Bulletin: September 2017

12th September 2017

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

Practitioners need to be aware of the forthcoming European Union (EU) General Data Protection Regulation (see The GDPR will apply in the UK from 25 May 2018 and the Government has confirmed that the UK’s decision to leave the EU will not affect the commencement of this regulation.


If you are currently subject to the Data Protection Act (DPA) – and virtually all GHR practitioners and training providers will be so subject – then it is likely that you will also be subject to the GDPR.


Like the DPA, the GDPR essentially applies to ‘personal data’. However, the GDPR’s definition of what constitutes personal data is more detailed and can include, for example, information such as a name, a photo, an email address, bank details, posts on social networking websites, medical information, or a computer IP address etc. For most individuals, keeping client lists or contact/personal details etc, the change to the definition should make little practical difference and you can assume that if you hold information that falls within the scope of the DPA, it will also fall within the scope of the GDPR.


N.B. There is also a category referred to as ‘sensitive personal information’, the collection and processing of which requires ‘explicit consent’ from the data subject (i.e. usually your client) and can include, for example, racial or ethnic origin; political opinion; religious or philosophical beliefs; trade union membership; genetic and biometric data; health data or data concerning sex life or sexual orientation, and which are subject to stricter rules than ‘personal data’ in respect of data security procedures.


Further, the GDPR applies to both automated personal data and to manual filing systems where personal data are accessible according to specific criteria. This is wider than the DPA’s definition and could include chronologically ordered sets of manual records containing personal data.


Under the GDPR, the data protection principles (see set out the main responsibilities for both data controllers and processors (who, in small businesses, are very often one and the same person) and whilst the principles are similar to those in the DPA there is added detail at certain points and a new accountability requirement. Indeed, the most significant addition is the accountability principle. The GDPR requires you to show how you comply with the principles – for example by documenting the decisions you take about a processing activity.


Whilst these new developments in data protection may at first glance appear to be yet further layers of confusing bureaucracy, we do not feel that they should necessarily cause those individuals affected any substantial compliancy problems. It seems rather like just more of the same with a requirement for greater diligence and an understanding that there can be significantly increased penalties for failure to comply. It would appear that those who will need to make the most changes and who would incur the greatest penalties for compliance failures are large corporations and public sector bodies and it is likely that it is for these entities that the GDPR legislation has essentially been established. Notwithstanding this likelihood, the rest of us cannot be complacent about our data gathering activities and responsibilities, and we have therefore provided some further links that should provide you with additional information within areas that may be relevant to you:


Small Business







The GHR has no particular legal knowledge with respect to data protection issues and the above article has been included to essentially offer a brief overview as we understand it and to bring the matter to your attention. Consequently, should you have any specific queries or concerns about how this new legislation might affect you (or what specific steps you might need to take to ensure compliance), we would advise that you contact the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), the body responsible for overseeing data protection in the UK, via their website at


Whenever we have had cause to consult them in the past they have always proved to be a very approachable authority.




Use of GHR and GHSC Logos and Text


We would like to remind Registrants that both GHR and GHSC Logos are available to download from the Members Area of our website at:


With regard to inclusion in websites, we encourage that they be turned into active links back to the GHR/GHSC website at (preferably together with active text links simply stating General Hypnotherapy Register and General Hypnotherapy Standards Council respectively).


N.B. Senior Practitioner, Advanced Practitioner, Acknowledged Supervisor and Accredited Training Logos are available to those eligible on request from


Further, wherever ‘GHR’, ‘GHSC’, ‘General Hypnotherapy Register’ or ‘General Hypnotherapy Standards Council’ is featured on your website we would encourage that these be turned into active links back to the GHR/GHSC website at


Mutual benefits of active linking


Members of the public/prospective clients will be able to check your accreditation/registration.


Greater promotion of the GHR/GHSC will increase its standing on the Web and thereby the potential exposure of your profile to prospective clients on the GHR/GHSC website directory.




Does Hypnotherapy Work for Weight Loss?

Every therapist has at some time in their career been (will be) asked this question and the information below may prove of considerable interest.

GMB Weight Loss Clinical Evidence

The information below was presented by Dr.Sarah Clarke, CPsychol, PhD at the 2nd International Time Perspective Psychology conference at Warsaw University in Poland.

Details of Martin and Marion Shirran’s Gastric Mind Band Weight Loss approach which is based around Hypnotherapy, and incorporates their own version of CBT, Pause Button Therapy, was first presented at Coimbra University in Portugal in 2012 at the invitation of Professor Philip Zimbardo of Stanford University, San Francisco, USA.

Weight Loss Hypnosis – Clinical Evidence.

Summary of study:

125 participants selected from a database of clients who had attended the Elite Clinic in Spain to receiveGastric mind Band treatment for weight loss. The database consisted of some 500 cases, of which 176 had pre- and post-treatment data. Of those 176, a further 51 had incomplete data sets or had follow-up periods of less than one month, and were therefore omitted from the study. The remaining 125 were included in the study.

The study consisted of pre- and post-treatment scores across six different measures, including:

Weight in kg
Body Fat
Fat Mass
Visceral Fat
Degree of Obesity

The length of follow up was between 1 month and 56 months, with an average follow-up of 8.46 months.

Results of the study:

We conducted a paired samples t-test on this data. We found that the difference between the two means for each of the measures was highly significant. In fact, it was .000 across all six. When we calculated the effect sizes, they were on the high end of small for each measure – ranging from 0.36 to 0.48. Nonetheless, although this raises questions about the psychological significance of the changes within the six measures, conclusions should be drawn in the context of the high level of statistical significance.

We did some further investigation of the data. We first looked at age, but found no relationship between the age of our participants and the amount of weight that they lost. It seems that people are just as capable of losing weight in their seventies as they are in their twenties.

We also investigated whether there was a relationship between the weight lost and the length of time between treatment and follow up. There was a slight, but weak linear relationship between the two. There was no relationship between the length of time to follow up and the average monthly weight loss.

Out of the 125 people who did the GMB, 117 lost weight. One person gained, although the average weight gain was 3.5kg and half gained less than 1kg.

Of the 117 who lost weight, the average weight lost was 9.67kg. The average weight lost per month was 1.8kg.

Based on the sample of clients that we analysed, 94% successfully lost weight. 60% lost more than 5kg, and 30% lost more than 10kg. Of those who lost between 0.1kg and 4.9kg, the average number of months between treatment and follow up was 5.7. Between 5kg and 9.9kg, the average months to follow up was 8.8. 10kg upwards the average follow up was 9.6 months. These latter two are close to the overall average number of months to follow up (8.46) suggesting that there is little or no relationship between weight lost and follow up time (i.e. the increased weight loss cannot be accounted for by extra time to lose the weight). Moreover, the average length of time to follow up for the eight individuals who gained weight was 15.75.

Weight Loss – Clinical Evidence

Evaluation of the study:

The strengths of this study are the large sample size, the consistency and accuracy of the measures, the considerable follow-up times in most cases, the fact that the same therapists (Marion and Martin) were used in every case.

The limitations of this study are that the follow up time was not consistent. Although graphs showed no particular relationship between the follow up time and the weight gained or lost, we did not analyse this part of the data in depth.

Another limitation might be the consistency of the treatment. The database of clients spanned a six year period, during which Marion was developing and refining the GMB. Although practice has not changed significantly, it is possible that some variation in the treatment delivery and quality may have occurred over time.

Proposed next steps:

A more in depth analysis of the raw data will now take place to identify and explore any interesting patterns. Some participants attended more than one follow up session – the relationship to number of follow ups and overall weight loss will be one of the patterns explored.

It would be useful to have a qualitative element to the study to supplement the numerical measures. As recommended by Dr Kalavana, a food diary would make a useful addition. It would also be useful to gain feedback from clients regarding their use of the pause button technique and its role in their dieting. Weight Loss Hypnosis – Clinical Evidence

Pause Button Therapy, TactileCBT and Gastric Mind Band are registered trademarks owned by Martin and Marion Shirran.

Additional information may be found at




The Administration Team


Views expressed within GHR published material and any conclusions reached are those of the authors

and not necessarily shared by other individuals, organisations or agencies

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