Addressing mental health nursing workforce issues in Australia: A case study analysis

Catherine HUNGERFORD, Donna Hodgson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose
– The purpose of this paper is to report findings of a review of a unique program that has helped to address workforce needs and support Registered Nurses (RNs) working in a public mental health service in Australia. RNs are employed, facilitated to gain clinical experience in diverse mental health settings, and funded to study a graduate diploma in mental health nursing. Upon completion, there is no obligation to continue working for the health service, but most RNs have chosen to do so.

Design/methodology/approach
– A case study approach was taken to review the Program, using the focus group method of data collection. Past and present Program participants, and also their mentors and managers, were interviewed about the Program's benefits and challenges.

Findings
– The findings highlight the many successes of the Program and also suggest areas for development. One of these is the need to examine the curriculum content of the graduate diploma and consider requirements around clinical experience. Another area of concern is the “us/them” culture identified, which involves RNs who have no postgraduate tertiary qualifications marginalising RNs undertaking further study. Such a culture has the potential to undermine the profession locally and also more broadly
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)89-102
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Mental Health Training, Education and Practice
Volume8
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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Psychiatric Nursing
Health Manpower
nursing
nurse
mental health
Nurses
health service
graduate
Mentors
United States Public Health Service
teaching content
Mental Health Services
Focus Groups
Curriculum
qualification
Health Services
obligation
Mental Health
experience
profession

Cite this

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Addressing mental health nursing workforce issues in Australia: A case study analysis. / HUNGERFORD, Catherine; Hodgson, Donna.

In: Journal of Mental Health Training, Education and Practice, Vol. 8, No. 2, 2013, p. 89-102.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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