Different types of psychologists are working for Psychologen Amsterdam. What are the differences in education, experience and the issues they handle?
A psychologist is a professional expert in psychology, the science that deals with the inner life (thoughts, feelings, wishes) and human behavior.
The title of psychologist is no longer protected in the Netherlands since 1993. To distinguish between people who simply call themselves psychologists and people who have completed university studies, the Netherlands Institute of Psychologists (NIP) has established the classification Psychologist NIP. This means that only psychologists with a completed university degree in Master of Psychology, supplemented with a year of practical experience may call themselves Psychologist NIP.
‘Gezondheidszorg’ psychologist (health care psychologist), also called GZ psychologist
A GZ psychologist has completed two years of professional training after university studies in psychology and can work in all sectors of health care. A GZ psychologist is a protected title in the Netherlands. A GZ psychologist who meets the statutory training requirements can register in the BIG-register. With a BIG-registration, they are allowed to use their professional title and are subject to disciplinary law. BIG is an abbreviation of the ‘Wet Beroepen in de Individuele Gezondheidszorg’ (Professions in Individual Health care Act). The purpose of the BIG Act is to promote and monitor the quality of health care.
Both a psychologist and a GZ psychologist treat psychological problems (such as sadness, addiction, depression, anxiety, phobia) and problems in personal life (such as loss and mourning, burnout, relationship problems). The main tasks of the psychologist are to determine the diagnosis and treatment of your problems. Psychological knowledge and experience are used for this.
A psychotherapist is specialized in treating clients with complex, often personality-rooted psychological issues. Treatment by a psychotherapist can be both problem-oriented and person-oriented. The psychotherapist offers treatment that is often more intensive and longer than the treatment of, for example, the GZ psychologist. A psychotherapist pays attention to both the client’s social environment and the client as an individual.
Psychotherapists have completed a minimum of four years’ postgraduate professional training. The profession of psychotherapist, like that of the clinical psychologist and the GZ psychologist, are eligible under the BIG Act. A referral is required for treatment by a psychotherapist, for example from a general practitioner or a psychologist. A psychotherapist is a protected title in the Netherlands: you can only call yourself a psychotherapist if you have followed a recognized psychotherapist course and are registered in the BIG-register.
A clinical psychologist is a specialised GZ psychologist who has completed a six-year postgraduate course as a clinical psychologist after university. The clinical psychologist’s field of work consists of diagnosing and treating serious and complex psychological problems and mental disorders and performing crisis interventions. The clinical psychologist often works in institutions such as hospitals, but can also have an independent practice. Clinical psychologists are registered in the BIG-register of clinical psychologists.
At Psychologen Amsterdam you can visit an experienced and qualified psychologist or psychotherapist for treatment of your problems, who has the correct training and registration.
The goal of the treatment of both the psychologist and the psychotherapist is to reduce or make your problem more manageable, in order that the problem no longer controls your daily life, and if possible to solve your problem completely. Your commitment as a client is just as important as the expertise of the psychologist or psychotherapist.