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Mental health training: Quantity versus quality



We should not confuse quantity with quality. Whether undertaking four years or four months of study, the question practitioners might usefully ask is ‘how will this training be helpful to my clients.’


Empathic support is of course essential for helping those in need, but so is psycho education. We would all benefit from a better understanding of the astonishing mechanisms of the human brain and how to best manage them.


It also makes sense to get proactive and provide psycho educational skills training before mental health problems occur. Rather than using money and resources constantly fire fighting, we need to learn how to prevent the fires in the first place.


That is why my primary goal for 2016 will be to train trainers. I am working on the best strategy for taking that forward, but Fusion, I believe, does have the potential to change lives, save lives and challenge the current status quo in mental health by provision of an innovative model and system.


Models and systems


A psychological model is defined as ‘a theory to predict outcomes and explain specific psychological processes.’ Models and theories are made up of beliefs and, of course, beliefs change as our knowledge develops.


The current medical model of mental health says that depression and emotional distress can be resolved with medication. It can take up to 10 years to train a GP.


The recovery model tells us that talking therapy is the best way to help. It takes around 4 years to train as a counsellor or psychotherapist.


Fusion proposes a new resilience model for emotional health. It has psycho education at its heart and promotes proactive prevention of mental health problems. By linking the empathic skills of a counsellor with the motivational tools of a coach and with provision of a manualised format for practitioners, training can take months instead of years, at a fraction of the cost.


As Einstein said ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.’



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