About us

The private and independent practice special interest group (PIPSIG) was formed in the 1990s and membership is increasing as more psychiatrists opt for portfolio careers. Members from other Specialities and Faculties of the College are welcome if they work to any extent outside the NHS.

The group includes those in private practice, retired working psychiatrists, medico-legal and Mental Health Act work and doctors visiting and working in independent hospitals and clinics.

The group's concerns have been that those working outside the NHS have, in the past, not been connected with college affairs. Current challenges include the requirements of relicensing and revalidation (including appraisal and 360 degree feedback), maintaining skills required for independent psychiatric practice and liaising with other college activities.

The group seeks to develop the interface between the College, the independent sector, the insurers and the NHS.

Previous annual reports can be viewed on the website and show the range of activities that PIPSIG covers.

Member Year of joining Position
Dr Lesley Haines 2013 Chair
Dr Danny Allen 2013 Secretary
Dr Tom Carnwath 2016 Financial Officer
Dr John Sharkey 2013 Committee Member
Dr Katy Briffa 2015 Committee Member
Dr Paul Divall 2015 Committee Member

Upcoming events

Save the date: PIPSIG Annual Conference- "Since you've been gone..."  Developments in psychiatry over the last 10 years, for those who have been outside mainstream NHS practice.

Friday 12 July 2019 at Royal College of Psychiatrists

Working outside a managed organisation, or in isolation, it is very easy to concentrate on a small area of practice and lose track of developments more generally.  We all maintain our CPD, but it can be difficult to keep track of which innovations are an exciting development but a 'flash in the pan' and which come to be utilised widely. 

This session is aimed at those practising psychiatry in specialised areas or outside managed and is intended to provide information on developments over the last ten years that are influencing practice. Please see programme for further information.

Booking is now open so secure your place now.

Past events

Annual meeting in Belfast, at Royal Ulster Club 20 and 21 September 2018 "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly; what the legal profession wants from us"

Joint Occ Health SIG and PIPSIG at College HQ on 1 March 2018 "Working with Mental Illness"

Important documents to help regulate your practice:


We now have a forum. The purpose is multifold but it will address issues like finding people in your area to form a PDP peer group and will enable exchange of ideas and a broader range of views in response to any queries you may have. 

PIPSIG on Twitter 

PIPSIG is on Twitter! Details of forthcoming events, consultations that might concern PIPSIG members and items of interest are posted.  Please follow @RCPsychPIPSIG

Workshop feedback

GMC guidance


Should you require a copy of any previous bulletins not currently available on the website, please contact Francis Maunze – the College Archivist.

Get in contact to receive further information regarding a career in psychiatry