Disabil Rehabil 2017 01 12;39(1):98-103. Epub 2016 Mar 12.
a School of Nursing , University of Wollongong , Wollongong , NSW , Australia.
Purpose People who access health services often have a range of needs that require the involvement of members from a multidisciplinary team. Teaching future health professionals about the importance of a multidisciplinary approach can be challenging. The aim of this paper is to describe a project called Recovery Camp that enhanced multidisciplinary health education through experiential and immersive engagement with people experiencing mental illness. Method Future health professionals and people with a lived experience of mental illness took part in Recovery Camp - an innovative five-day therapeutic recreation initiative in the Australian bush. Results are presented in a case study format and provide the reflective quotes of participants. The quotes were analyzed using a content analysis to identify core concepts. Results Analyses identified a common appreciation of multidisciplinary learning. The interactions among students and between students and consumers, promoted inter-professional practice and a holistic understanding of mental health care. Conclusions An immersive multidisciplinary approach, embedded within a recovery-based programme, enhances students' understanding of the significance of multidisciplinary mental health care and treatment. Implications for Rehabilitation People with a lived experience of mental illness have a range of complex needs that require involvement of members from a multidisciplinary rehabilitation team. This study suggested a multidisciplinary, experiential, immersive health education experience - drawing on the principles of therapeutic recreation - can promote inter-professional rehabilitative practice and an appreciation for holistic mental health care.
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