Home' Southern Health News : June 2016 Contents Mental Health Clinical
David Hains will travel to
Canada on a scholarship
study tour later this year.
BY SARAH KOLAR
A passion to learn more about
strengths-based positive approaches
to mental health care -- across
emergency, inpatient and community
mental health settings -- will see
Flinders Medical Centre (FMC) mental
health nurse David Hains visit
experts in Canada later this year.
David, who is a Clinical Practice Consultant in
the FMC Emergency Department (ED), was one
of two Southern Adelaide Local Health Network
(SALHN) staff to be awarded a $12,000 SA
Premier's Nursing and Midwifery Scholarship
at the 2016 South Australian Nursing and
Midwifery Excellence Awards (see story on the
In October, he will spend more than two weeks
visiting health services in Calgary and other
parts of Alberta in Canada to investigate how
they create a strengths-based approach using
Solution Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT).
"SFBT is a positive approach to therapy, focusing
on strengths and potential rather than focusing
on the problems and deficits that have brought
the consumer to seek help," David said.
"The assessment process is certainly important,
but it has one major drawback with the
consumer forced to focus on the problem.
"When we focus on a problem the problem
will start to look bigger than it actually
is, which will result in the consumer
actually feeling worse and not better.
"By focusing on the solution or the goal a better
future becomes visible and the consumer will
see that it's achievable."
The effectiveness of SFBT has been proven in
working with a wide variety of illnesses and
situations such as anxiety, depression, eating
disorders, suicidal thinking, psychosis, substance
abuse, chronic illness and terminal illness, and
in addition has proven to be a very cost efficient
David was first introduced to brief therapy in
2002 while working in the Noarlunga Hospital
"At the time, a colleague of mine John
Strachan (who was then a social worker
but is now the Outer South Mental Health
Manager) introduced the therapy into
the Noarlunga Hospital ED," he said.
"By bringing this therapy into an ED,
he was doing something that no one
else was doing in Australia."
From there David started to learn the power and
efficiency of brief therapy, along with the art of
For the past two years, David has been running
workshops introducing SFBT to nurses and allied
health clinicians across the south. On his return
from Canada, he hopes to share his learnings
with other clinicians across SALHN.
Suzanne to embark
on study tour for
Southern Adelaide Local Health
Network (SALHN) Parkinson's disease
Specialist Nurse Suzanne Sharrad
will travel abroad later this year to
learn more about sustainable models
of nursing care to improve outcomes
for Parkinson's disease patients,
after recently being awarded an SA
Premier's Nursing and Midwifery
Suzanne, who will travel from August
to October this year, will visit Tasmania,
Western Australia, London, the Netherlands,
United States and Canada, to investigate,
observe, explore and learn from well-
established national and international
Parkinson's disease nursing services.
In Australia in 2014, a conservative estimate
of people living with Parkinson's disease
was 69,208, which equates to one in every
340 people. The prevalence of the condition
is expected to rise in the future, in line
with the country's ageing population.
In 2015, the State Government recognised
and responded to the urgent needs
and requirements of people living with
Parkinson's disease and their carers by
providing funding for four permanent
nursing specialist positions in South
Australia for the first time. Suzanne is one
of these nurses.
"This study tour will reap benefits for
all specialist Parkinson's nurses in South
Australia because I will pass on what I
learn about how national and international
experts provide care to those who have
Parkinson's disease and their carers
while incorporating other important
aspects of the role including education,
management and research," Suzanne said.
"For SALHN, this tour will enable us to
establish a best practice model of care
that includes nurse-led clinics as a way to
improve patient outcomes by providing
evidence based, comprehensive assessment
of the complex motor and non-symptoms
associated with Parkinson's disease and
implementation of a goal centred, efficient
multidisciplinary management plan."
A positive approach
to mental health care
14 / JUNE 2016 / SOUTHERN HEALTH NEWS
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