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The Royal College of Psychiatrists Improving the lives of people with mental illness

Committee on ECT and Related Treatments


The Committee on Electroconvulsive Therapy and Related Treatments deals with matters relating to ECT practice across the UK and practice in relation to other physical treatments.


The ECT Handbook – third edition

  • The ECT Handbook, published by the Royal College of Psychiatrists, presents the latest clinical guidelines on the prescription and practical administration of electroconvulsive therapy.

To find out more and order a copy


Training and accreditation

  • The committee runs annual ECT Training Days.  For further information and registration check the Training Courses pages of this website.


Position statements on ECT and related treatments

  • The committee has produced statements setting out its position on ECT and related treatments:

Statement on Electroconvulsive Therapy

Statement on Ketamine to treat Depression

Statement on Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation for Depression

Statement on Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS) in Depression

Statement on Neurosurgery for Mental Disorder (NMD), also known as Psychiatric Neurosurgery


ECT best practice guide

  • This document details the recommended level of knowledge and skill for all trainees and career grade psychiatrists. Psychiatric trainees are encouraged to use this to monitor their progress throughout their training, in addition to supporting evidence from workplace-based assessments.


    Please note that there is now specific guidance for higher trainees, especially in general adult and old age psychiatry, which will hopefully embed the knowledge and skills from core training in ECT in consultant practice.



ECT lecture and plan

  • This lecture has been created by the Committee on ECT and Related Treatments as a way of addressing widespread negative attitudes to ECT.  It is designed to be delivered by health professionals with a specialist knowledge of ECT to explain ECT to an audience which might include Trust Boards, clinical commissioners, medical psychiatric trainees and associated health professionals new to psychiatry, general hospital staff, general practitioners, medical students, patient and interested public groups.


A pdf of the lecture, lecture plan and introductory notes are provided.


A power point presentation of the lecture is available on request from


Stella Galea, Committee Manager




To contact the committee email Stella Galea, Committee Manager.  



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Latest News

BBC documentary

Why are we still using electroconvulsive therapy? This short film produced by the BBC contains a demonstration of the use of electroconvulsive therapy which could be used for educational purposes.



Ruth's experience

Raj Persaud in conversation with Ruth about her experience of ECT and its effect on her depression.