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Step-by-step guide to Mental Health Panel referrals

Support for your psychological wellbeing

If a Vitality GP has referred you to our Mental Health Panel, this page explains what happens next and some things you need to remember. You can also find out more about our Mental Health Panel and what to do if you change your mind.

Vitality GP

What happens next?

  1. The Vitality GP will pass your details to our dedicated specialist care team who will contact you to arrange a telephone assessment with a Registered Mental Health Nurse via our Mental Health Panel. We recommend setting aside up to 30 minutes for this and making sure that you’re in a quiet space where you’re able to answer questions and discuss your symptoms and/or condition.
  2. Following the assessment, the nurse will recommend the most appropriate treatment for your specific needs. This could be one or more of the following range of clinically effective treatments:
    - Self-help
    - Guided online therapy
    - Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
    - Counselling
  3. If you’re referred for a face-to-face assessment or treatment sessions, our Mental Health Panel will refer you to a therapist close to either your home or work.
  4. The Mental Health Panel will manage your claim to make sure eligible treatment is authorised quickly so you can focus on recovery. They’ll also support your transfer back to the NHS if required.
  5. We’ll pay for eligible treatment in full although you will need to pay any excess that applies to your plan. We’ll also pay the panel directly (up to any limit on your plan). If we need to discuss your claim or any aspect of your cover, we’ll contact you.

Important things to remember

  1. If you’re on a Corporate Healthcare plan, visit the Member Zone and check that you have Psychiatric Cover included on your plan. Using our Mental Health Panel will count as a claim and treatment will be deducted from your out-patient psychiatric benefit.
  2. To see if you have an excess on your plan check your membership certificate. You can find this with your plan documents in the ‘Notifications’ section of the Member Zone.
  3. Sometimes, we may need some more information or to ask your NHS GP to complete a claim form. If this is the case, we’ll contact you as soon as possible and once we’ve received the claim form, we’ll usually let you know our decision within two working days.
  4. Making a claim may affect your renewal premium. You can find out more information on how this may affect you by viewing your plan documents in the 'Notifications' section of the Member Zone.

If you change your mind

If you change your mind about using our Mental Health Panel, please let the nurse know when they call.

If you would prefer to see a therapist outside the panel

  1. You’ll need to ask your NHS GP for a referral.
  2. Then you’ll need to contact us to check your chosen therapist is recognised by us and to get your claim approved.
  3. If you require further sessions after your initial authorised number, you will need to contact us for authorisation.

Who are the Mental Health Panel?

Our Mental Health Panel are a nationwide network of accredited therapists. They deliver a range of clinically effective treatments including counselling and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT).

Counselling is a talking therapy most suited to helping people cope with specific life events such as relationship issues, bereavement, infertility or serious illness.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is another kind of talking therapy where a therapist will help you to think more positively about your life and change unhelpful patterns of behaviour. It’s particularly effective for depression, anxiety, panic attacks, phobias, obsessive compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and some eating disorders.

Get the most from your face-to-face appointment with our quick tips

Arrive 10 minutes before your appointment time.

Take along your diary to make any further appointments.

If you need to cancel your appointment you need to give the clinic 24 hours’ notice or you will be charged for the session.

Your referral may be closed if you don’t attend a session or need to reschedule a session more than twice.