Vietnam Veterans Day on 18 August is an opportunity for health practitioners to focus on how they can support the mental health of the 60,000 Australians who were deployed to Vietnam.
Employees and volunteers in the emergency services unfortunately experience higher rates of psychological distress and mental health conditions than the general community. If they can receive appropriate support when they first begin to experience difficulties, then the risk of them developing a mental disorder is reduced.
Despite the clear need within the emergency services community for timely access to mental health services, and considerable investment to date in mental health programs and services, there is still unmet need and under-utilisation of the available services.
Phoenix Australia is collaborating with the Emergency Services Foundation on a study that aims to help personnel recognise when they are having problems with sleep, anger or relationships, and find suitable and easy-to-access support, whether that might be apps, online programs, or face-to-face.
We are looking for participants who are current employees or volunteers of any Victorian emergency services organisation, including those who are:
- in transition to retirement
- operational workers with 6-10 years of service
- corporate staff
Participation is anonymous. Participants will take part in a one-on-one interview of between 30 and 45 minutes. Interviews will be conducted by videoconference or phone.
If you know of someone who would be interested in helping to improve mental health support available to emergency services workers, they can register their interest with Sarah Hewat at [email protected] or by calling 0437 850 360.
Find out more about the study here.