A recent episode of SBS Insight highlighted the high rates of mental illness within the healthcare industry and the unrelenting pressure felt by doctors and nurses.
Professionals in the healthcare industry face multiple specific stressors, such as long working hours, short breaks and everyday pressures along with perceived barriers in relation to being open about mental health concerns. These perceived barriers, including concerns over confidentiality, fear of being seen as weak, and misconceptions in relation to mandatory reporting, reduce the number of people that seek help, thereby increasing the impact on individuals.
At Mental Health First Aid Australia we believe that these conversations are important for the community to have to improve understanding of mental illness and reduce stigma. While we cannot speak for all areas that need to be addressed in the health industry, we strongly believe that providing Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) training during tertiary studies is necessary, and may also benefit students in their future careers.
In light of this, MHFA Australia has developed two specialised courses, MHFA for Nursing Students and MHFA for Medical Students, to meet the specific needs of the industry. The aim of these courses is to increase the likelihood that medical and nursing students will be able support their peers to seek help for mental health problems. These courses have been shown to improve mental health literacy and mental health first aid skills, and reduce stigma in nursing and medical students.
Watch the full Insight episode Critical Care.