The effectiveness of online mental health first aid training in community rugby : A mixed-methods approach

Journal article


Russell, Suzanna, Kelly, Vincent, Polman, Remco and Warren-James, Matthew. (2023). The effectiveness of online mental health first aid training in community rugby : A mixed-methods approach. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 20(7), p. Article 5391. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph20075391
AuthorsRussell, Suzanna, Kelly, Vincent, Polman, Remco and Warren-James, Matthew
Abstract

Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) training exists to improve supportive behaviours towards peers, increase mental health literacy, and reduce stigma. Community sport clubs have potential to successfully deliver mental health programs. This study investigated the effectiveness of online MHFA training undertaken by members of the rugby community and evaluated the feasibility and usefulness of the online delivery mode and users’ engagement with it. A mixed-methods approach was used to provide depth of understanding through qualitative analysis, combined with quantitative outcomes. Online surveys examining participants’ knowledge and perceptions were administered pre- and post-MHFA training. Significant improvements (p < 0.05) across all assessed domains were observed post- compared to pre-MHFA training. A large effect size was identified in relation to advice giving and sign and symptom identification. A moderate effect size pre- to post-improvement was identified for users’ perceptions of therapy’s effectiveness, the ability of people with severe mental health conditions to recover, and benefit of a healthcare professional. Participants endorsed the MHFA program to improve mental health literacy, advance non-technical skills, and improve confidence. MHFA training can increase the awareness and knowledge of mental health issues in key individuals in community sport clubs and enable them to aid people with mental health concerns. Online MHFA training is associated with improved mental health literacy and may be a suitable and economically sustainable model for community sport.

Keywordsmental health literacy; mental health training; mental health awareness; early identification; Mental Health First Aid; sport; rugby; community; stigma; symptoms
Year2023
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Journal citation20 (7), p. Article 5391
PublisherMultidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute (MDPI AG)
ISSN1661-7827
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph20075391
PubMed ID37048006
Scopus EID2-s2.0-85152320285
PubMed Central IDPMC10094660
Open accessPublished as ‘gold’ (paid) open access
Page range1-12
FunderQueensland Mental Health Commission (QMHC)
Queensland Rugby Union (QRU)
Rugby Unite
Publisher's version
License
File Access Level
Open
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online04 Apr 2023
Publication process dates
Accepted29 Mar 2023
Deposited18 Jul 2023
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