Skip to main content

MHFA Course Development

In order to improve the quality of the mental health first aid techniques being taught to the public, research has been carried out to develop guidelines on what constitutes best practice first aid, as informed by expert consensus (i.e., consensus-based guidelines). MHFA Course curriculum is based on these guidelines.

The Delphi Consensus Method

All MHFA Guidelines are produced following a systematic way of reaching consensus in a panel of experts. Use of expert consensus is a practical alternative to randomised controlled trials, which are often not feasible or ethical for evaluating specific first aid strategies. The end result is the development of guidelines that comprise first aid actions rated as important or essential by expert panels of professionals, consumers and carers.

  • Jorm AF. Using the Delphi expert consensus method in mental health research Australian New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry. 2015 October 49: 887-897. Full text.

This article gives an introductory overview of the use of the Delphi expert consensus method in mental health research. It explains the rationale for using the method, examines the range of uses to which it has been put in mental health research, and describes the stages of carrying out a Delphi study using examples from the literature.

The Development of MHFA Guidelines for English Speaking Countries

  • Bond KS, Jorm AF, Kelly CM, Kitchener BA, Morris SL, Masson RJ. Considerations when providing mental health first aid to an LGBTIQ person: a Delphi study. Advances in Mental Health. Jan 2017. Full text
  • Guajardo MGU, Slewa-Younan S, Santalucia Y, Jorm AF. Important considerations when providing mental health first aid to Iraqi refugees in Australia: a Delphi study. International Journal of Mental Health Systems. 2016 10:54. Full text
  • Bovopoulos N, Jorm AF, Bond KS, LaMontagne AD, Reavley NJ, Kelly CM, Kitchener BA, Martin A. Providing mental health first aid in the workplace: a Delphi consensus study. BMC Psychology. 2016 Aug 2;4. Full text
  • Bond KS, Jorm AF, Kitchener BA, Kelly CM, Chalmers KJ. Development of guidelines for family and non-professional helpers on assisting an older person who is developing cognitive impairment or has dementia: a Delphi expert consensus study. BMC Geriatrics. 2016 Jul 7;16. Full text
  • Bond KS, Jorm AF, Miller HE, Rodda SN, Reavley NJ, Kelly CM, Kitchener BA. How a concerned family member, friend or member of the public can help someone with gambling problems: a Delphi consensus study. BMC Psychology. 2016 Feb 3;4. Full text
  • Bond KS, Chalmers KJ, Jorm AF, Kitchener BA, Reavley NJ. Assisting Australians with mental health problems and financial difficulties: a Delphi study to develop guidelines for financial counsellors, financial institution staff, mental health professionals and carers. BMC Health Services Research. 2015 Jun 3;15. Full text
  • Ross AM, Kelly CM, Jorm AF. Re-development of mental health first aid guidelines for suicidal ideation and behaviour: a Delphi study. BMC Psychiatry. 2014 Sep 13;14. Full text
  • Ross AM, Kelly CM, Jorm AF. Re-development of mental health first aid guidelines for non-suicidal self-injury: a Delphi study. BMC Psychiatry. 2014 Aug 19;14:236-. Full text
  • Fischer JA, Kelly CM, Kitchener BA, Jorm AF. Development of Guidelines for Adults on How to Communicate With Adolescents About Mental Health Problems and Other Sensitive Topics. SAGE Open. 2013 Oct 1;3(4):2158244013516769. Full text
  • Ross AM, Hart LM, Jorm AF, Kelly CM, Kitchener BA. Development of key messages for adolescents on providing basic mental health first aid to peers: a Delphi consensus study. Early intervention in psychiatry. 2012 Aug 1;6(3):229-38. Abstract
  • Kingston AH, Morgan AJ, Jorm AF, Hall K, Hart LM, Kelly CM, Lubman DI. Helping someone with problem drug use: a Delphi consensus study of consumers, carers, and clinicians. BMC Psychiatry. 2011 Jan 5;11(1):1. Full text
  • Kelly CM, Jorm AF, Kitchener BA. Development of mental health first aid guidelines on how a member of the public can support a person affected by a traumatic event: a Delphi study. BMC psychiatry. 2010 Jun 21;10(1):1. Full text
  • Hart LM, Jorm AF, Paxton SJ, Kelly CM, Kitchener BA. First aid for eating disorders. Eating Disorders. 2009 Sep 29;17(5):357-84. Abstract
  • Kingston AH, Jorm AF, Kitchener BA, Hides L, Kelly CM, Morgan AJ, Hart LM, Lubman DI. Helping someone with problem drinking: mental health first aid guidelines-a Delphi expert consensus study. BMC Psychiatry. 2009 Dec 7;9(1):1. Full text
  • Kelly CM, Jorm AF, Kitchener BA. Development of mental health first aid guidelines for panic attacks: a Delphi study. BMC Psychiatry. 2009 Aug 10;9(1):1. Full text
  • Langlands RL, Jorm AF, Kelly CM, Kitchener BA. First aid for depression: a Delphi consensus study with consumers, carers and clinicians. Journal of Affective Disorders. 2008 Jan 31;105(1):157-65. Abstract
  • Langlands RL, Jorm AF, Kelly CM, Kitchener BA. First aid recommendations for psychosis: using the Delphi method to gain consensus between mental health consumers, carers, and clinicians. Schizophrenia Bulletin. 2008 May 1;34(3):435-43. Abstract
  • Kelly CM, Jorm AF, Kitchener BA, Langlands RL. Development of mental health first aid guidelines for deliberate non-suicidal self-injury: a Delphi study. BMC psychiatry. 2008 Jul 23;8(1):1. Full text
  • Kelly CM, Jorm AF, Kitchener BA, Langlands RL. Development of mental health first aid guidelines for suicidal ideation and behaviour: A Delphi study. BMC Psychiatry. 2008 Mar 18;8(1):1. Full text

The Development of MHFA Guidelines for Indigenous Australians

  • Armstrong G, Ironfield N, Kelly CM, Dart K, Arabena K, Bond K, Jorm AF. Re-development of mental health first aid guidelines for supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders who are engaging in non-suicidal self-injury. BMC Psychiatry. 2017; 17: 300. Full text
  • Bond KS, Dart KM, Jorm AF, Kelly CM, Kitchener BA, Reavley NJ. Assisting an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander person with gambling problems: a Delphi study. BMC Psychology. 2017; 5:27.
    Full text
  • Chalmers KJ, Bond KS, Jorm AF, Kelly CM, Kitchener BA, Williams-Tchen AJ. Providing culturally appropriate mental health first aid to an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander adolescent: development of expert consensus guidelines. International journal of mental health systems. 2014 Jan 28;8(1):1. Full text
  • Hart LM, Bourchier SJ, Jorm AF, Kanowski LG, Kingston AH, Stanley D, Lubman DI. Development of mental health first aid guidelines for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people experiencing problems with substance use: a Delphi study. BMC psychiatry. 2010 Oct 8;10(1):1. Full text
  • Hart LM, Jorm AF, Kanowski LG, Kelly CM, Langlands RL. Mental health first aid for Indigenous Australians: using Delphi consensus studies to develop guidelines for culturally appropriate responses to mental health problems. BMC psychiatry. 2009 Aug 3;9(1):1. Full text

The Development of MHFA Guidelines for providing MHFA in Asian Countries

  • De Silva S, Colucci E, Mendis J, Kelly CM, Jorm AF, Minas H. Suicide first aid guidelines for Sri Lanka: a Delphi consensus study. International Journal of Mental Health Systems. 2016 10:53. Full text
  • Colucci E, Kelly CM, Minas H, Jorm AF, Suzuki Y. Mental Health First Aid guidelines for helping a suicidal person: a Delphi consensus study in Japan. International journal of mental health systems. 2011 May 19;5(1):1. Full text
  • Colucci E, Kelly CM, Minas H, Jorm AF, Nadera D. Mental Health First Aid guidelines for helping a suicidal person: a Delphi consensus study in the Philippines. International journal of mental health systems. 2010 Dec 20;4(1):1. Full text
  • Colucci E, Kelly CM, Minas H, Jorm AF, Chatterjee S. Mental health first aid guidelines for helping a suicidal person: A Delphi consensus study in India. International Journal of Mental Health Systems. 2010 Feb 19. Full text
  • Jorm AF, Minas H, Langlands RL, Kelly CM. First aid guidelines for psychosis in Asian countries: A Delphi consensus study. International Journal of Mental Health Systems. 2008 Feb 21;2(1):1. Full text