Australian Mental Health Outcomes and Classification Network
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Development of a new nationally consistent consumer rated measure

Currently three consumer-rated measures are used in adult, older persons and forensic services in Australia. These are: the Kessler 10 Plus (K10+), which is used in New South Wales, Western Australia, South Australia and the Northern Territory; the Behaviour and Symptom Identification Scale (BASIS-32), used in Victoria, Tasmania and the Australian Capital Territory; and the Mental Health Inventory 38 item version (MHI-38), used in Queensland. 

Recommendation 6 of the NOCC Strategic Directions 2014-2024 Final Report recommended that work should be commissioned to develop one consistent national consumer-rated measure for adults and older persons. It was noted that one nationally consistent measure will enable comparability across jurisdictions, together with more focused and developed reporting and training materials to support its use. It would also promote consistency in the approach to consumers who receive services in more than one jurisdiction.

AMHOCN has been tasked with supporting the National Mental Health Information Development Expert Advisory Panel (NMHIDEAP) with the development of this new consumer rated measure, guided by the Mental Health Information Strategy Standing Committee (MHISSC). The aim is for a measure to be developed suitable for national implementation, with the potential for inclusion in the National Outcomes and Casemix Collection (NOCC) as a possible replacement for the K10+, BASIS-32 and MHI-38 in public sector mental health services. This new measure will aim to provide a more comprehensive view of the consumer’s (adults and older persons -16 years+) perspective; have utility and acceptability for both consumers and clinicians, with the potential to be used in routine practice to support communication between consumers and clinicians; and provide information to facilitate reporting on the progress of national mental health reform.

A project working group has been convened, with participation from consumers, carers and NMHIDEAP members. Initial work has been undertaken to develop a first draft of the new measure and AMHOCN will shortly be undertaking consultations with the sector. For information about this project, please email: Rosemary Dickson, AMHOCN Network Coordinator.