Annual Conference

SF14 Choice bits from the speakers’ corner: Trauma in the mental health workforce

By February 20, 2014 No Comments
  • “We need to build the human rights agenda into the structure of all mental health services and the training of practitioners.”
  • “For nurses, it is extremely valuable to have the support of peer and managing nurses. Yet this does require an investment of time.”
  • “We have a risk-averse system which is respectful of neither the autonomy of the consumer, nor the autonomy of the clinicians. This must be balanced around trauma, and mental health services built in such a way that it will reduce the chance that consumers or staff will experience trauma during the delivery of services.”
  • “The activity based funding model doesn’t address the issue appropriately. Everyone knows it’s a problem – we want to be able to contract out services, but unfortunately the nature of the service provided in a community context is less certain.”
  • The extent of contracting out leads to difficulty in maintaining stability of programs –  “If you do a good job for a number of years, you’re not innovative, and so you’re not competitive.”
  • “Pushing to the lower end of the costs spectrum… it’s difficult to argue that you can do it better for more, when someone says I can do it the same for less.”
  • “In such an environment, only adaptable and effective contract organisations are able to survive in the long term.”
  • “Unless we define what it is that’s being purchased, it’s easy to say it should cost less, because there is nothing defined that the service has to provide. Over-specificity on the other hand may block innovations.”
  • “Government can contract out the jobs, but it cannot contract out the responsibility. So, what happens to responsibility when you contract all the services out? … It disappears, without a function in government to maintain it, by some unique situation. Mental health is a weak competitor for ongoing funds.”
  • “We need to educate politicians about the economic burden of mental health problems.”