Mental Health Outreach Fellowship

View the list of 2018 Mental Health Outreach Fellows

The PA Foundation Mental Health Outreach Fellowship is designed to connect PAs’ clinical expertise and compassion to community need with a specific emphasis on mental health. Tapping into the established and growing community outreach program developed by the National Council for Behavioral Health, the fellowship equips a pilot cohort of 16 PAs to conduct outreach in their communities as trainers using the validated Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) curriculum.

The goal of the MHFA program is to improve the mental health knowledge and skills of the U.S. public in an effort to prepare individuals to recognize and respond to signs of early-stage mental illness and mental health crisis, offer and provide initial help, and guide a person toward appropriate professional support. This program may be likened to CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation), a familiar community health education training which has prepared laypeople to respond to cardiac emergencies for several generations.

The first cohort of PA Foundation Mental Health Outreach Fellows participated in the following:

  • Three-day Mental Health First Aid instructor training, held March 26-28, 2018, in Alexandria, VA. As a result of the training, the fellows are now certified as MHFA instructors and can teach the 8-hour course in their communities. The training served to enhance the skill set of the PAs who are clinically trained to diagnose mental illness but not necessarily trained to educate adult learners.
  • Training included instruction on creating business plans, forming community partnerships, and outreach.

Throughout the course of the next year, fellows will:

  • Conduct community outreach and training to a minimum of 100 people.
  • Upon completion of the required local training, the PA Foundation Mental Health Outreach Fellows will be required to submit de-identified outcomes of the pre-/post-training test to assess participants’ change in knowledge, attitudes and behavior before and after training.
  • Fellows will be required to submit a report and provide insights on healthcare providers as MHFA trainers and their recommendations for refining and expanding the program to build out a strong PA network of MHFA trainers, as well as their plan to continue the program locally.
  • Fellows will be invited to submit MHFA poster presentations for the 2019 AAPA conference.

Fellows will receive a $1,250 honorarium/stipend for their participation in the program. The PA Foundation will cover and/or reimburse the cost of the following:

  • Training costs (valued at $2,000)
  • Airfare/transportation
  • Lodging
  • Meals

The total value of the training and associated expenses plus stipend is estimated to be around $5,000.

View the program overview and requirements document.

Fellowship Requirements

The Mental Health First Aid instructor training was held on March 26-28, 2018, in Alexandria, VA.

Upon completion of the required local training, the PA Foundation Mental Health Outreach Fellows will be required to submit de-identified outcomes of the pre-/post-training test to assess participants’ change in knowledge, attitudes and behavior before and after training.

Fellows will be required to submit a report and provide insights on healthcare providers as MHFA trainers and their recommendations for refining and expanding the program to build out a strong PA network of MHFA trainers, as well as their plan to continue the program locally.

Fellows will be invited to submit MHFA poster presentations for the 2019 AAPA conference.

2018 Mental Health Outreach Fellows

View the list of 2018 Fellows here.

View the press release here.

 

Questions? Contact Caroline Pierce at cpierce@aapa.org or 571.319.4510.