Improving collaborative practice to address offender mental health: criminal justice and mental health service professionals’ attitudes towards interagency training, current training needs and constraints,
Journal: Journal of Research in Interprofessional Practice and Education
Background Professionals from the mental health and criminal justice system must collaborative effectively to address offender mental health but interprofessional training is lacking. Pedagogical frameworks are required to support the development of training in this new area. Aim To inform this framework this paper explores the readiness of professionals towards interprofessional training and demographic differences in these. It explores expectations of interprofessional training, perceived obstacles to collaborative working, interprofessional training needs and challenges facing delivery. Method A concurrent mixed methods approach collected data from professionals attending a crossing boundaries interprofessional workshop. Data was collected through a combination of the RIPLS questionnaire (n=52), free text questions (n=52) and focus groups (n=6).
Findings and Conclusions Mental health and criminal justice professionals’ attitudes towards interprofessional learning were positive (x=17.81; n=43). They did not see their own service as insular (x =4.02; n=44) and reported strong person centredness (x= 6.07; n=43). This suggests professionals are open to the introduction and implementation of future interprofessional training. There were no significant demographic differences in these attitudes.
Professionals raised a range of generic curriculum and educator mechanisms in the development of future interprofessional training suggesting the transfer of pedagogical frameworks from established interprofessional programmes into this new arena is feasible. Context specific factors such offender national policy agendas and the challenges of user involvement using mentally ill offenders must be taken into account. Greater clarity on multi versus interprofessional training is still required with this group of professionals.
Key words: mental health, offenders, criminal justice, interprofessional training,