FAQs

For your convenience, listed below are a few of the frequently asked questions we receive.

If you have any questions which are not answered here, please do reach out, we’d be happy to answer them.

What is Mental Health First Aid?

Mental Health First Aid (MHFA™) courses are evidence-informed courses developed for members of the public to learn to support someone developing a mental health problem, the worsening of an existing mental health problem or a mental health related crisis. The level of evidence meets the top National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) criteria (i.e. level 1 evidence for an intervention).

Why, when and where did MHFA start?

MHFA originated in Australia.

Betty Kitchener who has been a counsellor, registered nurse and an Adjunct Professor co-developed the Mental Health First Aid Program with her husband Professor Tony Jorm, a mental health researcher in 2000.

They recognised that while first aid for physical injuries and illnesses had existed for some time in many countries around the world, there was a need for increased mental health literacy and first aid skills for mental health problems and crises.

What is the difference between the standard Mental Health First Aid course, blended workplace courses and the online versions you are now offering?

Some courses are only available as face-to-face courses, like the 12-hour MHFA for Older Persons course and the specialised 4-hour Conversations about Suicide course.

Some MHFA courses can be delivered fully face-to-face or as a Blended Online course. The 12-hour Standard MHFA course is traditionally delivered face-to-face (usually over 2 consecutive or non-consecutive days). Now it can also be delivered as a Blended Online MHFA Community (Standard) course, which is made up of Component 1 (eLearning of approximately 6 to 7 hours) and Component 2 (2 x Instructor-led sessions that can be delivered online or in-person - approximately 5 hours).

Some specialised MHFA workshops are only available in a Blended Online format. These include:

  •  Blended Online Workplace MHFA
  •  Blended Online Tertiary MHFA
  •  Blended Online MHFA for Financial Service Professionals.

For further details about how each course can be delivered, refer to our MHFA Training page or complete a contact form.

Are MHFA courses nationally accredited VET courses?

Mental Health First Aid Australia has chosen not to be part of the Vocational Education and Training (VET) scheme to date. The setting up of VET was to ensure that training programs reach an acceptable level of rigour.

 

Be assured that MHFA Australia has a level of academic research and rigour that reaches and surpasses VET requirements. MHFA Australia has a thorough application process for new instructors and a continuous quality improvement program.

 

Some TAFE institutions in NSW and the ACT have made the 12-hour Standard MHFA course eligible as recognised prior learning for the Cert IV in Mental Health (non-clinical).

How is the MHFA Program evaluated?

Since it began in 2000, Mental Health First Aid Australia has been committed to evaluating its training programs.

The MHFA Program has spread globally, with numerous evaluations conducted by many different organisations. Information about all the evaluations published in academic journals can be read here.

 

What does it mean to be 'Accredited' Mental Health First Aider?

Since 1st July 2015, MHFA Australia has developed a 3 year accreditation program for MHFA participants to accredit them against these guidelines.

It is similar to the way National First Aid Standards (which are used to develop and update Red Cross, St Johns Ambulance, etc. First Aid Courses) are held by the Australian Resuscitation Council. Read more about the MHFAider Accreditation Program.

 

Do you offer other services other than MHFA?

Yes we do! Check out our Interactive Wellness Workshops and Skills Development Package.

Complete the contact form to find out more.

Can you provide 1:1 training or only group work?

From time to time MHFA'ders may want to practice their MHFA skills in a safe space, with an accredited MHFA Instructor.

One to one or small group sessions can be provided upon request and subject to availability. Enquire today.

Where do you provide training?

Courses can be delivered at your place of business or an alternative venue, in person within New South Wales.

Online workshops cater to people Australia-wide. This can be a cost effective option for organisations with a remote or dispersed workforce.