CBT for Long Term Persistent and Distressing Health Conditions

Key information

Start date:
To be confirmed

Course providers

This course is jointly delivered by Salomons Institute for Applied Psychology, Canterbury Christchurch University and the University of Surrey.

Why choose this course?

  • Study on a course commissioned by Health Education England (HEE) that is designed to meet the requirements of the national curriculum for cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) in the context of long-term persistent and distressing health conditions (NHS Talking Therapies). 
  • Develop the skills, knowledge and competencies required to assess, formulate and treat patients who are presenting with a variety of long-term conditions in NHS Talking Therapies context using CBT.
  • Learn from a multidisciplinary team of lecturers and guest speakers including, psychologists, cognitive behavioural therapists, and experts by experience. 
  • Get a continuing professional development certificate.  

What you will study

Section 1: Underpinning competencies for work with people with long-term health conditions

This section explores:

  • Therapists' beliefs about working with long-term conditions (LTCs).
  • The impact of LTCs on individuals and their mental health.
  • Assessment and formulation with people with LTCs.
  • Working across organisations.

Section 2: Generic intervention skills for work with people with long term health conditions

This section explores:

  • Adapting CBT interventions when working with clients with LTC.
  • Promoting self-management.
  • Working with partners.

Section 3: Evidence-based interventions for specific health conditions

This section covers interventions for working with medically unexplained symptoms/persistent and stressing physical symptoms and LTCs including:

  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalopathy
  • Chronic pain
  • Diabetes
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
  • Coronary heart disease
  • Cancer.

Careers and graduate prospects

On successful completion of this course, you’ll receive a continuing professional development (CPD) certificate in CBT for Long Term Persistent and Distressing Health Conditions.

Please note, this certificate is non-credit bearing. 

Learn more about psychology careers on the BPS website

Course leaders

Kate Leech profile image

Dr Kate Leech

Teaching Fellow, School of Psychology, University of Surrey

Daniel Salter

Director of CBT Programmes, School of Psychology & Life Sciences Salomons Institute for Applied Psychology Canterbury Christ Church University

Teaching staff

Learn from a multidisciplinary team of lecturers and guest speakers including, psychologists, cognitive behavioural therapists and experts by experience. Our speakers have extensive experience working in a variety of physical health contexts.


You’ll complete:

  • Ten days of university teaching
  • Service-based learning in an NHS Talking Therapies service 
  • Independent study. 

University teaching and learning  

Your university-based teaching will be delivered through a combination of: 

  • Clinical skills practice sessions 
  • Group work  
  • Lectures 
  • Observation 
  • Peer-based learning. 

Outside of these, you’ll be expected to carry out independent study. 

Clinical placements

As part of the course, you will need to complete a clinical component where you are able to access patients and clinical supervision. This will usually be with an NHS Talking Therapies service, where you’ll typically already be employed.

Whilst on the course, your NHS Talking Therapies service supervisor will guide you through your experience as you apply your new learning. 

You’ll be expected to keep a log of your clinical activity and supervision.


To pass the course, you’ll need to successfully complete clinical and supervision logs for two completed clinical cases.

You will also need to attend a formative 30-minute role-play exercise on day 10 of the teaching days.

Entry requirements

To be eligible to apply for this course, you must be: 

  • An accredited cognitive behavioural therapist, with at least one year’s post-qualification experience. 
  • Employed by an NHS Talking Therapies service with access to clients presenting with distress related to long-term conditions. 
  • Able to access specialist supervision with an accredited CBT practioner who has attended a long-term conditions training programme and has at least one year’s experience with a significant long-term conditions caseload. 
  • Able to commit to the six-month course duration. 

Fees and funding

Fees are to be confirmed

How to apply

All applications should be made directly through your local NHS Talking Therapies service provider.

Please speak with your service manager or supervisor for information about applying.

Terms and conditions

When you accept an offer of a place at the University of Surrey, you are agreeing to comply with our policies and regulations and our terms and conditions. You are also confirming you have read and understood the University's prospective student privacy notice.

Further details of our terms and conditions will follow.


This online prospectus has been prepared and published in advance of the commencement of the course. The University of Surrey has used its reasonable efforts to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content or additional costs) may occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for a course with us. Read the full disclaimer.

Course location and contact details

Campus location

Stag Hill

Stag Hill is the University's main campus and where the majority of our courses are taught. 


University of Surrey
Surrey GU2 7XH