ABSTRACT & PAPER GUIDELINES

Do you have a Lived Experience to share with our Equally Well network?

We are calling for participants to submit abstracts for video and poster presentations for the 2024 Equally Well Forum – Embedding Lived Experience, 27-28 May at the Storey Hall, RMIT, Melbourne. 

Elevate Your Voice, Drive Change

Step into a transformative dialogue led by Lived Experience experts, where voices from all members of the Equally Well movement – clinicians, researchers, advocates, educators, service providers, policymakers, and passionate individuals – converge to shape the future of mental health and physical wellbeing. 

It’s more than just a forum; it’s a platform to exchange strategies, present case studies, and ignite change on three crucial themes:

1. Positive Actions for Better Physical Health Outcomes: Share your innovative approaches and success stories in enhancing physical health outcomes for individuals within the mental health system. Whether it’s pioneering interventions, community initiatives, or collaborative efforts, showcase actions that are making a tangible difference in people’s lives.

2. Overcoming Barriers to Advance Physical Health Needs: Dive deep into the barriers and challenges obstructing the progress of physical health needs for individuals with mental health challenges. Engage in candid discussions and insightful analyses to unravel the systemic, societal, and individual obstacles impeding progress. Let’s brainstorm effective strategies for overcoming them together.

3. Insights and Strategies to Drive the Equally Well Movement: Be a driving force behind raising the voices of lived experience in the Equally Well movement. Share your invaluable insights and devise actionable strategies to bridge the life expectancy gap for individuals living with mental illness and ensuring all lived experience voices are heard. Your experiences, perspectives, and aspirations will shape the trajectory of this vital mission.

Submission Guidelines

Abstract submissions in the form of 

  • 2 minute video to be presented in the auditorium or foyer
  • Printed poster to be displayed at the event

Please note: If your abstract and poster are selected for presentation at the 2024 Equally Well Forum you agree to submitting a written paper in one of the following formats for publication in the Forum Book of Proceedings:
• dot point summary, or
• short paper, 500-1,000 words, or
• Full paper, 3,000 words (not peer reviewed)
• Full paper, 3,000 words (peer reviewed).

POTENTIAL TOPICS / CATEGORIES

All abstracts must focus on the physical health of people living with mental illness.  

The suggested below are to illustrate the breadth of possible relevant content. It is not a comprehensive list and is provided only as a guide to the current priority areas that an abstract and poster may cover. 

  • Social and clinical prevention 
  • Working in partnerships 
  • Converting policy into practice 
  • Consumer and carer partnerships 
  • Practical project reports 
  • Integrated care 
  • First Nations social and emotional wellbeing
 

GUIDELINES & CONDITIONS

Digital (print ready) Poster 

  • An A3 (portrait) poster to be displayed (either in a printed or digital format) during the event. 
  • Posters must be provided in pdf format via the Equally Well website.
  • Should have a professional appearance and be well designed (see hints and tips at bottom of this page). 
  • The poster should contain:

         o the title

         o names of all authors and affiliations

         o sponsor of your research

         o e-mail and a web address (if applicable)

         o the content should follow an abstract outline, describing the: 

               – reason for your research/project

               – research question 

               – research method 

              – (preliminary) results 

               – conclusion(s) 

               – discussion 

  • You may also reproduce your poster in A4 format to distribute to the conference participants.
  • Posters must be presented and displayed in English.

Video Recorded Poster

  • 2-minute video recording to be submitted via the Equally Well website 
  • The recording should contain:

         o the title

         o names of all authors and affiliations

         o sponsor of your research

         o e-mail and a web address (if applicable)

         o the content should follow an abstract outline, describing the: 

               – reason for your research/project

               – research question 

               – research method 

              – (preliminary) results 

               – conclusion(s) 

               – discussion

*Note: All abstracts that demonstrate a partnership or co-design approach will be considered favourably.

An abstract should summarise the important points of the proposed presentation to the symposium and highlight the relevant content to be communicated.  They need to be concise yet informative, and contain an outline of the aims, process, relevance, results and conclusions of the work undertaken.

Authors may submit more than one abstract however, submitting an abstract is no guarantee of a place on the symposium program.  Where appropriate, assistance can also be offered for the preparation of written papers.

 

ASSESSMENT CRITERIA

The assessment criteria used by the Symposium Scientific Committee will be: 

Forum theme and topics: showing a significant or relevant relationship to the symposium theme. 

Current and implementation focus: evidence that the project implementation and outcomes have relevance to improving the physical health of people living with mental illness. 

Analytical: the abstract draws out insights, what was learnt, recommends new policies and/or actions and provide a clear understanding of the outcomes. 

Collaborative approach: demonstrates effective partnerships with consumers, carers and other partners in design and implementation. 

Broadening health: promotes understanding of the range of factors and disciplines that impact on the physical health of people living with mental illness. 

Quality: high quality scientifically and/or in other ways.

Note: Abstracts written from a health consumer standpoint, demonstrate a partnership or co-design approach, or with a multi-disciplinary focus about service challenges being overcome, are particularly welcome and will be prioritised where possible.

SUBMITTING YOUR ABSTRACT

Abstracts should be submitted via the online portal on the Equally Well website.  Authors who are not able to submit their abstract online are asked to contact Lee Cobb on 02 6365 7630 or via email to make alternative arrangements.

 

REVIEW PROCESS

Submissions will be assessed by the Symposium Scientific Committee according to the assessment criteria.  The committee will contact authors about the status of their abstract, refer to Important Dates below.  

IMPORTANT DATES

29 February 2024

30 March 2024

12 April 2024

01 July 2024

05 August 2024

12 August 2024

Call for Abstracts

Abstract submissions close

Notification of abstract status

Submit 1st draft written paper for forum proceedings

Submit final written paper for forum proceedings

Submit revised abstract

QUESTIONS & ASSISTANCE

The Equally Well Forum website has everything else you need to know about the symposium. However, should you have any questions about the abstract process, or require assistance, please reach out to Lee Cobb via email or by phoning 0491 638 537.

 

POSTER DESIGN AND LAYOUT TIPS

Attention to detail makes poster presentations a success.  A general concept is that posters should stimulate discussion, not give a long presentation.  Because space is limited, keep your text to a minimum, emphasize graphics, and make sure every item in your poster is necessary.  You can always bring handouts that provide more details than your poster. Also, have business cards available so interested people can contact you later. 

A poster is essentially a visual presentation, so try to find ways to show what you did.  Here are some tips: 

  • Draw a rough sketch of your poster on graph paper to develop a clear idea of which components will go where. 
  • Information on your poster should read like a book – flowing from left to right and from top to bottom. It may be helpful to use arrows or identifiers (sequential letters or numbers) to guide your reader through the poster. You can also arrange it in two or three vertical columns, but not horizontal strips. 
  • The introduction or rationale should be placed at the upper left and the outcome/impact or concluding comments should appear at the lower right. 
  • Objectives, educational activities, and other information will fill the remaining space. 
  • Keep it simple – too much information leads to messy or busy posters. 
  • Avoid overwhelming your audience with too many numbers, words and/or complicated graphs. 
  • Stick to two or three main points. Too many can confuse the viewer. 
  • Get feedback from others before you finalise it. 
  • Use short sentences, simple words, and bullets to illustrate discrete points. 
  • Written material should be concise. 
  • Avoid using jargon, acronyms, or unusual abbreviations. 
  • Your printed outcomes/impacts should permit observers to focus on a concise statement of your central findings that lends itself to informal discussion. 
  • All information should be large enough to read easily from at least 4 feet away. 
  • The text should be no smaller than 24 points. 
  • Subheadings should be at least 60 points.
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