Now more than ever before, mental health is in sharp focus in the workplace. Never has there been a greater global jolt to workplace psyche than the upheaval caused by social distancing, mandated working from home, fears of infection, and concerns about whether the employee will still have a job.
The silver lining is that workplace mental health is now talked about much more openly and employer organisations like yours are more receptive to tools that can genuinely help. Just as, decades ago, it became no longer acceptable to allow smoking in the workplace, it’s become no longer acceptable to be ill-equipped to tackle mental health impacts in the workplace.
Fortunately, the term ‘mental health first aid’ has entered the vernacular.
What is the meaning of mental health first aid?
First aid is the assistance given to a person as soon as their injury becomes known. It’s the same with mental health first aid. When a person experiences a mental health crisis, whether its onset was spontaneous or it had been ‘brewing’ for some time, mental health first aid is vital.
Knowing what kind of assistance to administer and how to administer it can be tricky. What would you do if an employee experienced a psychotic episode at work? This might look like uncharacteristic disruptive behaviour that came out of nowhere, including shouting, arguing, paranoid delusions, hallucinations, making threats and using disorganised speech. How do you diffuse the situation and help to calm or restrain the employee for their safety and that of others until medical help arrives? That’s mental health first aid.
How a Mental Health First Aid® certificate can help your business
Mental health comes in all shapes and sizes. Whereas a psychotic episode may be frightening for others and instantly disruptive for business, depression and anxiety can be a ‘slow burn’ disruption. Substance abuse, panic attacks, suicidal and self-harm tendencies, burnout, role overload and reactions to traumatic events can all play out at work, causing very real workplace hazards.
Queensland work-related mental disorder statistics*
Of all accepted, serious workers’ compensation claims in Queensland, 3.4% are for mental disorders. A typical compensation payment for this type of claim is $24,800, with $43 million paid out in claims annually. The typical length of time off work is 85 workdays. Approximately one third of accepted mental disorder claims were associated with work pressure, with 45% caused by workplace bullying and exposure to violence. Mental stress is the cause of 95% of mental disorder claims.
Can your organisation afford not to be equipped to administer mental health first aid? Psychological health and safety is every bit as important as protecting the physical safety and wellbeing of your employees.
The above statistics illustrate the financial impacts of workplace mental health issues. It’s also important to consider the enormous value in developing a mentally healthy, psychologically safe and high-performing workplace through building capacity in yourself and your team.
Mental health first aid courses Brisbane
MiTraining are leaders in Workplace Wellness and currently offer two mental health first aid courses in Brisbane.
Mental Health First Aid® (Standard) two-day course
An ideal first step to take in developing mental health first aid capabilities in your workplace is MiTraining’s Mental Health First Aid® (Standard) two-day course. Delivered in-person in our facilities in Milton, Brisbane, the course teaches how to offer initial support to other adults with an existing mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis until professional help arrives or the crisis resolves.
Qualification: Upon successful completion of this course, attendees will receive a certificate and may use the title of accredited Mental Health First Aid™ Officer.
Supporting Employee Mental Health During Organisational Disruption
Delivered online, the Supporting Employee Mental Health During Organisational Disruption course will give you the practical tools and knowledge to support employee mental health in the face of organisational disruption. When employees feel safe, supported and valued – particularly during times of turmoil – they are happier, more resilient and more productive.
Qualification: Statement of Attainment upon completion of optional formal assessment.
Live corporate training workshops
MiTraining also offers live half-day and full-day training workshops in our facilities in Milton, Brisbane.
Mental health first aid preparedness benefits everyone
If you think of a mental health first aid kit like a traditional first aid kit, you’ll recognise how vital each is. When an employee cuts themselves, they know where to go for a band-aid and if the cut is serious, they know that an ambulance will be called.
When your organisation is equipped with a mental health first aid kit, your people will know they are cared for, the potential for disruption will be minimised and your workplace will maintain a comfortable equilibrium.
Reach out today to book a discovery call with our Client Development & Admissions Manager or call us on 1300 549 180.
*Source: Office of Industrial Relations document, Profile: Work-related mental disorders – Queensland.