S97: Diversity responsiveness and the cultural portfolio holder role in improving multicultural consumer experiences of mental health services.

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By September 27, 2017 No Comments

Authors: Jan Cansu Kilicaslan, Harvey Tuck, Brigid Ryan

Year: 2017

Event: 2017 TheMHS Conference

Subject: Service Systems, Delivery, Implementation,Community, Culture, Society,Reducing Stigma and Discrimination

Type of resource: Conference Presentations and Papers

Abstract: This snapshot presents clinical mental health service collaboration with Victorian Transcultural Mental Health (VTMH), a state-wide education and service development unit, forming a group of portfolio holders for the purposes of leading cultural diversity initiatives across that service. The St. Vincent’s Mental Health Cultural Portfolio Holder (CPH) network is made up of consumer and carer representatives, clinicians, psychiatrists, and project coordinators. The program addresses structural challenges and responds to a more nuanced understanding of the social determinants of health, intersectional issues, diversity, and individual mental health experiences. While seeking to provide opportunities to work in unique and effective ways to improve cultural safety in mental health services, CPHs have identified a number of limitations that are represented at systemic and organisational levels, leading to developments in diversity responsiveness which expand well beyond language, ethnicity and geographical origins. Supported by VTMH, the CPH program is designed to assist organisational capacity to implement diversity-responsive strategies. Areas highlighted in this discussion include historical markers, strategies used to embed cultural reflection into everyday mental health practice including: service review and planning, Cultural Responsiveness training, cultural conversations, secondary consultations, and initiatives that promote cultural safety. We explore how the group has evolved, shrunk, grown and adapted in response to a range of contextual factors. This service development program is in line with current Commonwealth and State Mental Health initiatives, prioritising the core value of diversity-inclusive approaches with consumers.

Learning Objectives
Learning Objective 1: Audiences will better understand the origins of the Victorian mental health Cultural Portfolio Holder program, and how it works to respond to mental health legislation, policies, standards and frameworks

Learning Objective 2: Within the context of a diverse Australian population, this topic is central to all forms of mental health practice, as it tackles the challenges related to diversity responsiveness in clinical care.

Victorian Transcultural Mental Health (2016). Responding to diversity: an evaluation of VTMH Programs and Services 2013-2015. Fitzroy, Victoria: VTMH
Colucci, E., Chopra, P., McDonough, S., Kouzma, N., & Minas, H. (2014). Improving cultural responsiveness in mental health services: Development of a consensus around the role of Cultural Portfolio Holders. International Journal of Culture and Mental Health, 7(3), 339-355.
Lewis, J & Van Regteren Altena, M (2013). Improving mental health service access for people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds – a service development approach. In Robertson, S, Chapman, C, Kellehear, K, Everett, M, Lane, A, Cassaniti, M, Peters, J, Prowse, L, Hilton, M, Farhall, J, Grigg, M, Forging the Future, Contemporary TheMHS in Mental Health Services, Melbourne Conference Proceedings 2013, TheMHS Conference, Melbourne, Victoria.

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