Supported decision-making relating to mental illness

Supported decision-making for people diagnosed with severe mental illness and family carers

This project explored options for people diagnosed with severe mental illness to receive support in making decisions about care and treatment in order to fulfil Australia’s human rights obligations under the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The project’s interdisciplinary approach was developed in consultation and partnership with the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and five major NGOs supporting mental health service and delivery in Victoria.

The study focused on people diagnosed with psychosis, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, family carers, and mental health practitioners and led to the design of two innovative online resources illustrating how supported decision-making can enhance the process of personal recovery from mental illness. One resource focuses on the experiences of people with mental illness, and the second explores experiences of family carers.

Evidence of the significance of this research includes the incorporation of project findings into the forthcoming DHHS annual report into Victoria’s Mental Health Services (2015-16), and in Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP) training to improve mental health workforce capacity to support people diagnosed with mental illness and family carers in making informed decisions about their treatment and other aspects of life.

Chief Investigators
Associate Professor Renata Kokanovic, Professor Bernadette Mcherry, Professor Helen Herrman and D Lisa Brophy (University of Melbourne)

Funder
Australian Research Council Linkage Project Scheme

Other Partners
Victorian Department of Health and Human Services, Mind Australia, Wellways (former Mental Illness Fellowship), Neami National, Victorian Mental Illness Awareness Council, Tandem Carers

Date of Award
2014-2017

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