From the Chief Executive, June 2020

The latest from Sarb Bajwa.

I hope that all of our members and your families are keeping well during the current situation, and that reading this magazine gives everyone at least some semblance of normality for a couple of hours.

Ever since the start of the crisis, we have been collating psychological perspectives on coronavirus, and making sure that everyone has access to the psychological guidance and resources that they need. The role of psychology is only going to grow as we move towards the recovery phase of this pandemic, and focus shifts to the disease’s wider impacts.

Those who have suffered with severe Covid-19 will need a significant amount of support as they recover, so I’m delighted that our coordinating group has produced both a guidance document and webinar to help people to incorporate psychology into recovery plans.

It is also unfortunately the case that many people will develop mental health concerns, or see existing ones grow, because of an extended period of uncertainty.

Psychologists are doing a fantastic job making sure that services are still available for people to access, even when we need to make adaptations such as the use of video technology, and we will support you through guidance and relevant professional development.

We will also need to consider the impact that this pandemic will have had on the psychological wellbeing of healthcare staff.

We recently signed a memorandum with the Red Cross to work on support for responders to traumatic events, and I want us to emulate this and work closely with other organisations on providing the best possible support to NHS staff and other key workers following this crisis.

The next issue of The Psychologist will look towards the ‘new normal’ and beyond, and I’m looking forward to reading what perspectives our members have on this, and what they see the more medium-term future looking like.

We will make sure that we’re prepared for it, and do all that we can to encourage policy makers to put good psychological practice and evidence-based psychology at the heart of the choices that are made.

Stay safe, and if you think that there’s something that the BPS can do to support you during this challenging period, please let me know.

-  Sarb Bajwa is Chief Executive of the British Psychological Society.
Contact him at [email protected]

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