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Counselling services for staff

Find out all about how employees can access the University’s Employee Assistance or counselling services.

University Counselling Provision

There are times when we all need some extra support to balance the demands of everyday life. That is why the University provides a free and confidential counselling service Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) for staff.

Our face-to-face counselling services are provided through the Royal United Hospital with sessions held on the main hospital site.

Please note, due to the ongoing Covid19 outbreak, the EAP is currently a limited face-to-face service as well as a telephone based service. These can be booked as normal (see: How does it work?)

What can the EAP help with?

The EAP is designed to help you with a wide range of work, family and personal issues. From work-life balance to childcare information, relationships to workplace issues, health and well-being, let your EAP support you on the issues that affect all of us at some point in our lives. Topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Work-life balance

  • Work and/or personal relationships

  • Bullying and harassment

  • Disability and illness

  • Workplace pressure

  • Anxiety and depression

  • Stress

  • Bereavement and loss

  • Gender identity

  • Sexual orientation

  • Debt

  • Careers

  • Family issues

  • Life events

  • Addiction

How does it work?

The Royal United Hospital’s Counselling team provides this service on behalf of the University. Sessions are normally held at the RUH in Bath. Staff can self-refer by ringing 01225 825960 or 01225 824484. At busy times you may need to leave a message but the Counselling Service will get back to you. If you are not sure whether counselling is for you then you can discuss this with the service when you first make contact with them. If you have any access requirements these can be discussed when making your appointment.

Waiting Times

When you contact EAP for an initial appointment, they will usually aim to arrange this for you within one to two weeks (this maybe sooner as they are also offering cancellation appointments when these become available). Once you have attended your initial appointment your counselling sessions will normally start within 2 weeks, depending upon any particular requests you have regarding days, times and whether you prefer a male or a female counsellor.

At peak periods, these waiting times may vary but the service will try to ensure that you are supported as quickly as possible. If you are having difficulties getting an appointment, please contact SHEW

Your Counselling Sessions

The first session usually lasts for up to 40 minutes and provides you with an opportunity to identify your concerns and to discuss what you hope to gain from your counselling. This enables the service to identify the best approach to your sessions.

If you decide to go ahead with counselling you will then be offered a course of up to 4 counselling sessions and a further follow-up session. Each of these lasts for up to 50 minutes.

Your counsellor will normally offer you weekly, regular appointments always in a safe, private space set aside exclusively for you. Here you can:

  • explore your situation in a calm and secure environment

  • share your thoughts and feelings without fear of judgement

  • develop new perspectives, strategies and life skills

  • examine ways to make positive changes in your life

All EAP counsellors are widely experienced, professionally trained and qualified and, in addition to many years of workplace counselling experience, have specialist interests and expertise.

Cancelling an Appointment

If you need to cancel an appointment, other than your initial 40-minute appointment, then contact the EAP service at the RUH who will be happy to reschedule that session. EAP ask for 48 working hours’ notice of a cancellation or you will forfeit that session.

Will anyone at the University know that I am using this service?

EAP is a member of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP), working to the ‘Ethical Framework for Good Practice in Counselling and Psychotherapy’. The EAP service strictly upholds confidentiality, and this will be fully discussed with you during your initial appointment. The Safety, Health and Employee Wellbeing (SHEW) manage the EAP contract. SHEW receives statistics that tell us how many people are using the service and why. These reports are generalised so that there is no way of identifying individual attendees. You can therefore feel confident in using it knowing that anything you say will be kept private.

Other services available

The Education Support Partnership is an independent counselling service. It is a charity that supports staff in higher education. They provide a 24/7 telephone and email helpline. You can contact them directly by phoning 08000 562561 or by emailing They can provide advice and support for a range of issues including those covered by the EAP.

Information about your contact with the Education Support Partnership is never passed on to the University.

Students Counselling services for students is provided by Student Support who should be contacted direct.


If you have any questions, please contact us.