Is the role of support facilitator in the PIR initiative an unmet need for chronically ill clients with complex needs?

Anton Neville Isaacs, Keith Sutton

    Research output: Contribution to conferenceOtherpeer-review


    Aim: The aim of the Partners in Recovery Program is to enable service integration. This study sought to explore the competencies of and role played by the PIR Support Facilitators in enabling service integration.

    Methods: In-depth interviews were conducted with 14 Support Facilitators and 11 staff from referring service providers in Gippsland. Data were thematically analysed.

    Results: The competencies of the Support Facilitator were identified as: having an approachable personality, good communication skills, emotional intelligence empathy, good knowledge of mental health and a good understanding of services and available resources, being able to listen, having strong professional connections and networks, needing to be organised but flexible, creative in approaching difficulties, and having counselling skills.

    The Support Facilitator’s role focuses on helping clients with severe and persistent mental illness to identify their needs and assist them to receive services to address those needs in a timely and organised fashion. The inability to navigate the various services and resources to address their needs is a major reason why chronically ill individuals with complex needs frequently fall through the system cracks. The role of the Support Facilitator is different from that of the traditional role of the Mental Health Case Manager. It appears that heavy workloads prevent case managers from carrying out their traditionally prescribed role in a meaningful way.

    Conclusions: This study identified some of the core competencies Support Facilitators require. The study also suggests that the role of the Support facilitator is vital in ensuring that clients with chronic mental illness receive the services they need.
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication statusPublished - 2015
    Event3rd Sustainable Mental Health – Sustainable Communities Conference - Adelaide, Australia
    Duration: 25 Jun 201526 Jun 2015


    Conference3rd Sustainable Mental Health – Sustainable Communities Conference


    • Recovery services
    • Care coordination

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