S53: Rural & Remote Services

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By October 5, 2023 No Comments

Authors: Omolewa 'Lola Erinle, Michael Olasoji, Kirsti Haracz, David Schmidt, Kerith Duncanson, Millie Davey, Heather Fendler, Carol-Ann Stanborough, Lee Martinez, Chloe Fletcher, Kuda Muyambi & Michael Marsh

Year: 2023

Event: 2023 The MHS conference - Adelaide

Subject: Rural & Remote Services

Type of resource: Conference Presentations and Papers

Presentation 1: Making Collaboration Between Mental Health Clinicians and Carers Real in a Rural Psychiatric Hospital.
Authors: Omolewa 'Lola Erinle, Michael Olasoji, Kirsti Haracz, David Schmidt & Kerith Duncanson
Mental health legislation, policies and practice standards have increasingly recognised the need for carer involvement in care delivery to mental health consumers. Feedback from informal carers and health service reporting suggest a disparity in perceptions of the degree to which carer involvement occurs in practice. This disparity may in part be due to different understandings among mental health professionals and informal carers of what constitutes collaboration. This presentation provides an overview of a study that explored mental health professionals and informal carers understanding of collaboration in mental health care delivery.
This qualitative descriptive study used focus groups to generate data regarding informal carers and clinicians’ perceptions of collaboration in a rural mental health service. Data were generated through separate focus groups for carers and clinicians and analysed to identify themes.
Findings provide insight into the commonalities and differences of informal carers and mental health clinicians perceptions of collaboration. Barriers and facilitators to genuine collaboration were also identified. These study findings could inform mental health service delivery through development of service models that promote genuine collaboration between mental health clinicians, consumers, and their carers. Findings could also inform practices in carer support services and mental health clinicians’ education.
Learning Objective
This presentation will describe a research study that examines mental health clinicians and informal carers perspectives of collaboration, barriers, and facilitators to effective collaboration in a rural mental health service. The implications of these findings for service delivery and health professional education will also be discussed.
Olasoji, M., Maude, P., & McCauley, K. (2016). A journey of discovery: Experiences of carers of people with mental illness seeking diagnosis and treatment for their relative. Issues in Mental Health Nursing, 37: (4), 219-228.
van de Bovenkamp, H. M., & Trappenburg, M. J. (2010). The relationship between mental health workers and family members. Patient Education and Counselling, 80(1), 120-125.

Presentation 2: Share: Local community engagement group for socially isolated people living with severe mental illness.
Authors: Millie Davey & Heather Fendler
Australian Faith Community Nursing (AFCN) model enables people with chronic mental illness to develop long term social connections and authentic relationships. Effective partnerships were used to create a social group where people gained a sense of belonging and developed life purpose and meaning, which have sustained positive impacts on mental health. We achieved this by using community health model that included committed volunteers, existing salaried health service staff and faith community support.
Originally established 13 years ago in partnership with AFCNA, Adelaide Hills Community Mental Health Service (AHCMHS), various local faith, and other community stakeholders, ‘Share’ illustrates effective primary health care as defined by the World Health Organization (WHO)/UNICEF definition; “…whole-of-society approach to health that aims at ensuring the highest possible level of health and well-being and their equitable distribution by focusing on people’s needs as early as possible along the continuum from health promotion and disease prevention to treatment, rehabilitation and palliative care, and as close as feasible to people’s everyday environment”¹.
‘Share’ is an evaluated, sustainable, community-led mental health approach to the shortage and maldistribution of doctors, nurses, and allied health professionals, particularly in rural and remote areas². We will discuss how the model was developed and how it can be advanced into other communities to continue its sustainable impact.
Learning Objective
How to tap into existing resources to meet local community health care needs in ways that are cost effective, sustainable, innovative, and reproducible. Improved quality of life, cost savings and health improvements from the early program evaluations, which have been maintained for over a decade, demonstrating the framework’s sustainability.
1. WHO and UNICEF. A vision for primary health care in the 21st century: towards universal health coverage and the Sustainable Development Goals. Geneva: World Health Organization and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), 2018 (WHO/HIS/SDS/2018.X). Licence: CCD BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO.
2. Australian Government, Commonwealth of Australia, Department of Health. (2022). Future focused primary health care: Australia’s Primary Health Care 10 Year Plan 2022-2032, page 7

Presentation 3: Evaluating the Hearing Voices that are Distressing simulation workshop among rural and remote health workers.
Authors: Carol-Ann Stanborough, Lee Martinez, Chloe Fletcher, Kuda Muyambi & Michael Marsh
Evidence suggests that health care professionals are often uncomfortable talking with people about hearing voices, despite recommendations that mental health consumers be provided with opportunities to freely discuss their experiences (Coffey and Hewitt, 2008). The Hearing Voices that are Distressing (HVD) simulation (Oor, 2018) was originally developed by voice-hearers and provides participants with first-hand experience of what it might be like to hear voices that are distressing (Bradshaw et al., 2021). This presentation describes an evaluation of the HVD simulation workshop presented to health workers (n=62) at four locations in rural and remote South Australia (Murray Bridge, Berri, Port Augusta, and Whyalla). Change in empathy was assessed using the revised Kiersma-Chen Empathy Scale (Aronson, 2021). Focus groups and individual interviews (n=9) were conducted at 3-months post-simulation to explore participants’ experiences of the simulation and learnings for their practice. Significant increases in both cognitive and affective empathy were observed following participation in the simulation (p’s <.001). Participants reflected that having practical experience helped them develop an understanding of voice-hearers’ experiences. Involving lived experience perspectives was highly valued. Key learnings for practice included the need to explore consumers’ experiences with them and be flexible and thoughtful in their practice.
Learning Objective
There are workforce shortages in the health sector across rural and remote Australia and those working in this field are often expected to be ‘generalist’ practitioners. The Hearing Voices that are Distressing simulation provides participants with an opportunity to learn how to be more effective mental health care providers.
Aronson, B. D. (2021). An update on the Kiersma Chen Empathy Scale (KCES): Creating the KCES-R. American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education, 10, 8685. https://doi.org/10.5688/ajpe8685.
Bradshaw, T., Blakemore, A., Wilson, I., Fitzsimmons, M., Crawford, K., & Mairs, H. (2021). A systematic review of the outcomes of using voice hearing simulation in the education of health care professionals and those in training. Nurse Education Today, 96, 104626. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nedt.2020.104626

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