What is Clinical Health Psychology?

Clinical Health Psychology is a specialism within Clinical Psychology, focusing on the planning and delivery of interventions to affect positive change and improve coping in relation to physical health problems or illness.

Who we are

Our team is made up of psychological practitioners who specialise in the assessment and treatment of psychological difficulties (e.g. coping difficulties; emotional difficulties; and difficulties coming to terms with the situation faced), that can all often be experienced when living with ill health or chronic physical health problems, adding to the disability experienced.

Where we provide services

As a clinical department of Aintree University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, we currently provide specialist clinical input into a variety of medical services, across the hospital Trust. The majority of our services being delivered within the hospital or within community clinics linked to Aintree Hospital services.

Additionally, we also provide and support a range of specialist community-based services in partnership with other local Acute Trusts, CCGs and other clinical (and non-clinical) partners.

What we do

Our aim is to help patients to achieve the best possible medical outcomes in living with and managing their illness or medical condition.

Living with physical health problems and chronic health conditions can not only impact on general well-being but can also commonly affect how people feel and cope with many aspects of life (for example, how they feel about themselves; about work, relationships; their future etc.).

We thus offer a variety of support and treatment options, aimed at helping patients to cope, adjust and manage the many difficulties (both physical and emotional) that can arise when facing serious illness, long term health problems or physical trauma.

We can help people move forward in the face of such problems by providing one-to-one treatments, family sessions, group treatments, telephone support or by working closely with the medical teams, providing their medical care.

We also work closely with medical teams, supporting them in their medical care of patients.

The specialist services we provide includes the following:

  • Specialist assessments and clinical opinion to inform diagnosis and treatment planning
  • Psychological intervention and  therapies to facilitate improved emotional adjustment (to living with health difficulties or illness faced), reduced stress in the face of illness and improved condition management
  • Cognitive rehabilitation following health event or brain injury
  • Consultation, advice or training to medical teams (to support optimal medical outcomes).

Our Hospital-Based Clinical Services (Aintree Hospital)

Diabetes Psychology Service

Providing specialist assessment and psychological treatments, delivered 1-1 or via community-based groups. Also supporting clinical management on wards, as required.

Behçet's Psychology Service

Supporting enhanced MDT care within 1 of 3 national Behcet’s Disease Centres, through providing specialist assessment and 1-1 psychological treatments and ward-based guidance and care input, as needed.

Nephrology Psychology Services

Providing specialist assessment and psychological treatments, delivered 1-1 or via community-based groups. Also supporting clinical management on wards, as required.

Prosthetic and Wheelchair Psychology Service

Supporting enhanced MDT care within the specialist regional service, providing routine specialist assessment and access to 1-1 and group-based psychological treatments. Ward-based guidance and care input, also provided, as needed.

Stroke Psychology Service

Providing specialist psychological/ neuropsychological input to support diagnosis, MDT management and treatment of cognitive and emotional rehabilitation needs, across the hospital stroke pathway. Involving support and delivery of rehabilitation across ward and outpatient settings (delivering specialist 1-1 treatments and access to group-based interventions).

Respiratory/ Ventilation Psychology Service

Providing specialist ward-based assessments and treatments, to support enhanced ward MDT care; also providing 1-1 out-patient interventions to help condition adjustment and management.

Major Trauma Psychology Service

Providing ward-based specialist psychological input to support diagnosis, MDT management, acute rehabilitation and onward care planning of cognitive and emotional rehabilitation needs, following major trauma ward admission.

Accident & Emergency Medical Psychology Service

Providing specialist psychological assessment, direct patient interventions (1-1), staff consultation and care planning guidance, to support the treatment of acute and complex medical symptoms, found to be affected by psychological factors.

The service focuses on supporting enhanced MDT care planning, management and treatment of patients presenting with complex medical presentations that cannot be fully or adequately medically explained.

Palliative Care Support Service

Providing clinical supervision to the Palliative Care team, supporting their patient care. 

Accessing our hospital-based services

  • Under existing arrangements, our service is able to support patients (and medical teams, in their support of patients), across the medical areas listed above
  • To be referred, patients must be under on-going Aintree Hospital medical Consultant-led care or medical follow-up, (with the  exception of the A&E Psychology service).

Specialist Community Services

Liverpool ESD service for Stroke

We support the Liverpool ESD service for Stroke, providing specialist psychological / neuropsychological input as part of the multi-disciplinary team. Supporting enhanced MDT rehabilitation of stroke patients returning home, following ward discharge. Working in partnership the Royal and Broadgreen Hospitals, in delivering this service across Liverpool.

Ashton, Wigan & Leigh Weight Management Services

Clinically supporting the psychological staff within the multi-disciplinary team, supporting MDT care.

Neurological Alliance Support Services

Providing training and support to Peer Support workers, who support patients following diagnosis of stroke, MS, MND or other neurological long term conditions.

Further General Information

The Department can be contacted directly regarding any enquiries, via Angela Shinner (Medical Secretary/PA):


0151 529 3251 / Fax: 0151 529 3063

Clinical Health Psychology Services

Department of Clinical Psychology

Ferndale Unit

Aintree University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Lower Lane


 L9 7AL