The PPN joins up all the psychological professions working in NHS commissioned services or universities in Kent, Surrey and Sussex, with other key stakeholders. It also has close working links with its ‘older sibling,’ the PPN North West. This is so that we can foster collaboration on a regional and national level, promote psychological professions and services, and influence policy and practice within continuously evolving and changing systems, in collaboration with experts by experience.
An important part of this work is to think about the collective ‘we,’ as the multiple psychological professions (of which there are fourteen or so!) don’t tend think about themselves as having a shared identity. Rather, each of the psychological professions has its own core identity, with a unique training route, professional accreditation process, professional body etc.
As we form a stronger, joined-up voice together, an important piece of work is to recognise and celebrate our unique identities and the specific contributions each of the specific psychological profession provide within the Health and Social care sector. We also need to understand what we all have in common within a broader, collective identity as a multi-psychological professional, workforce as a whole.
Interestingly, when we started to explore this core issue at our recent inaugural conference, we realised what a ‘knotty issue’ this is, and how difficult it can be to start this conversation. I was however really struck by the willingness to explore this whole terrain in more depth. There was an interest in envisioning a future where, within a community of psychological practice we would be talking about what unites us rather than what separates us; where we would be able to articulate what our shared values are, while being respectfully aware and curious about our unique identities and contributions.
I am currently liaising with Dave Hearn, Deputy Head of Transformation in Health Education England (and co-convenor of the workshop) about timescales to launch this important conversation as a large-scale, crowdsourcing project.
Please watch this space, updates to follow!
Clinical Programme Manager