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

Private and Independent Practice Special Interest Group



About the Private and Independent Practice SIG (PIPSIG)

The Private and Independent Practice Special Interest Group 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.


How to join

Membership is open to all Members of or Associates of the College. Others may be invited to join at the discretion of the Chair. To join, please complete our online application form or email the College Membership section.



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.  Please join it here.


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



Executive Committee


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


Forthcoming events

Private and Independent Practice SIG AGM

20-21 September 2018 at the Belfast Royal Ulster Club.


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



Important documents to help regulate your practice:






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