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Complex Trauma and DID

The Kemp Unit is a specialist relational and psychologically based treatment unit for female patients aged 18 to 70 years of age, with complex trauma and dissociative disorder presentations.

Treatment will include the management of co-morbid conditions such as addictions, eating disorders (BMI >=15 with demonstrated medical stability) and for identified patients recommendations around and preparation for specific trauma therapy.

Services to be offered


  • Specialist diagnostic assessment, formulation and complex care planning
  • Individualised bespoke inpatient intervention & risk management approaches
  • Liaison throughout the patient’s stay with specialist community care in the patient's local services
  • Treatment can also include supportive work around stability of co-morbid conditions which commonly de-stabilize during trauma interventions 


Our Approach

The underpinning framework of the unit is interpersonal and relational within an enabling environment. Care on the unit is delivered in a clinically phased treatment approach, tailored to the patient’s requirements, which is considered as part of their wider long-term recovery, most of which will take place within their own community setting:



Phase 1: Assessment, Formulation, Engagement, Care Planning and 'Being Safe'

Phase 2: Developing Personal Understanding, Skills and Resilience

Phase 3: Discharge, Onward Care Planning and Transferring Skills

The Team

  • Consultant Psychiatrist
  • Psychologists
  • Specialist Trauma therapists 
  • Art Therapist
  • Team Manager
  • Nursing Team and Support Workers
  • Occupational Therapist
  • Social Workers
  • Dietician
  • Physiotherapist


Alongside the relational approach, a unit program of psychological group work alongside socio-occupational recovery interventions are run on the unit which is coordinated by the unit psychologist with input from all of the MDT and nursing team. The focus of the psychological group work is around the key symptom areas of complex trauma and dissociation which impact on functioning and risk.

  • Emotions - Experience, understanding, tolerance & management
  • Dissociation & Trauma Symptoms Management
  • Interpersonal Skills & Functioning
  • Negative core self-beliefs, Shame & Self Compassion
  • Body connection

The programme of interventions are based on and informed by those psychological approaches which assist in the development of skills and functioning in managing these symptom areas and include:

  • International guidance and best practice approaches for managing and working with dissociation
  • Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT) – adapted for PTSD &  Borderline Personality Disorder
  • Compassion Focused Therapy Group – Compassionate Mind & Shame Groups
  • DBT Skills Training approaches
  • EMDR Based Ego Strengthening Resources
  • Cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) approaches
  • Body connection / sensorimotor therapy approaches

 These are delivered on the unit in group & 1:1 coaching formats as appropriate to the patient.

 A specialist 1:1 treatment package for complex PTSD & Dissociation is integrated into the patient individual care plan. 


  • Improved quality of life and functioning
  • Reduction in harmful behaviours
  • Improved self-compassion
  • Reduced trauma and dissociative experiences
  • Improved ability to manage emotions
  • Improved relationships and interpersonal functioning
  • Ability to safely move to ongoing community approaches to their continued recovery journey

For further information or to make a referral, please call the Business Development Team on 01904 420910 or email or In submitting a referral, or making an enquiry and providing us with any sensitive personal information by telephone, email or by other means, you are accepting the terms of The Retreat York Privacy Statement which can be found here.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Meet the diagnostic criteria for either:
    • Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
    • Dissociative Identity Disorder
    • With or without other co-morbidities
  • Females. aged 18 to 70 years
  • Has a Care Co-ordinator from the Community Mental Health Team (CMHT)
  • Detained or informal status

Exclusion Criteria

  • Antisocial Personality Disorder
  • Current history of violence or aggression to others
  • BMI below 15 or unstable BMI / physical status

Referrals considered on a case by case basis:

  • Patients with comorbid mild LD/Autism will be considered on a case by case basis to ensure the unit can meet their needs.
  • Patients with historical forensic sections may be considered on a case by case basis.