Mental Health First Aid
Mental Health First Aid Canada
About one in five Canadians is living with a mental health problem in any given year.* Some mental health problems are more common than many physical health problems. While people often know a lot about physical illness, most people have
little knowledge about mental illness. This lack of understanding promotes fear and stigma. It prevents people from seeking help early and seeking the most effective help. It also keeps people from providing appropriate support to friends, colleagues, family members and people around them, simply because they do not know how. MHFA Canada teaches mental health first aid skills. The course does not train people to be therapists, counsellors or mental health professionals. The philosophy behind MHFA Canada is that mental health crises, such as suicide, may be avoided through early intervention. If crises do arise, then members of the public can take action that may reduce the harm that could result.
The MHFA Canada course has been reviewed by Canadian experts and provides guidelines for giving first aid. MHFA Canada encourages first aiders to take additional training in suicide prevention, physical first aid and dealing with substance-related problems. MHFA Canada content adheres to the first aid guidelines being established by MHFA Australia. The guidelines cover a range of developing mental disorders and mental health crisis situations. These guidelines were produced using the Delphi method, which is a way to achieve consensus from a panel of experts. The first aid actions in the guidelines have been rated as important or essential by expert panels of professionals, consumers and care providers. To date, guidelines have been produced for depression, psychosis, deliberate self-injury, and suicidal thoughts and behaviours.
Michelle Seibel is a faculty member is the School of Nursing at Thompson Rivers University, and is also currently the Chairperson for the Health Care Assistant and Practical Nursing Programs. She has been involved at the provincial and national levels as an advocate for individuals and families experiencing mental health problems since 2010. She is passionate about improving the lives of those who experience mental health problems and believes that education of the general public about these health issues is an important way to decrease stigma, improve recognition of and response to mental health problems, and ultimately increase the quality of life for all.
- Monday, May 14, 2018
- 9:00am - 4:00pm
- Kamloops Campus