S16: A Foot In Both Camps

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By September 4, 2019 No Comments

Authors: Michele Orr, Kathy Collet

Year: 2019

Event: 2019 TheMHS Conference

Subject: A Foot In Both Camps

Type of resource: Conference Presentations and Papers


Michele is a Mental Health Nurse Practitioner and a mother of two adult children, one of whom lives with mental ill health. Her adult child is recovering with the support of the service in which she is employed.

Kathy is a Carer Consultant for Eastern Health and has been the prominent Carer voice in the Mental Health Program. Kathy has been integral in creating and maintaining many Carer programs in Eastern Health Mental Health, one of which is A Foot in Both Camps.
<>p>One in five people will be affected by mental ill health in their life time, hence chances are you have clinicians in your health service supporting a loved one who lives with mental ill health.
Carers want to feel safe to share their experiences in relation to the caring role. Clinicians who are carers are no different, yet accessing support groups in the community in which they practice may be a challenge; especially when the clinician's loved one is treated in the service in which the clinician works.
Clinicians at our service often prefer to support their loved one to stay in the region in which they live, which may be the region in which they work. A Foot in Both Camps offers a support group for those clinicians who find themselves caring for of a loved one who is recovering in the service in which they are employed.
We would like to share our experience in creating this group and the story so far, including what's worked and what we did differently.
Recently Eastern Health obtained a Family/Carer-led Workforce Innovation Grant from the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services to document and evaluate this group.

Learning Objectives

Learning Objective 1: People will be able to consider an innovative approach which promotes resilience for workers in their organisation whose loved one is recovering in the service in which they work.

Learning Objective 2: To consider promotion of the mental health of employees who are carers of loved ones living with mental illness through the development of an internal carer support group.

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