Mental illnesses are among the fastest growing health problems nationwide and Indigenous Australians are at high risk.
Menzies researchers are seeking to prevent mental illness by identifying the tools and methods people and communities need to stay socially, spiritually, emotionally and mentally strong.
Our research focus:
- To communicate 'two-way' mental health messages and to discover ways to overcome language and literacy barriers.
- To address mental health literacy needs in remote and urban settings for primary care and specialist services.
- To develop the skills of Indigenous researchers and to conduct research that provides practical and culturally appropriate early intervention and treatment.
Our research impact:
- Our program of research – the Aboriginal and Islander Mental health initiative (AIMhi) – has given Indigenous service providers and communities a range of tools to better recognise and manage the problems causing mental illness, such as social issues, work worries and family stress.
- The AIMhi Stay Strong Plan and other AIMhi resources have been developed and continue to be used in a diverse range of services across the country. The AIMhi resources promote integrated care and are used in mental health, substance use, youth, primary care, perinatal and chronic disease services.
- Our AIMhi Stay Strong App is one of very few e-mental health resources designed to meet the needs of Indigenous Australians and is supported by the Australian Government’s e-Mental Health Strategy.
- Many health professionals, community workers and service providers have been trained in different settings to use the AIMhi approach through the training programs and materials that we have developed.
- AIMhi has explored and supported new approaches to care for people with alcohol related injuries in hospital.
- AIMhi has collaborated with the ABCD partnership and One21seventy to develop primary care tools and training that support best practice in early intervention in mental health and youth health.