This Mental and Physical Health Partnership in Innovation and Education, MaP project, was funded by Health Education England North West London over a 2 year period from Autumn 2017 – Summer 2019. It focussed on:
• Identifying and recognising the skills, knowledge and expertise required of the current health and care workforce in North West London who support people with both mental and physical health needs.
• Developing the knowledge, skills and competence of the health and care workforce to support people with both mental and physical health needs
In order to achieve these aims over the 2 year period nine Multiprofessional Collaborative Learning Groups were developed in seven boroughs in North West London. Eleven partner organisations were originally involved in developing the MaP project. 102 learners attended the MCLGs, each of which comprised three (free to attend) half day face to face sessions over a 2 month period. The learners included Allied Health Professionals, nurses, GPs, support workers, care workers, care navigators, social workers and psychologists. The learners came from acute hospitals, tertiary centres, care homes, domiciliary care agencies, local authorities and primary care.
A board game has also been developed as part of the project to enable players, which can include health and care professionals as well as members of the public, to have structured learner-led conversations about the management of both mental and physical health needs, help build confidence, knowledge and skills and act as a legacy product beyond the time of the project.
The impact and outcomes of the MaP project were captured through:
• An online survey completed before and after attending the MCLGs.
• Evaluation forms completed at the end of each MCLG session.
The majority of participants attending the MCLGS reporting an increased level of understanding of:
• the roles of different health and social care staff in supporting those with mental and physical health needs
• diverse perspectives from across the workforce in supporting those with mental and physical health needs.
• the service user’s perspective of having both mental and physical health needs.
• how to deliver consistent messages about people with both mental and physical health needs between members of the health and care workforce.
• ways to promote health and wellbeing and the prevention of mental and physical health conditions.
• the benefits of early intervention in the prevention of mental and physical health conditions.
• approaches to managing transitions in the care of those with both mental and physical health conditions between different professionals, sectors and settings
Patient and public engagement was crucial throughout the project in advising on the themes for inclusion in the MCLGs and the board game and participation in a conference at the end of year 1.
Connections and networks have continued to be fostered between those attending the MCLGs. Attendees have found the sessions to be very valuable and an important space for discussion about this important topic area.
It is proposed that other health and care organisations across the UK would benefit from this approach in supporting their staff to manage those with both mental and physical health needs.
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