Any healthcare professional involved with the patient or family can refer to the service. Referrals can be made by the acute team, primary care or within the specialist palliative care team. Healthcare professionals can refer via the specialist palliative care single point of access (SPOA). When making a referral it is important that healthcare professionals have gained your consent. The referral will include your name, your CHI number, up to date contact details and a little bit of detail about the reason for your referral.
The counseling team work Monday to Friday office hours but would consider an early or later appointment for those who are unable to get away from work.
The counseling service is deeply imbedded within the palliative care team.
Adult counselling service
Counselling allows people to explore conscious and unconscious thoughts to help process issues causing concern or distress during a life limiting illness and pre- bereavement phase. Counselling essentially creates an opportunity for people to gain insight into their feelings, normalize their reactions and develop strategies for coping with the changes an illness brings to people and their families.
Unlike conventional counselling the service offers support, advice and psycho education for those who are facing loss and death as a result of illness. This can support and enable families to understand, increase communication and develop strategies to manage their reactions or feelings such as depression, anxiety, low mood, anger or denial to cope in the pre- bereavement.
The bereavement service creates a safe space for people to ask questions and normalise their bereavement reactions as well as supporting people to work through more complex reactions to their grief. The service is offered to anyone who has a felt need to talk through their bereavement experience. We offer a non- pathologising and person-centred approach to grief work.
Group work is offered for bereaved people. Sharing experiences with others can really help the process of coming to terms with loss and provides support as people make adaptations and consider their own future.
What we do
We are one full time counsellor and one part time counsellor. Once your referral is received, we'd expect to contact you within 3-5 days. Please include name, CHI number and up to date contact details with a little bit of narrative for reason for referral.
We are not an emergency service. If someone is in crisis they must contact their GP or 111 for the mental health team.
Frequently Asked Questions
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How long do I have to wait after a death before receiving bereavement support?
We take a person centered approach and will meet people at their felt point of need, so there is no time scale.
Is the counseling service just for bereavement?
No, the service is there to allow people a space to make sense of what changes are happening physically, explore emotional reactions and make adjustments to life and prepare for death.
Where do I go to go to be seen?
The service has a flexible approach. We run counselling sessions at Victoria Hospice and Queen Margaret Hospital in an area separate to the ward. We can be flexible and would seek to use any local clinic space throughout Fife to see clients. We also offer Near Me Virtual Clinics and offer home visits to those who are too unwell to travel.