Ms Jo McElhinney1, Ms Stephanie Aalders1, Ms Elizabeth Wallace2
1Plenty Valley Community Health (PVCH), Epping, Australia, 2Community Team North, Northern Area Mental Health Service (NAMHS), Epping, Melbourne, Australia
Aim: To work collaboratively in reducing the impact of risk factors of physical health conditions for clients with serious mental illness via a partnership between Northern Area Mental Health Service(NAMHS) and co-located Plenty Valley Community Health, Dietitian and Exercise Physiologist.
Method: Clients of NAMHS are screened through a continuous cycle of metabolic monitoring by NAMHS Physical Health Nurses and referred to Dietitian and Exercise Physiologist. Before and after receiving services, objective measurements are taken. These include: weight, BMI, waist-circumference, blood-pressure, lipids, fasting glucose, HbA1c, Vitamin D. Dietetic and Exercise Physiology interventions are individualised based on assessments so clients can achieve optimal physical health outcomes. Regular follow-up monitors progress and provides support.
- Total clients: N=24.
- AusDRisk-screen scores– 14 (58%) =high-risk, 4 (17%) =moderate risk, 6 have diagnosed diabetes (25%).
- 17 lost weight (71%), between 1.0-14.8kg. Median number of Dietetics appointments: 5, EP appointments: 4.
- 5 (21%) attended YMCA gym integration program– 3 completed the existing 8 week program (13%), 2 currently completing/attending (10%), 6 will begin the program (25%). 4 are ineligible and referred for further medical investigations (17%).
- Waist circumference change–17 (71%) lost between 1cm-19cm, average loss: 6.6cm.
- Qualitative– 4 referrals to Endocrinology (17%), 5 referred for investigation of cardiovascular issues (21%), 3 referred to DNE (13%), 2 referred to women’s health nurse (10%).
Significance of the findings to allied health:
Clients receiving services from a PVCH Dietitian and Exercise Physiologist through this innovative partnership with the NAMHS Physical Health team have improved health outcomes and reduced risk factors for chronic disease.