Up to 30% of the problems that patients consult their GPs about have a psychosocial component.1,2 Managing the needs of these patients has contributed to the increase of counselling provision in primary care. Most primary care groups (81%) have some provision for practice-based counselling,3 and around a third4 to a half 5 of general practices now have counselling services provided by a range of practitioners. Here, we assess the effectiveness of counselling for managing emotional and mental health problems in general practice.
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