Family Therapy. While there is at present no legal obstacle to them doing so, this may have implications for clinical governance and Complaints within NHS Trusts and other employers. AFT is concerned that families and others seeking therapy may be under the impression they are working with a professional who is fully trained and qualified in systemic family psychotherapy when they are not.
Practitioners entering into an AFT accredited systemic family therapy clinical training course already have a prior professional qualification in a health and social care related profession, so come into the field with a great deal of experience in working with vulnerable children, young people, adults and their families. The training to become a fully qualified systemic family therapist takes four years and only then are practitioners eligible for registration with the UKCP (UK Council for Psychotherapy) and to use the title 'Family and Systemic Psychotherapist'. Details of fully qualified and accredited Family and Systemic Psychotherapists may a be found on the UKCP website at www.psychotherapy.org.uk, or by calling the UKCP on 020 7014 9955