The recently released National Mental Health Core Capabilities contain some key guiding principles relating to working in the mental health area, that closely reflect the approach adopted by Make a Difference. These include:
Principle 1: Person-centred
Principle 2: Responsive to Families and Carers
Families, carers and support people play a critical and often unacknowledged role in enabling people with mental health problems and mental illness to live and participate meaningfully in the community.
Principle 3: Recovery-focussed
Recovery-oriented mental health practice means:
• uniqueness of the individual
• real choices (which includes achieving a balance between duty of care and support for an individual to take positive risks)
• attitudes and rights (which includes listening to, learning from and acting on communications from the individual and their carers)
• dignity and respect
• partnership and communication (which includes acknowledging each individual is an expert on their own life)
• measuring progress towards recovery
Principle 4: Evidence-based
We should build on existing health workforce innovations that have been trialled and proven elsewhere. Our approach also needs to draw upon best practice and research as a means of ensuring ongoing safety and quality in the delivery of services by the mental health workforce.
Principle 5: Flexible
This requires an acknowledgment that our ability to meet growing and changing demands from people using services can only be achieved by being flexible.