The Sloane Court Clinic working in partnership with The Awareness Centre
The Awareness Centre is pleased to be associated with the clinical private psychiatry team at the Sloane Court Clinic in Chelsea. Dr Howells from the Sloane Court Clinic provides private psychiatry for individuals living in South London – Lambeth, Wandsworth and Southwark.
Dr Howells is a very experienced consultant psychiatrist, formerly he was trained at The Maudsley Hospital where he was a consultant psychiatrist in the community and in-patient services for twelve years also.
He is experienced in the treatment of depression, particularly resistant depression, all forms of anxiety including generalised anxiety, panic, OCD, health anxiety and fatigue states. He has a special interest in managing stress and Adjustment Disorders. Other conditions treated by Dr Howells include low distress tolerance, alcohol dependence, bipolar disorder and psychosis. He is skilled in the use of both modern psychotherapies and psychiatric medication, and can provide advice on psychiatric medication including its dosage and side-effects.
The Sloane Court Clinic also provide psychology on site at The Awareness Centre in Clapham.
What is Psychiatry and what happens in a consultation?
A psychiatrist is a doctor who specialises in mental health problems and is trained to deal with the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of mental and emotional disorders. A consultant psychiatrist is a doctor who has reached a senior position in terms of qualifications, treating people, training other doctors and helping to organize and run services (see Royal College of Psychiatrists).
Individuals undergo an initial psychiatric assessment in which the history is taken of the problem in relation to their current life and commitments, as well as more developmentally to look at the relevance of the experience of growing up and other life experience.
Due emphasis is placed on excluding any physical contribution to the presentation and/or the presence of any aggravating factors such as the use of alcohol or substances. Where relevant the physical evaluation will include obtaining a set of screening blood tests to exclude a biochemical, endocrine or other disorder.
The presenting situation is formulated and discussed with the person. A frequent presentation is that in which a broadly emotionally healthy person gets overwhelmed by life pressures, with the presenting symptoms of anxiety, depressive mood change and/or emotionality – an essentially normal reaction to ongoing stress – what is called an Adjustment Disorder of which bereavement is a good example. Advice is given on the range of treatments available and their pros and cons.
Ample time is made available for the discussion of the presenting symptoms and considerable emphasis is put on explaining the nature of the assessment and treatment process, whether purely psychiatric / pharmacological, or involving psychological treatment too. Ongoing treatment, monitoring and supervision are undertaken. An aspect of this, where relevant, is seeing the spouse, family or carer of the presenting individual.
Treatment is generally of the ‘outpatient’ type, though when necessary inpatient treatment can be arranged, as can treatment with non-statutory organizations like AA, or with other community based statutory or non-statutory health organizations. We have very close working relationships with a large group of psychiatrists, psychologists, counsellors and other professionals working independently and also within the National Health Service and when necessary can refer individuals to such colleagues for specific treatments that we do not presently provide. Eating disorders is a current example.
Urgent appointments are generally available, and telephone access to staff can be arranged between appointments where this is needed. Generally face-to-face contact is found to be better in most circumstances.
Prescriptions can be arranged for our patients through the clinic or through an individual’s family doctor. Dr Howells and colleagues attend courses on up-to-date psychiatric prescribing and psychotherapies as part of their continuing professional development.