Mental Health for the Young & their Families in Victoria is a collaborative partnership between mental health & other health professionals, service users & the general public.
PO Box 206,
Parkville, Vic 3052
PROJECT EVIDENCE for Prevention of Mental Disorders. The project coordinator is Dr Allan Mawdsley. The version can be amended by consent. If you wish to contribute to the project, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
The author of the section on Children in detention is Professor Louise Newman. The author of the section on Children of parents with mental illness is Dr Vicki Cowling.
 Indicated Programs are those for young people who will inevitably develop mental disorders unless there is preventive intervention.
[3 b.] Psychological factors
i Children in detention
ii Children of Parents with Mental Illness
[3 b ii ] Children of Parents with Mental Illness
Children whose parents suffer mental illness have significantly higher rates of emotional problems than general community prevalence. The stresses they experience are often unrecognized by clinicians who work with their parents.
It is recommended that a family impact assessment be undertaken of all adult patients with mental illness to ensure that those with children are linked with services which can support the family and respond to the needs of children and their parents, as a family group and as individuals. It is further recommended that there should be family intervention planning, a family recovery focus, and active collaboration, communication and coordination between services and families.
The Family Talk program is a family-based program designed to increase depressed parents’ focus on their children, to increase children’s understanding of parental depression, and ultimately to reduce depressive symptoms in children of depressed parents, and follow-up data indicates the program provides long-standing benefits.
Beardslee, W. R., Gladstone, T. R. G., Wright, E. J., & Cooper, A. B. (2003). A family-based approach to the prevention of depressive symptoms in children at risk: Evidence of parental aned child change. Pediatrics, 112, e119-e131.
Beardslee, W. R., Wright, E. J., Gladstone, T. R. G., & Forbes, P. (2007). Long-term effects from a randomized trial of two public health preventive interventions for parental depression. Journal of Family Psychology, 21(4), 703-713.
The Let’s Talk About Children intervention is designed to be implemented in primary health and specialized psychiatric services. It is a brief child-focused discussion between the parent with a psychiatric disorder and a clinician, aimed at helping parents find ways to support children themselves, draw on the family’s network, and access other supports.
Solantaus, T. S., Toikka, S., Alasuutari, M., Beardslee, W. R., & E.J., P. (2009). Safety, feasibility and family experiences of preventive interventions for children and families with parental depression. International Journal of Mental Health Promotion, 11(4), 15-24.
Solantaus, T. S., Paavonen, E. J., Toikka, S., & Punamäki, R. (2010). Preventive interventions in families with parental depression: children’s psychosocial symptoms and prosocial behaviour. European Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 19(12), 883-892.
4. Several Australian states and territories have responded to the needs of families with children where parents have a mental illness, either through government departments, or non-government organisations. Refer to Department of Health websites for information.
5. Online training for service providers is available at: http://www.copmi.net.au/professionals-organisations/how-can-i-help/professional-development/elearning-courses
6. Articles presenting research related to young people, parents and families is available at: http://www.copmi.net.au/professionals-organisations/what-works/research-articles
7. Resources –
Parental mental illness is a family matter – Special issue of MJA Open Supplement:
Reupert, A., Maybery, D., Nicholson, J., Göpfert, M., & Seeman, M. V. (Eds.). (2015). Parental psychiatric disorder. Distressed parents and their families. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
FaPMI Coordinators– Local support for your service
As part of the FaPMI service development strategy (described below), FaPMI coordinators have been embedded within the eleven area mental health services (AMHS) in Victoria (or another suitable community program).
FaPMI coordinators champion and organise activities within the catchment area of their employing service. They work closely with mental health services and network partners1 to develop a service provision that best reflects the needs of the region. Whilst they do not provide direct clinical care, as part of their role FaPMI coordinators offer:
They also support specific peer programs such as:
1 Network partners of specialist mental health services include, for example, local community agencies, maternity services, primary care and community health services, universal and targeted early years services, child and family support services, school nurses and student wellbeing and support staff, youth services, forensic, emergency services, housing and drug and alcohol services.
Western Australia https://www.wanslea.asn.au/children-and-family/mental-health/copmi/
Resources: MJA book
1. Selective interventions for offspring of parents with mental illness need …..
Infants: maternal depression
Children: school based, and specific peer groups.
Young people: specific peer groups
Last updated 24/9/2018
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