PROFILE – Dr Tara Clinton-McHarg is a behavioural scientist located in School of Psychology at the University of Newcastle. Her area of research expertise is in implementation science, and understanding the structures and processes of organisations that provide care to people with a mental health condition. Her research interests include identifying ways that evidence-based models of preventive care designed for clinical settings can be tailored and adapted to make them more suitable for implementation in non-clinical settings. Tara is currently working with community-managed organisations to co-design and trial models of preventive care that are suitable for implementation in this setting.
ABSTRACT – CMO Connect: a role for CMOs in connecting physical and mental health
Tara Clinton McHarg*, John Wiggers, Luke Wolfenden, Kate Bartlem, Andrew Searles, Andrew Wilson, Magdalena Wilczynska, Joanna Latter, Lauren Gibson, Jenny Bowman
The ‘CMO Connect’ project will explore the potential role that mental health community managed organisations (CMOs) might play in providing chronic disease preventive care to people with a mental health issue. The project aims to identify: 1) current CMO preventive care practices; 2) barriers and facilitators to CMO staff providing preventive care; 3) consumer preferences for receiving preventive care; and 4) the organisational mechanisms that may support CMOs to provide preventive care systematically.
This collaborative project (utilising quantitative and qualitative methods) will be undertaken over 2.5 years with mental health CMOs in NSW. The methods of each of the project’s sub-studies will be described including: an online survey of CMO leaders to identify the chronic disease-focused programs and support they offer consumers; an online survey to explore CMO staff member roles in the provision of preventive care; telephone interviews with consumers to learn about their preferences for support; and in-depth focus groups with consumers, staff and managers to gain insight into what models of preventive care might work in the CMO setting.
The study will provide a comprehensive picture of the preventive care that is currently being provided by CMOs, the potential barriers and facilitators to its provision, and mechanisms that could enhance the systematic provision of such care. Based on the findings from the four sub-studies, one or more models of preventive care provision in CMOs will be developed and pilot tested in one CMO.
Learnings from this study will assist other CMOs, and those who work with them, to understand how preventive care might be able to be integrated into practice in their organisation. The project also hopes to deliver one or more feasible, cost-effective models for the provision of preventive care that could be adopted and implemented by CMOs across Australia.