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Health & Justice Lead Psychologist

Central and North West London NHS Trust
London (Greater)
£91,317 - £104,122 Per annum inc. Inner HCAS pro rata
Closing date
27 Feb 2024

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Clinical, Counselling, Forensic
Contract Type
Part Time, Permanent, Job Share

Main area Health and Justice
Grade NHS AfC: Band 8d
Contract Permanent
Hours Part time / Job share / 22.5 hours per week
Site Gordon Hospital
Town London 
Salary £91,317 - £104,122 Per annum inc. Inner HCAS pro rata
Closing 27/02/2024 23:59
Interview date 15/03/2024

Job overview

Health & Justice services operate in prisons, youth custody, community forensic teams & low secure hospital, probation and in courts and police stations across a large geographical patch stretching from Milton Keynes in Buckinghamshire, through London, Surrey and Kent.

This is an exciting opportunity to job share our lead psychologist role, the post is for three days a week, the other postholder also has three days in post. You will be joining an expanding service which already has a workforce of over 100 psychology and psychological therapy staff, including but not restricted to consultant psychologists, psychological therapists and psychologists, arts therapists, trainees and assistant psychologists.

The person we are looking for will be an experienced senior clinician with the capacity to lead diverse services covering Mental Health provision in prisons, psychological pathways and Offender Personality Disorder (OPD) services. They will have a passion both for clinical work with the most vulnerable in society and forensic experience, demonstrating an ability to work with and support high risk individuals and circumstances. They will have excellent supervisory and leadership skills, showing the ability to develop clinical skills in others. They will demonstrate a high-level understanding of service development and an aptitude for developing efficient and high-quality services. 

Main duties of the job

In terms of characteristics we are hoping to find someone enthusiastic, supportive and passionate about the work. They must be able to work autonomously and to manage their own time and a range of different priorities to best meet the needs of the service.

Professional and clinical supervision for senior psychologists & psychological therapists across the directorate.

Professional leadership for all psychology & psychological therapy services.

Operational leadership & management of OPD services.

Leadership of the Mental Health Review Group in Health & Justice.

Active contribution to Senior Management Team and governance and development across the Directorate.

Health & Justice operates with  a Senior Manager on call Rota and this role will be part of the rota.

Working for our organisation

Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust is a Top Employer Award Winner. Our Health & Justice motto is “Caring NOT Judging” so by working in partnership with the criminal justice system and other agencies, we provide responsive, dependable and high-quality primary care mental health, intellectual disability, offender personality disorder and substance misuse services to those who may have offended and those at risk of offending in the diverse communities we serve.

Our psychological professions have a strong sense of leadership and a distinct professional identity. There is an emphasis on Continuing Professional Development and developing your skills in line with your career progression goals. As a Trust, we are committed to staff development.  We especially welcome applications from candidates with the valuable experience of the diverse social and cultural communities the Trust serves as we are seeking to ensure our psychology staffing has greater diversity and better represents local communities.  The successful candidate will be supported to develop their career and flourish as a valued member of the psychology staff group.  There are also a number of support systems within the Trust including staff peer networks. 

As an NHS Trust we strongly encourage and support vaccination as this remains the best way to protect yourself, your family, your colleagues and of course patients and service users when working on our healthcare settings.

Detailed job description and main responsibilities

This role requires liaison with a large and diverse range of service users and stakeholders and the ability to communicate sensitively and with an astute awareness of clinical, risk, governance, business and commissioning priorities. The post-holder will be a part of the Senior Management Team of Health & Justice and hold operational responsibility for the OPD services and therefore must demonstrate an understanding of tendering, procurement, recruitment, governance and contract management. 

Person specification

Training & Qualifications

Essential criteria

  • Post-graduate doctoral level training in clinical, counselling or forensic psychology including specifically models of psychopathology, clinical psychometrics and neuropsychology, two or more distinct psychological therapies and lifespan developmental psychology.
  • Full registration with HCPC as a practitioner psychologist Training in supervision of psychological practice

Desirable criteria

  • Post-doctoral training in one or more additional specialised areas of psychological practice.
  • Accreditation in one or more additional specialised areas of psychological practice.
  • Attendance at relevant management training courses and event.
  • Training and / or qualifications in Leadership

Knowledge & Skills

Essential criteria

  • Highly developed knowledge of the theory and practice of specialised psychological therapies in specific difficult to treat groups (e.g. personality disorder dual diagnoses, people with additional disabilities and severely challenging behaviours etc.)
  • Doctoral level knowledge of psychology including highly developed knowledge of lifespan developmental psychology, models of psychopathology, clinical psychometrics and neuropsychology, and two or more distinct psychological therapies.
  • Skills in the use of complex methods of psychological assessment intervention and management frequently requiring sustained and intense concentration.
  • A high level ability to communicate effectively at both a written and oral level complex, highly technical and clinically sensitive information to clients, their families, carers and a wide range of lay and professional persons within and outside the NHS.
  • Skills in providing consultation to other professional and non-professional groups.
  • Knowledge and skills of risk assessment and ability to perform a clinical risk assessment.
  • Experience of functioning at a senior consultant level
  • Doctoral level knowledge of research design and methodology, including complex multivariate data analysis as practiced within the field of clinical psychology.
  • Knowledge of legislation and its implications for both clinical practice and professional management in relation to the client group and mental health
  • Evidence of continuing professional development as recommended by the BPS and required to maintain HCPC registration.
  • Formal training in supervision of other psychologists.
  • Skills in budgetary management and implementation of high quality governance processes.
  • Awareness of trauma informed practice and the skills to develop trauma informed systems.
  • Skills in budgetary management and implementation of high quality governance processes.

Desirable criteria

  • Highly developed knowledge of the theory and practice of highly specialised psychological therapies


Essential criteria

  • Substantial assessed experience of working as a qualified practitioner psychologist, including significant post qualification experience within the designated specialty where the post is located.
  • Experience of working with a wide variety of client groups, across the whole life course and presenting with the full range of clinical severity across the full range of care settings including outpatient, community, primary care, in-patient and residential care settings including maintaining a high degree of professionalism in the face of highly emotive and distressing problems, verbal abuse and the threat of physical abuse.
  • Experience of leading and providing psychological services to diverse communities that are culturally competent and anti-discriminatory
  • Experience of exercising full clinical responsibility for clients’ psychological care and treatment, both as a professionally qualified care co-ordinator and also within the context of a multi-disciplinary care plan.
  • Experience of teaching, training and/or professional and clinical supervision.
  • Experience of working in prisons or secure settings.
  • Experience of working with those with offending histories, high risk behaviours and complex clinical presentations
  • Experience of working with commissioners and other external partners and stakeholders.
  • Experience of leading service developments

Desirable criteria

  • Experience of professional management of qualified and pre-qualified clinical psychologists.
  • Experience of multi-professional management of teams or services within the designated specialty.
  • Experience of representing the profession in local policy forums.
  • Experience of the application of psychology in different cultural contexts.
  • Experience of designing and implementing research projects.
  • Experience of working with or in Offender Personality Disorder (OPD) pathway services.


Essential criteria

  • Enthusiasm for a broad range of psychological phenomena, an interest in models of service delivery, and an ability to articulate the value added by clinical psychology services within the context of multi-disciplinary mental health services.
  • Ability to contain and work with organisational stress and ability to ‘hold’ the stress of others. Ability to withstand high levels of emotionally charged situations.
  • Ability to encourage, inspire and develop others to their full potential. Flexible and adaptable attitude to work tasks.
  • Ability to generate ideas, innovate and complete a complex range of tasks in an autonomous manner demonstrating excellent ability to prioritise and time manage.

Desirable criteria

  • A commitment to the evaluation of services, enthusiasm for both multi-professional and uni-professional audit, and a wish to continue to develop expertise in the service area. Ability to demonstrate leadership and management skills.


Essential criteria

  • Professional values that align with those of the NHS, CNWL and Psychological Professions
  • Ability to identify, provide and promote appropriate means of support to carers and staff exposed to highly distressing situations and severely challenging behaviours.
  • Ability to identify, and employ, as appropriate, clinical governance mechanisms for the support and maintenance of clinical practice in the face of regular exposure to highly emotive material and challenging behaviour.
  • Ability to develop and use complex multi-media materials for presentations in public, professional and academic settings.
  • Ability to articulate and interpret clearly the role of the profession of clinical psychology based upon a good understanding of the framework of government and national professional policy.
  • Willingness and ability to travel across sites to reach numerous geographical locations of OC and OPD services. Ability to obtain and maintain appropriate security vetting and clearance to work in secure settings.

Desirable criteria

  • Experience of working within a multicultural framework. Record of having published in either peer reviewed or academic or professional journals and/or books.

CNWL (Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust) has almost 8,000 staff providing integrated healthcare to a third of London's population, Milton Keynes and areas beyond.  We involve service users, carers, the public, staff and partner organisations in the way that we are run. 

Our catchment area spans diverse communities, with over 100 first languages spoken. It contains areas of great affluence as well as areas of much deprivation.  We are committed to providing services that meet the needs of the people who use them, and we actively encourage involvement from local people who can help make a difference.  We’re proud of our diversity and we continue to undertake new initiatives to advance equality for LGBT+, BME and people with disabilities to promote good relations and understanding between our staff.

We are recognised locally, nationally and internationally for providing high quality, innovative healthcare. We aim to employ only the best people, and our experts are frequently called upon to contribute to national health strategy and policy, and many models of our care have been adapted for use in other countries.

We offer a generous relocation package (subject to eligibility assessment) and flexible working options, including bank assignments for most roles.  See attached Staff Reward and Wellbeing Handbook detailing our benefits, discounts and wellbeing initiatives for staff.

Become part of our team. We care for you as much as you care for others.

CNWL NHS Foundation Trust are committed to safeguarding all children and vulnerable adults and expect all staff and volunteers to share this commitment.  We follow safe recruitment practices to protect children and vulnerable adults.

Due to the high response levels we receive for some vacancies, we may expire any of them prior to the advertised closing date and advise you to submit your application as soon as possible. 

Our Agenda for Change employment contracts are subject to a contractual 13 week probationary period.

If you are offered a job, information will be transferred into the national NHS Electronic Staff Records system.

Applicant requirements

You must have appropriate UK professional registration.

This post is subject to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 (Amendment) (England and Wales) Order 2020 and it will be necessary for a submission for Disclosure to be made to the Disclosure and Barring Service.

Documents to download

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