How to make a professional referral

Most of our patients self-refer; however, Primary Health Care Professionals can refer patients to our service on their behalf, by completing the referral form below.

Please see Conditions we treat below, showing the problems NHS Oxfordshire Talking Therapies can help with.

If you are uncertain if NHS Oxfordshire Talking Therapies is the right service for your patient, contact us on 01865 901 222 and ask to speak to the Day Supervisor, to discuss the case.

Referral criteria

What we help with

NHS Oxfordshire Talking Therapies is a service provided by of Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust.

We offer evidence-based psychological treatments to people experiencing common mental health problems such as depression or anxiety disorders, using a stepped care model. 

We also work with people who are experiencing difficulties or struggling to manage Long Term Health Condition(s).

Who we don’t support

NHS Oxfordshire Talking Therapies is unable to meet the needs of people who have severe and enduring mental health problems like Schizophrenia, Bipolar Disorder, Personality Disorders or Psychosis.

Accessing NHS Oxfordshire Talking Therapies

In accordance to NICE Guidelines, most people accessing NHS Oxfordshire Talking Therapies will be offered individual or group Cognitive Behavioural Therapy but we also routinely offer other psychological interventions such as Counselling for Depression, Mindfulness for Depression, Interpersonal Therapy (IPT), Behavioural Couples Therapy, Insomnia Support and Eye-Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing Therapy (EMDR).

Any adult who is registered with a Oxfordshire GP surgery, can be referred to the service. We are able to accept referrals for 16-18 year olds who have been referred by CAMHS Spa.

Conditions we treat

Body Dysmorphic Disorder

This is an anxiety disorder relating to body image. A person might have obsessive worries about perceived flaws in their physical appearance. These may not be visible to others or may appear very slight. They may also develop compulsive behaviours and routines as a way to deal with the worries they have about the way they look. For example, using mirrors excessively or picking their skin.


Depression is low mood that lasts for weeks or months and affects your everyday life. It can cause a variety of symptoms. For example, lasting feelings of unhappiness and hopelessness, feeling tearful, losing interest in things you used to enjoy, tiredness, sleeping badly and poor appetite. The symptoms of depression range from mild to severe.

Generalised anxiety disorder (GAD)

This means having regular or uncontrollable worries about many different things in your everyday life. People with Generalised Anxiety Disorder feel anxious most days and often struggle to remember the last time they felt relaxed. As soon as one anxious thought is resolved, another may appear about a different issue. This condition can cause a range of symptoms, from feeling restless or worried, trouble concentrating, sleep difficulties, tension, dizziness or heart palpitations.

Health anxiety

Spending so much time worrying about your health, or getting ill, that it starts to take over your life. People might frequently check their body for signs of illness, such as lumps, tingling or pain, ask people for reassurance that they are not ill, worry that their doctor or medical tests may have missed something, obsessively looking at health information, avoid anything to do with serious illness, or act as if they were ill (for example, avoid physical activities). Anxiety itself can cause symptoms like headaches or a racing heartbeat, and this can be mistaken for signs of illness.


Everyone needs different amounts of sleep, but if you do not feel refreshed in the morning and are constantly tired during the day you may be suffering from insomnia. Difficulty getting off to sleep, waking several times in the night or earlier than planned and lying awake can all be symptoms of insomnia. Other common symptoms can include irritability, and difficulty concentrating. People can suffer from these symptoms for months or even years and it is very common – one in three people will experience insomnia at some point in their lives although it is more frequently experienced by older people.

Low Self-Esteem

People develop a general image of themselves based on past experiences, often beginning in childhood. This may be due to being criticised or not receiving sufficient praise and can result in them believing they are worthless no matter how well they do as an adult. As none of us can succeed at everything we do, people with low self-esteem often expect others to judge them negatively as well. This isn’t a mental health problem in itself, but will often be part of other mental health difficulties.

Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)

Distressing thoughts, images or worries that something bad will happen if you don’t do a certain actions. For example, needing to repeatedly clean the kitchen to prevent your child from getting ill or the needing to arrange items in a certain way otherwise something bad will happen to friends or family.

Panic disorder

Panic is an anxiety disorder in which panic attacks occur unexpectedly and frequently without a clear cause or trigger. The attacks are sudden periods of intense fear that may include palpitations, sweating, shaking, shortness of breath, numbness, or a feeling that something terrible is going to happen. Some people may feel constantly afraid of having another panic attack, to the point that this fear itself can trigger one.


A phobia is an extreme fear or anxiety triggered by a particular situation (such as social situations) or a particular object (such as spiders). If a phobia becomes very severe, a person may change their life in order to avoid the thing that is causing them anxiety. As well as limiting their day-to-day life, it can also cause a lot of distress.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

This is an anxiety disorder that a person might develop if they have been involved in or witnessed a traumatic event. It was first recognised in war veterans, but a wide range of traumatic experiences can trigger this condition. There are a number of symptoms associated with this condition such as flashbacks, feeling numb, trouble sleeping. These are sometimes described as an ‘acute stress reaction’. If a number of the symptoms continue for longer than a month then a diagnosis of PTSD may be given.

Social anxiety disorder

Extreme fear or anxiety triggered by social situations (such as parties, workplaces, or any situation in which you have to talk to another person). It is also known as social phobia.

Page last reviewed: 21 March, 2023