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The Assessment Process at Dundee Advanced Interventions Service


What follows is an overview of the usual assessment process when you come to Dundee. We would usually expect patients to be accompanied by friends/ relatives/ partners/ etc. and we will seek your consent to get additional information from them.

Casenote Review

Before you are assessed we will have reviewed all available case notes so that we have as much information as possible on previous treatments. It also helps us to identify areas where there is uncertainty (e.g. diagnosis), and also issues that we should focus on (such as attitudes to treatment).

Psychiatric Review

In the morning, you will meet with one of the psychiatrists (Dr Christmas, Professor Keith Matthews, or Professor Douglas Steele) who will conduct a detailed psychiatric interview, focusing on current symptoms and impact of the illness upon your life. We will also spend time understanding more about you, your family, and your work. We routinely use rating scales in order to rate the severity of your illness.

Psychological Review

In the afternoon, you will meet one of our experienced psychological therapists who will take a slightly different approach to understanding your difficulties. This session focuses on the previous psychological therapies that you have received and looks at your experiences of these. It will also look at how 'psychologically minded' you may be so that we can offer advice on the likelihood that further psychological therapies (e.g. CBT) will be of benefit.

Being 'psychologically minded' refers to your general tendency to think about your emotions, your thoughts, your behaviours, and make connections between them. It also takes into account the extent to which you attribute symptoms to psychological processes ("it's my thoughts") rather than biological processes ("it's in my brain"). Not everyone is psychologically minded and a preference for one style doesn't imply that one style is better than another. Indeed, many people will vary between their approaches to their problems.

Feedback Session

In the afternoon, you will meet with all of the team that you have previously met over the course of the assessment. During this session we will offer feedback on what our views are and what treatment recommendations we are likely to make. This is an opportunity to ask questions and to clarify anything that hasn't been fully clear.

The purpose of this session is to come to a common understanding of your difficulties and to ensure that you go away with a sense of what happens next in terms of treatment options.


We would normally expect to send reports to the referring psychiatrist within 2-3 weeks of assessment. In almost all cases, we will offer you a copy of the report that we send. This will enable you to correct anything that you feel is wrong, understand the information on which we are making our recommendations, and to discuss the treatment plan with your psychiatrist.



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Terms and Conditions

Use of the Site by Professionals

The information provided here is meant as a guide rather than an operational framework for the service. If a patient does not appear to meet particular criteria it does not necessarily mean that they are not suitable for further assessment. Please discuss it with us.

The information here cannot be exhaustive and you would always be advised to get in touch with us to discuss a possible referral or any other queries that you may have.

Use of the site by patients

We hope that the site has been helpful. However, it should not be seen as the definitive source of information regarding either the Dundee Advanced Interventions Service, or the treatments we provide. The information should be considered up-to-date. Each page gives the date that it was last modified. We cannot guarantee the accuracy of 100% of the information, although we certainly aim for this.

We regret that we can't enter into personal correspondence with individuals regarding their treatment. Whilst we may be able to help people to ask the right questions or to facilitate referral to more specialist services, we are not in a position to offer tailored advice about your illness or your care.

You should always discuss your treatment with your psychiatrist or your general practitioner (GP). You should not make any changes to your medication based on information you may have found on the internet. Nor should you make treatment decisions based solely on the information you may get from our, or anybody else's, website - discuss it with those people involved in your treatment.

If you have concerns about the quality of your care, you should contact the Mental Welfare Commission for Scotland (MWC) if you are in Scotland; the Mental Health Commission in Eire; or the Care Quality Commission (CQC) in England and Wales (detained patients only).

Copyright and use of information

All of the material (unless indicated otherwise) on this website is copyrighted and reproduction outside the conditions below is not permitted.

However, individuals and non-profit organisations are permitted to:

  • Print out personal copies of the information, either for reference, or for giving to others (such as family, or your psychiatrist).
  • Retain the information on your own computer for your own personal use.

If you wish to use any of the information provided for other purposes (such as teaching, or presentations), please contact us. There are likely to be few, or no restrictions but we like to know who is using the material. Thank you.

External links

This website links to other external sites. The authors of the Dundee AIS website cannot be responsible for the content of external internet sites. The inclusion of a link to an external website should not be seen as an endorsement of the website, the site's owners, or the views expressed.

If such a link is considered inappropriate or is broken please notify us immediately.

Please note that you will need to enable javascript in order to view email addresses or use some features of the site.


Privacy Policy

Information recorded

Some information (such as your browser, operating system, and the pages you visit) is collected automatically by the server on which the site is hosted. This information cannot identify you personally and we do not monitor individual usage of the website.

We may collect site usage statistics to enable us to manage and develop the website. This information typically includes how many people have visited the site, what browser they use, and where they came from. We do not (and cannot) log users' personal information.

If you send us email regarding the service, or a possible referral, we will retain this email and file it with any clinical notes that arise out of the referral. This ensures that we have as much information as possible on individuals who may be seen by the service and so that we can track referrals.

Information Security and Governance

Please note that the email addresses and contact forms provided on the site are not secure and patient-identifiable information should not be sent. If you do send information which identifies an individual (e.g. name, address) you may be jeopardising patient confidentiality.

If you do wish to send such information, you may be able to do this if you have an email account. Please contact us to get our email address before sending such information.

If you use PGP to encrypt your email, you can import David Christmas' PGP key. Please indicate that your email is encrypted with this key in the subject line of your email.


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National Services Scotland

Advanced Interventions Service
Area 7, Level 6
South Block
Ninewells Hospital and Medical School
Dundee, DD1 9SY. UK.
Tel: +44 (0)1382 496233

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