Families as Partners in Mental Health Care Training
Training for Mental Health Professionals
These modules provide information that mental health professionals need to know in order to work with family and other carers in the treatment and care of a person with mental health challenges. This means learning how to:
- listen to families;
- inform and educate families; and
- help families learn to understand and manage behaviours associated with mental health challenges.
In effect, these modules are about giving professionals the basic skills in how to train families in the most effective coping strategies.
It is unlikely that many students or professionals will have been given much training in how to work with and train families, hence the particular need for an emphasis on families and other carers in these modules.
The modules are designed to allow facilitators to choose from a range of topics that best suit their particular profession, and for the level of student (undergraduate, postgraduate, or workforce) training that is being undertaken.
The modules have been developed through the lens of the carers’ lived experience. We have synthesised our years of research of working with carers to identify the key areas they would like mental health professionals to help them with.
The modules were developed through consultation with carers and carer consultants, Bouverie Centre, the Victorian Transcultural Psychiatric Unit and various academics representing psychiatrists, social workers, nurses and occupational therapists. The concept for developing the material was driven by the passion of carers who want mental health professionals to know what carers and families need them to know in order to assist them.
The modules in the series cover the following topics:
Module 1: The case for family involvement
- Why work with families?
- Family work in mental health: the historical context.
- Evidence based research for working with families.
- Family involvement.
Module 2: Communication skills
- Communicating effectively with families/carers.
- Basic communication skills for mental health professionals to train families.
- Helping families access useful resources.
Module 3: Coping with behaviours of concern
- Help families/carers to understand and learn the most appropriate ways of coping.
- Educate carers how to best work with mental health professionals.
Module 4: The role of the family in recovery and rehabilitation
- Principles and guidelines for helping families move towards recovery of the person they care for.
- Mental health issues in the family’s own recovery.
Families as Partners in Mental Health Care: Training for Mental Health Professionals
The Consumer, Clinician and Carer Partnership uses the knowledge and experiences of consumers and carers with the knowledge and skills of professional workers. Working together will:
- achieve the best possible outcome for the consumer by co-ordinating treatment rehabilitation and care;
- involve families and friends as valuable resources for the consumer and the mental health service; and
- improve work satisfaction for clinicians and other mental health professionals.
Family members and consumers need to:
- have information, education, training and support to manage the illness and its effects; and
- work with mental health professionals and consumers in a shared partnership, with and understanding of the difficulties that mental health professionals face working in a mental health system.
Mental health professionals need to be trained to know how to:
- involve families in treatment and care programmes; and
- train families and consumers in evidence-based techniques of self-management that lead towards recovery.
These modules are designed to motivate more mental health professionals to adopt and implement family work as a part of core, comprehensive, integrated mental health care.
For more information on this training or to receive a brochure or presentation for your service or group, please contact the Tandem office on 8803 5555.