Evidence shows that persons admitted for medical surgical or obstetric hospitalizations with cooccurring mental health needs have more complications, longer length of stays, more readmissions, and higher morbidity and mortality than those without cooccurring mental health needs. This grant funds the offering of MHFA training to doctors, nurses, and all auxiliary workers in two large community hospitals in Solano County, California, the most impoverished and highest mental health need county in Northern California. Aim 1 provides mental health training to non-behavioral health care workers, to teach them to recognize, assess, provide resources for, refer, and take action to reduce stigma for patients with mental health needs.
Virtual training with MHFA will be offered once a month in two community hospitals, to train 200 health care providers annually with a total of 1000 trained over the 5-year period. We plan to include a third hospital staff, on a United States Air Force base in our county, in years 2-3 of the grant. By training hundreds of health care workers who are presently not knowledgeable in mental health resources, improvements in care will be delivered to patients and families. Aim 2 allows health care workers themselves to benefit by taking the training, as they learn resources for self-care and care of colleagues during this stressful period of COVID caregiving. The goal of offering mental health skills to 3 entire hospital systems will no doubt meet the goals of this grant announcement and benefit large numbers of diverse patients, families, and healthcare workers.