S31: Preparing an adult mental health unit for a peer workforce: Challenges, learning and successes.

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By September 21, 2017 No Comments

Authors: Fiona Burton, Melanie Ryan, Jesse Cross, Kirsten Iosefo

Year: 2017

Event: 2017 TheMHS Conference

Subject: Service Systems, Delivery, Implementation,Funding – Changing Models, Systems,Lived Experience, Recovery

Type of resource: Conference Presentations and Papers

Abstract: The Victorian Government provided statewide funding to area mental health services to develop a peer workforce as a part of the ‘Expanding Post Discharge Support Initiative’ (EPDSI). The initiative was aimed at providing additional support to consumers and carers on discharge from mental health in-patient units. Drivers for the EPDSI included the significant demand on adult mental health in-patient services; the need to improve outcomes for consumers as they transition from adult acute in-patient mental health services to community, the desire to improve continuity of care for consumer and the growing evidence related to the positive impacts of peer work for consumers, families and carers. A number of challenges, learnings and successes were identified in the pre-implementation phase and post implementation of the expanding post discharge peer program for staff, supervisors and peer workers that are useful to acknowledge to assist in further development of the peer workforce on an inpatient unit.

Learning Objectives
Learning Objective 1: Participants will have an understanding of some of the challenges of implementing a peer program on an adult mental health inpatient unit, the importance of clearly defining the roles of the peer workforce prior to program implementation and recording tools to effectively evaluate the program.

Learning Objective 2: The implementation of a peer program is particularly relevant to services, given the changing landscape in mental health, moving from strictly clinical or medical models of practice, towards recovery and interventions, including peer work.

Intentional Peer Support America “Preparing your organisation for the expanding post discharge support initiative’, Department of Human Services, July 2016

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