Australian Mental Health Outcomes and Classification Network
Sharing Information to Improve Outcomes

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Creating Positive Experiences Using NOCC Outcome Measures

It has been identified that, within public sector mental health services, the collection and use of the consumer self-assessment measures (e.g., K-10+, BASIS-32, MHI-38) has lagged behind the routine collection and use of the clinician-rated measures, such as the HoNOS suite. The cultural and structural barriers to why this is the case are largely known. They include clinician inertia around offering the consumer measures, concerns about consumers’ capacity to complete the measures, uncertainty about their value to clinical care,  and organisational cultural issues. Less is known about the range of factors that contribute to consumers feeling encouraged to complete the consumer self-assessment measures and what constitutes a positive experience for them.

To that end, AMHOCN collaborated with Lived Experience Australia (LEA) on a project focused on the offering and use of the consumer self assessment measures used in Australia's public sector mental health services (e.g. K-10+, BASIS-32, MHI-38). Using a semi-structured interview process, the aim was to identify the main themes and key elements that contributed to consumers having a positive experience when being offered and discussing the consumer self-assessment measure with their clinician.

Key themes that were identified by consumers were:

  • Theme 1: Help me complete the measures;
  • Theme 2: Explain what is going on;
  • Theme 3: Being honest with yourself and others; and
  • Theme 4: Talk about things that are important to me

These themes resulted in a set of 6 recommendations for clinicians that would support improvements in the collection and use of the consumer self-assessment measures.

  1. Actively engage in a conversation with consumers around the consumer-rated measure and its implications;
  2. Explain the purpose of the measures and identify the consumer's preferred method for completing;
  3. Offer the measures in a a way that engenders hope and the opportunity for recovery;
  4. Discuss the ratings of the measures with the consumer each time they are completed;
  5. Adopt an approach that encourages the consumer to reflect on their current situation and how it has changed over time; and
  6. Encourage consumers to explore the use of the measure for their own self-management and empowerment

The information gathered in this project will support the development of AMHOCN training resources. Read  the full project report: Creating Positive Experiences Using NOCC Outcome Measures.