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Challenging the Status Quo ... Co-designing the future of child and youth mental health services with young people

Authors:

Margaret Hoyland ,

Children's Health Queensland Hospital & Health Service, AU
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Mikaela Moore,

Children's Health Queensland Hospital & Health Service, AU
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Leonie Sanderson,

Health Consumer Queensland, AU
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Kerry Geraghty

Children's Health Queensland Hospital & Health Service, AU
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Abstract

Introduction: The commitment to partnering with consumers and carers remains a stable priority for mental health services. This is evidenced by an emerging lived experience workforce. Research demonstrates that when people share their lived experience they can have a positive impact on the recovery journeys of others. Less clear is the role of young people in peer support roles, especially within child and youth mental health settings. There is no known dedicated child and youth mental health peer workforce operating within Queensland public mental health services. This paper will challenge the status quo and pose the question “why not”.

Furthermore, this paper will examine how a large child and youth mental health service has developed and sustained a model of meaningful consumer and carer participation for more than ten years. It will analyse the key success factors such as organisation readiness, mutuality and co-design practice. This paper will explore the trajectory of consumer and carer participation to the current work occurring to implement a dedicated youth mental health peer workforce. 

Practice Change Implemented: The experiences of consumers, carers, clinicians and managers over the past decade have driven many practice changes, including defining and refining meaningful consumer and carer particiaption and engagement, governance mechanisms, as well as policies and procedures. The paper will share the lived experience of a young person (co-author) who has transitioned from service user to valued mental health worker and will explore the key ingredients that have led to the organisational readiness to co-design, develop, implement and evaluate an innovative youth peer support worker model, using a participatory action research approach.

Aims: The paper aims to showcase integrated practice and present the voice of lived experience, to shift perceptions about the value of consumers and carers working in partnership with health professionals and improve integrated mental health services for young people and families.

Highlights: The paper will showcase lessons learned and common threads gleaned from young people, parents and carers as well as from clinicians and managers including:

Value your experiences

Listen to young people and what they want

Do not reinvent the wheel - learn from others

Perseverance is the key ingredient to change, closely followed by commitment and action

Co-designing services for young people with young people is hugely rewarding and improves service delivery and consumer outcomes and experiences

Furthermore, it will identify the success factors and limitations and barriers to working alongside young people and present the collaborative partnership between Children’s Health Queensland Hospital and Health Service and Health Consumers Queensland as we embark on co-designing the youth peer support workforce with young people.

Discussion and conclusions: Creating a valued youth peer workforce is more than merely transplanting a model into an organisation, you need to nurture and build the machinery that supports meaningful integration of the lived experience. It is believed that CYMHS has created this foundation and the establishment of a youth peer workforce is a much-desired outcome of years of preparatory work.

How to Cite: Hoyland M, Moore M, Sanderson L, Geraghty K. Challenging the Status Quo ... Co-designing the future of child and youth mental health services with young people. International Journal of Integrated Care. 2018;18(s1):81. DOI: http://doi.org/10.5334/ijic.s1081
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Published on 12 Mar 2018.

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