The adaptation and implementation of the Health Improvement Profile to Australian standards in public mental health settings

Trudy Brown, Alexis May, Matthew Beverley-Stone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


What is known on the subject?: The Health Improvement Profile (HIP) is a one-page form developed in the United Kingdom as a tool for mental health nurses to assess service user's physical health needs. The HIP screens service users’ physical health and provides recommendations that clinicians can provide service users with in order to improve their physical health. There was evidence supporting the effectiveness of the HIP; however, the majority of HIP studies to date involve the screening tool being completed by nurses. In Australia, a large proportion of mental health clinicians providing case management to service users in community settings are not nurses. What the paper adds to existing knowledge?: This paper shows that the HIP can be adjusted to suit the needs of Australian service users and can be utilized by clinicians from a variety of disciplines. It also shows that both clinicians and Australian service users find the HIP helpful and argues for it being made available for all service users. It has clearly shown a need to target flu vaccine programmes at service users. What are the implications for practice?: The HIP has been shown to be a suitable and acceptable screening tool for different clinicians to assess multiple lifestyle risk factors at once, which can be used across different diagnoses and settings. This study, for example, demonstrated a need to focus on promoting the flu vaccine and smoking cessation, as well as encouraging service users to visit eye and dental health services. Abstract: Introduction Health Improvement Profile (HIP) studies to date primarily focused on the screening tool being completed by nurses. This paper explores the HIP in two different settings, with an emphasis on expanding physical health roles for all mental health clinicians. Aim The aim of the present study was to adapt the HIP to Australian standards and implement it at a large mental health service. Method This is an evaluation of the implementation of the HIP over a two-month pilot period. Clinicians and service users were surveyed on their experience of the HIP. Results The community team completed the HIP with 34 (15%) service users. The inpatient unit completed the HIP with 137 (54%) service users. Results from the HIP clearly show priority areas for health interventions. Feedback from clinicians and service users was predominately positive. Discussion We found the HIP to be an acceptable screening tool that encompasses multiple lifestyle risk factors. Implications for practice This study clearly demonstrates the utility of the HIP as a workable and acceptable screening tool with real world applicability. In our pilot, for example, we identified the need for the promotion of influenza vaccinations amongst service users, as well as the ongoing need to target smoking cessation and substance use.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)628-639
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2020
Externally publishedYes


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