To date there has been some debate about how to translate MHFA training into meaningful interventions in the workplace. It is unanimously agreed that the content of MHFA courses (i.e. training people to recognise and help address issues such as depression, anxiety, self-harm and even suicide) is extremely valuable and important; the difficulty lies in measuring its impact and supporting staff in this role.
IOSH have recently commissioned a study (called MENTOR) in an attempt to shed some light on this subject, and indeed it has found many positive examples of excellent practice, where organisations have put in place supportive strategies and set clear boundaries for their MHFA trained staff. However this is the not always the case, as often some help is needed in the implementation of such a relatively new health / wellbeing programme.
MHFA England has responded by saying that it is encouraged by the latest research, and has committed to do more to offer support to MHFA trained staff by strengthening existing guidance on the boundaries and their role within the workplace.
IOSH is also offering new resources to its members, in the form of guidance notes and tools, along with information sheets for organisations about how to integrate MHFA trained staff into a wider system of support.
So how can we help?
Claire Dalton is a Chartered Member of IOSH and also a MHFA England approved trainer; Live for Work can help you with your MHFA training, and by assisting your organisation to set up a suitable and meaningful support programme –email us for further information:
Our next public MHFA England course is running on the 14th and 15th February in Congleton – click here for details:
The future is brighter with better Mental Health for all!