How it works

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Who are we and what do we do?

Sussex Voices Clinic aims to improve understandings of voice-hearing experiences and enhance the effectiveness of therapy. It crosses diagnostic and service boundaries to improve access to innovative evidence-based therapies for patients distressed by hearing voices.

The clinic is available to patients within some of the clinical services offered by Sussex Partnership Trust: four Assessment & Treatment Services (Adur, Arun & Worthing; Eastbourne;  Western and High Weald, Lewes & Havens); an Early Intervention in Psychosis Service (Hailsham); and a Children & Young People Service (Hailsham). All patients who come to the clinic are offered assessment and access to brief forms of psychological therapy informed by the evidence-base and the principles of Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT). 

Patients receiving therapy will continue to receive their usual care and will also be given the opportunity to find out about and take part in research studies to help improve the quality of service we offer.

Hear from people who have used the Voices Clinic:

  • It was nice to speak to someone who listened and understood       
  • I really enjoyed the clinic and think it should be more widely available to those who need it 
  • I feel 100% better now 
  • (It was) a massive help 

 

Who works in the clinic? 

The clinic was established by Mark Hayward – an experienced therapist who works in the Research Department at Sussex Partnership Trust. Interventions are delivered by therapists working in our clinical teams who we train and supervise. The clinic is supported by dedicated research assistants; Hazel Frost, Hazel Ashment and Edward Harvey.

Dr Mark Hayward

I qualified as a Clinical Psychologist in 2001 and have practiced clinically within NHS services for people with severe and enduring mental health problems over the past 20 years. My current interest in education and research has two outlets: teaching on undergraduate and postgraduate courses at the University of Sussex where I am an Honorary Senior Research Fellow; and developing the strategy for research within Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust where I am the Director of Research.  

 

My research activities have focussed primarily on the exploration of voice hearing within relational frameworks – acknowledging the voice as an interpersonal ‘other’ and developing new forms of individual and group therapy that seek to facilitate acceptance of self and voices through the use of assertiveness and mindfulness training. I am passionate about increasing access to evidence-based therapies for patients distressed by hearing voices and created the Sussex Voices Clinic to make a real difference in this respect.