International COPMI conference, California 2014

The 4th International Conference on Families with Parental Mental Health Challenges: ‘Addressing the Needs of the Whole Family’

Held on April 25-27 2014, various video presentations are now accessible below.

Note, sound at the venue was not of a high quality. 

Please click on the below to reveal presentation videos

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What’s Working for Families Where Parents have Mental Illness? A Global Perspective to Start the Conversation

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Kim Foster – RN, PhD, Professor, Faculty of Health, Disciplines of Nursing & Midwifery, University of Canberra, Bruce, Australia.

The opening plenary provides context from the three preceding World Conferences, (Australia 2009, Norway 2010, Vancouver, 2012), a report on global findings from the Children of Parents with a Mental Illness (COPMI) world survey and activity, and a unique example of how one of those findings is changing the conversation about parental mental health.

Learning objectives

  1. Participants will have an understanding of the three prior conferences that are backdrop and context for this gathering

  2. Participants will be familiar with findings from Dr. Foster’s Winston Churchill Grant study of programs and practices serving children and families with parental mental illness across jurisdictions

  3. Participants will appreciate how lived experience has the power to inspire and shape creative treatments for families with parental mental health challenges.

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Video abstracts

Mini Plenary: Using Online Interventions to Address the Needs of Families Impacted by Parental Mental Health Challenges

William R. Beardslee – MD, Director, Baer Prevention Initiatives and Chairman Emeritus, Department of Psychiatry, Boston Children’s Hospital; Gardner/Monks Professor of Child Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.

The Internet has become a mechanism where individuals with health conditions seek out support and services. It allows for anonymity, provides the ability to access services from the comfort of your home, and overcomes barriers to accessing supports such as transportation, meeting times that aren’t convenient and child care. This session will provide overviews of several free online interventions designed to address the needs of families affected by parental mental health challenges. First results from a randomized controlled trial accessing the effectiveness of an Internet based parenting education course and support group for mothers with a psychiatric disability will be discussed. Then experiences with web-based training in combination with live training for the Family Talk intervention developed by Beardslee and colleagues will be presented. Thirdly, an online intervention used to encompass the FOCUS intervention for families facing multiple deployments will be briefly reviewed.

Children of Patients with Severe Illness or Substance Abuse: Prevalence, Identification, Perceived Needs, Services Received and Outcome. Protocol and Progress by April 2014

Kristine Amlund Hagen – Director of Research, Center for Child and Adolescent Mental Health, Eastern and Southern, Norway.

The presentation will describe the aims and design of a large multi-centre study, what type of data we are collecting, what we expect to learn from the results, progress of the project, and challenges and problems we have faced so far.

Learning objectives

  1. Learn about a large ongoing study on children with parental challenges due to substance abuse or mental or somatic illness
  2. Understand some of the practical challenges in implementing the large study
  3. Know what new knowledge to expect from the study when the results are studied  

Improving Outcomes for Families Impacted by Mental Illness

Brahm Goldenberg – BSW, MSW, RSW, Social Worker, CAST, Toronto, ON, Canada
Franz Noritz – BSW, RSW, Social Worker, Children’s Aid Society of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada

The presenters will discuss a partnership venture between a child welfare agency and an adult mental health organization in Toronto. A mental health team will work with child welfare in order to address the psychosocial needs of the parent with a mental health issue as well as their family.

Learning objectives

  1. Gain insight into the challenges for child welfare staff who work with a diverse group of parents who have a mental illness
  2. Learn strategies used for engaging the health care system to recognize the impact of parental mental illness on their system
  3. Learn how to secure a partnership between a child welfare agency and a community mental health organization 

Parenting with Mental Health Challenges: Legal Barriers and Solutions

Katherine S Nemens – JD, Attorney, Mental Health Legal Advisors Committee, Boston, MA, USA

Parents with mental health challenges are at high risk of losing custody of or contact with their children when the court is involved. Stigma and fear are real obstacles in the legal system, which can be overcome with education, upports for families, advocacy and compassion.

Learning objectives

  1. Legal barriers in the courts: The “best interests of the child” standard is often illdefined; courts can make custody and parenting decisions based on a mental health diagnosis, rather than parenting abilities
  2. Strategies to overcome these barriers: Providing parents with services and resources to support their family; educating judges and attorneys on the recovery model, to look beyond diagnosis, and to consider holistic, individualized and creative solutions for parents with mental health challenges; and training advocates to look for real-life solutions, and help clients redefine “success”
  3. Discuss supports and resources for parents with mental health challenges: Include Recovery Learning entres, Clubhouses, and other Peer Supports

The Italian Program “Semola”: Focusing Recruitment Problems

Edoardo Re, MD, Psychiatrist, NGO Contatto Onlus and Niguarda Hospital, Milano, Lombardy, Italy.

Referrals to the new Italian Program “Semola” in Milano, despite a highly defined procedure, don’t exceed one third of recruitable families. Many factors seem to be related with this gap (first of them resistances offered by adult psychiatrist) will be discussed with participants.

Learning objectives

  1. Discuss an in depth analysis of such a recruitment problem and to share experiences with participants

Integrating a Mental Health Promotion Strategy for Families in the Postpartum Period within an Existing Public Health Program: Perspectives from Parents, Home Visitors, and Public Health Nurses

Marion Cooper – BSW, RSW, Manager of Mental Health Promotion Prevention and Early Intervention, Winnipeg Regional Health Authority, Winnipeg, MB, Canada.

This multi-layered mental health promotion innovation strategy aims to improve parents’ mental health, strengthen public health workforce capacity in mental health promotion, support collaboration between mental health and public health systems, and create and sustain mechanisms for effective mental health promotion in community settings across Manitoba.

Learning objectives

  1. To improve the mental health and decrease mental illness/ distress of women and their children in the Families First home visiting program
  2. To strengthen public health workforce capacity to address mental health promotion
  3. To create and sustain mechanisms for effective mental health promotion interventions in community settings across Manitoba