The Scientific Credibility Of NHS Talking Therapies

Taxonomy is at the heart of the scientific enterprise, different  treatments, for different phenomenon. But NHS Talking Therapies applies no reliable categorisation of patient difficulties. The Service thus lacks scientific credibility. 

But where is the public accountability? We rightly insist that schools are independently evaluated (Ofsted) so that parents know what they can expect from their child’s attendance at a particular school.We are concerned at any possible failings in the inspection body, with a recent recommendation that it ought to be complemented with another body the Care Quality Commission (CQC). However for the biggest provider of psychological treatment, NHS Talking therapies there is no independent inspection at all. Are those seeking help with mental health difficulties less important than children?


There is at least a case to answer with NHS Talking Therapies. Drew et al (2021 ) have demonstrated the factory-like quality of NHS Talking Therapies.De facto the therapists on the production line are given carte blanche to do what they want, provided the necessary paperwork, PH-9, GAD-7 and ICD-10 codes are completed. Should we as a Society be buying these wares at a cost of £750 million per year?


Most of what makes us human: consciousness, morals, values, meaning is outside the cause and effect world of science. Without an infusion from this level, psychological therapy is reduced to a production line. This applies not only to the ministrations of the therapists but also to those with responsibility for the Service, ultimately the NHS and politicians. Lip service is paid to a duty of care.


Dr Mike Scott