The Cassel Hospital provides treatment for adults with severe and complex personality disorders, and young people with emerging personality disorders who’ve often exhausted all other avenues of help from mental health services.
Patients are treated at Cassel for a minimum of 9 months and a maximum of 33 months:
Inpatient treatment is up to 9 months
Outreach treatment is up to 24 months
The treatment path is determined by the patient's individual circumstances and resources available locally. It will be confirmed in consultation with the patient and local team at a second review scheduled at around 5 months.
Our approach and outcomes
We aim to provide evidence-based treatment to reduce people’s symptoms and improve their quality of life. We audit treatment outcomes on a continuous basis to monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of our treatment.
- Research shows that our treatment:
- Reduces the number and severity symptoms
- Reduces self-harm and suicidal ideation (considering or planning suicide and suicide attempts)
- Improves interpersonal relations
- Improves occupational capacity
- Reduces use of local mental health services
- Is cost effective.
Referrals to the Cassel Hospital can be made by:
- Consultant psychiatrists
- Adult mental health services
- Child and adolescent mental health services for young people at the stage of being transferred to adult services.
Referrals must come from a consultant psychiatrist or from the local community mental health team, with the clearly stated support of the responsible consultant.
For more information about referrals, or if you have any questions before you make a referral, please contact:
Referrals can be made online using the referral form on this page.
As a national specialist (Tier 4) personality disorder service, we have a contract with NHS England for the majority of our beds.
Local mental health services in England can refer patients for treatment, with no need to apply for funding and without costs to their local health budgets.
Patients from Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland will require funding from the local authorities responsible for out-of-area treatments.
To be considered for funding, patients must meet the following criteria:
- Age over 17.5 (age 18 on admission)
- Male and female patients accepted
- Have a diagnosis of complex or severe personality disorder
- Have a significant history of involvement with local mental health services on a Tier 2 and Tier 3 level
- For outreach treatment, patients must live within the M25 area.
Patients won’t be accepted for treatment funding if any of the following applies to them:
- Active risk to others
- Active and severe substance misuse
- Primary diagnosis of schizophrenia or bipolar affective disorder
- Body Mass Index (BMI) below 16
- (Inpatient treatment only) - if they’re unable to manage weekends at home.
The Cassel’s research unit was established in 1995 to promote and coordinate research into personality disorder.
Our aim is to develop studies in the area of psychoanalytic psychotherapy and psychosocial approaches to personality disorder, and to improve the evidence base of treatment within NHS psychotherapy services.
Over the years, our research unit’s work has helped to establish and consolidate a strong research culture within hospital and psychotherapy services in general.
We’ve published a wide range of research articles and papers in peer-reviewed journals.
We offer both clinical and research internships which consist of a 6-month placement in the inpatient service, outpatient service or research unit.
For information about the work of the research unit and internships, please contact:
We’re a multidisciplinary team of nurses, clinical psychologists and psychotherapists and specialist community support.
Dr. Kimberley Barlow
Consultant Psychiatrist in Psychotherapy, Cassel Hospital and Outreach Service
Dr. Miriam Barrett
Consultant Psychiatrist in Psychotherapy, Inpatient Clinical Lead
Dr Beate Schumacher
Head of Psychotherapy and Social Work
Senior Social Worker
Curtis de Leon
Outreach Group Psychotherapist
Inpatient and Outreach Group Psychotherapist
Highly Specialist Adult Psychotherapist
Principle Adult Psychotherapist
Principle Adult Psychotherapist
Clinical Team Leader
Annalie Van Den Heever
Inpatient service and referrals
Outreach service and Research