The Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

Psychological and social support

Why Might you want to talk to a Clinical Psychologist?

Having a kidney transplant or donating a kidney can bring many different feelings. Many people find that having a kidney transplant is a positive experience. However, it is also very normal to experience a wide range of emotions and people might find that they feel worried, fearful, angry, guilty or low in mood. People can find that their feelings change at different stages of transplant. For example, some people may find deciding whether to go ahead with transplant or kidney donation difficult, whereas others may find it hard to manage with things afterwards.

People find different ways to manage. Sometimes this is with the support for others, for example, family, friends and staff in the renal team. There is also a Renal Clinical Psychology Service. Their role is to provide support to people having a transplant and to people donating a kidney at all stages of their care.

Who is the service for?

This service is open to all patients in the Leeds Renal Service. We see people before and after transplant. We also see people who are donating or are considering donating a kidney.

How could a Clinical Psychologist help?

Psychologists can help people in a variety of ways. Rather than prescribing medicines, clinical psychologists are trained to help people talk through their problems. The person you see will have an understanding of the psychological and emotional effects that transplant and kidney donation can have. Sometimes talking through problems can help people to find other ways of managing their difficulties. You will not have to talk about anything that you don’t want to.

What might you want to talk about with a Clinical Psychologist?

The things people want to talk about are different for each person and the psychologist will discuss this with you when you meet. Some examples of things that psychologists can help with include:

  • Deciding whether to go ahead with transplant or kidney donation
  • Coping with being on the kidney transplant waiting list
  • Making sense of thoughts and feelings
  • Developing ways to cope with difficult feelings
  • Developing solutions to practical, personal or relationship difficulties
  • Effectively communicating with others, including friends, family, colleagues and professionals about transplant or kidney donation

What happens to the information you share with us?

Information that you share with the psychologist is kept confidential and notes we write in meetings will be kept separate from your medical notes. Psychologists have a responsibility to tell somebody if they are worried that you or somebody else is at risk of getting hurt. We would always try to discuss this with you first. Your psychologist will talk more about confidentiality with you at your first appointment.

How often will you see the Psychologist?

Some people see the psychologist only once or twice, other people may see them once a week or once a fortnight for a few weeks or months. You and the psychologist will discuss and agree together how often seems best for you to meet.

Who will you see?

The person you will see will usually be a qualified Clinical Psychologist who specialises in working with people with kidney problems. You may be asked if you are willing to see a Psychologist in Clinical Training. This Psychologist would be supervised by a qualified Clinical Psychologist. Our clinic is at Fielding House, St James’sUniversityHospital.

What should you do if you would like this kind of help?

If you feel that you might benefit from talking to a psychologist, please tell one of the doctors or nurses in the renal team and they will be able to discuss the referral with you. There might be a wait before you can be seen (the doctor or nurse referring you will be able to find out more about this, or you can phone our department).

The Psychologists who work in the renal team are:

Dr Janette Moran & Dr Chloe Miller

Department of Clinical & Health Psychology

Fielding House

St James’sUniversityHospital

Beckett Street

Leeds,LS9 7TF

Tel. 0113 2065897

Renal Social Workers

The renal social workers are based at St. James's Univerisity Hospital. They require patients to self refer if they would like to speak to a social worker. They can be contacted on tel. 0113 2066824