It's different in different areas, but I think the process generally goes something like:
- GP referral or self-referral - They get in touch and go through some questions with you and/or send forms for you to fill in - assessment appointment - either group work or individual work, usually 6-8 weeks, usually CBT-based
I think it can be helpful.
Someone else might be along to give better information; I can only say that the above is what happened at mine, and other people I've talked to have had similar experiences.
I've just started CBT with IAPT. 6 sessions of 30 mins. First 10 mins spent going through the depression/anxiety questionnaire leaves 20 mins to discuss issues. Confused as they work on the control thoughts basis and challenge not accept yet mindfulness and other anti anxiety strategies focus on acceptance.