Mental health promotion and prevention training programmes

Public Health England have published a document which highlights mental health promotion and prevention training programmes.

Improving the population’s mental health and wellbeing and preventing mental illness and suicide is a key priority for public health. Like much public health, this priority requires action across many sectors, including those working across early years, education, health and social care, business, welfare and housing, criminal justice, neighbourhoods and communities. Training staff with the knowledge and skills to improve mental health and wellbeing and prevent mental illness and suicide is a specific recommendation within the NHS Five Year Forward View for Mental Health and Public Health England’s (PHE) public mental health leadership and workforce development framework. PHE’s review of the public health workforce identified resilient communities and better public mental health as key drivers affecting the public health workforce in the future.

This resource is a collation of emerging practice examples of mental health promotion and prevention training programmes available in England for the core and wider public health workforce. Its purpose is to support those who wish to commission or deliver such training as part of building a public health system capable of meeting the growing mental health challenge.

The examples provided in the document have been identified from a literature review and consultation with the field. PHE is not validating the courses included but providing information on recognised and emerging practice, including any written evaluations and also which competencies of the public mental health leadership and workforce development framework it meets. These competencies, together with the core principles can be used to commission public mental health training.

Evidence of the impact of training on population health remains a challenge and PHE encourages robust evaluation to be incorporated into training. The examples of training given are available for commissioning within England or have significant spread and reach within England. Very localised programmes are not included. However, it is recognised that sharing learning on delivering and evaluating high-quality, cost-effective training is needed, based on the competencies required for the workforce to meet new public health challenges.

A copy of the document can be downloaded here.