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Evaluation of a four-week Rehabilitation Assessment program introduced at an Australian Community Care Units setting: mental health consumers and clinicians perspectives

Jodie Nguy, Melissa Petrakis, Michael Wilson



Background: Community Care Units (CCUs) are purpose built residential accommodation for adults with severe and enduring mental illness. The CCUs are staffed by clinical mental health staff 24 hours per day and there are consistent guidelines as to the process these programs utilise to prioritise who would most benefit from them. A CCU based in the Inner East of Melbourne, Australia, has utilised one bed as a ‘review program’ to assess patients’ functional livings skills and potential for engagement with the long-term rehabilitation program as part of a general more person-centered healthcare approach.


Aims: The purpose was to evaluate: (1) patient perception of the program and if this benefits their rehabilitation, (2) the perception of clinicians who refer to the program and (3) the perception of clinicians of the CCU multidisciplinary team (MDT).


Method: A purposive sample of patients and clinicians was employed. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 7 patients who had participated in the review program between January 2010 - April 2012 and an online survey was conducted with responses from 5 case managers who had referred patients and 9 clinicians in the CCU MDT team who had participated in conducting the review.


Results: Our results indicated that patients found the process somewhat overwhelming and an adjustment to their daily routine; they were generally unclear as to the rationale for referral to the program. Clinicians found the program to be a useful process in assisting a more in-depth understanding of their patients’ needs.


Conclusion: Results suggest that review and modification to program delivery could enhance patient benefits and enhance more person-centered approaches to care.



Community-based care, person-centered healthcare, rehabilitation, residential assessment, severe mental illness, Strengths

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