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Improving access for Asian mental health consumers

Improving access for Asian mental health consumers

A responsive mental health and addiction service model for Asian people


What is the 'responsive mental health and addiction service model for Asian people'?

The 'Responsive Mental Health and Addiction Service Model for Asian People' is a five-year action plan forming part of the wider Waitemata District Health Board (DHB) Mental Health & Addiction Service Development Plan (2010-2015). The action plan aims to address the growing Asian population and the inequalities impacting on access and quality of care.


What are we trying to achieve?

The main aims of our plan are for our:

  • Workforce to have the ability and confidence to work cross-culturally to better serve our Asian population
  • Services to be integrated, culturally responsive and appropriate to respond to the diverse nature of the Asian population
  • Asian Communities to have confidence in Waitemata DHB mental health and addiction services

What did we find?

Waitemata DHB caters for a culturally diverse population with the Asian population making up nearly one fifth of our total population [1]. A local study has shown that there is low utilisation of our Mental Health services by the Asian population, and presentations to these services are mostly for acute situations [2].

The reasons identified for underutilisation of Mental Health services were:

  • fear of stigmatisation
  • lack of language proficiency
  • inadequate knowledge of available services
  • cultural differences in assessment and treatment of mental health (between NZ and countries of origin)
  • delays in contact

  1. Census 2013.
  2. "Mental Health Issues for Asians in New Zealand". Ho, Au, Bedford, Cooper, 2003

 

What have we done?

The Asian Mental Health & Addiction Governance Group was formed to oversee the action plan and to provide guidance and advice on the various projects. To date the following accomplishments have been achieved against the plan:


Workforce development

  • Provision of CALD cultural competency courses to Waitemata DHB mental health, non-government organisation (NGO) and primary health organisation (PHO) clinicians [over 2,400 completed since 2010]
  • Provision of mental health training for interpreters [144 completed since 2010]
  • Piloting of Cross-Cultural Psychiatrist Training programme for five bilingual registrars nationally [2014-2015]
  • Created business card-sized guidelines on working with interpreters [2015]

CALD range of courses
Cross cultural resource for healthcare professionals working with CALD clients  Toolkit for staff working in a CALD environment
Some of the range of online and face-to-face CALD courses and resources available for the healthcare workforce
[View more about CALD courses and resources at www.eCALD.com]


Holistic care

  • Best Practice Principles: CALD Cultural Competency Standards & FrameworkDevelopment of “Best Practice Principles: CALD Cultural Competency Standards & Framework” for Waitemata DHB [2013]
  • Stocktake of screening and assessment tools completed [2012]
  • Development of face-to-face and e-learning resources for working with Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) Clients:
    • Working in a Mental Health Context with CALD Clients [2012]
    • CALD Family Violence Resource [2014]
    • CALD Children & Women Resource [underway in 2015]

CALD resource for Working with Asian Clients in Mental Health  CALD resource for
New CALD resources for "Working with Asian Clients in Mental Health" and "CALD Family Violence"
[View more about CALD courses and resources at www.eCALD.com]


Prevention and early intervention

  • Delivered educational sessions to increase mental health awareness through Chinese Parents & Youth Seminar [2012] and the Korean Parents & Youth Seminar [2013, 2014]
  • Delivered cultural informative workshops for North Shore counsellors [2012]
  • Muslim Mental Health Awareness & Collaboration Project completed [2014]

Culturally responsive services

  • Conducted consumer satisfaction surveys for the Asian Mental Health Service [2010, 2014]
  • Mental Health Real-Time Feedback survey – translation of survey questions to encourage uptake by Asian consumers [2014-2015]
  • Investigation of causes of late presentations by Asian people to inpatient mental health services within 24 hours following referral; and recommending approaches to improve access [2014-2015]

Mental Health Real-Time Feedback translated into Chinese
Mental Health Real-Time Feedback survey translated into Chinese


Did we make a difference?

We have developed an integrated, collaborative and responsive approach to engaging with Asian consumers, community groups as well as primary, secondary and NGO stakeholders. This model applies best practice principles, and coupled with continuous improvement will:

  • improve service quality (for Mental Health & Addictions)
  • reduce inequalities / ensure equitable access for Asian people

We are making a difference through: 

  • increasing workforce cultural competency through CALD course uptake and registrar cross-cultural training
  • continuing to improve the quality of interpreting service through interpreter mental health training and introduction of the new guidelines card
  • increasing mental health awareness in Asian communities through seminars / workshops
  • improving service responsiveness through evaluation of consumer survey results (e.g. Asian Mental Health Service consumer satisfaction survey)

 CALD course uptake by healthcare workforce in Waitemata DHB region

Asian Mental Health Service consumer satisfaction survey results 2014


Where to from here?

We are developing a further five-year plan as part of the Waitemata Stakeholder Mental Health & Addiction Strategic Plan (2016-2020) aligned with the “Rising to the Challenge – The Mental Health and Addiction Service Development Plan 2012-2017” to continue with the focus on developing or enhancing the following applying best practice principles:

  • a culturally capable and supported workforce
  • integrated, culturally responsive and appropriate mental health and addiction services
  • awareness of Asian people to recognise and respond to mental health and addiction issues

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