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Mental health first aid

Duration

Minimum 2 days of 6 learning hours per day

Purpose/scope

The purpose of this standard is to provide candidates with the knowledge and skills to: recognise mental health issues, provide first aid response, support the person’s recovery, and signpost other services.

The scope of this standard covers:

  • mental health and the factors that can affect wellbeing, including stress
  • mental health issues including: anxiety disorders, suicide, depression, eating disorders, self-harm, substance misuse and psychosis
  • how to recognise early warning signs of mental health issues
  • how to follow the mental health first aid action plan to promote the recovery of good mental health
  • how to use enhanced interpersonal skills such as active listening
  • how to provide mental health first aid in crisis situations to preserve life where the person may be at risk to themselves or others
  • how to guide someone to further support such as: self-help, employer, NHS, or a combination
  • how to help a person recover from a mental health issue
  • how to reduce the stigma and discrimination around mental health issues

Occupational relevance

Training delivered against this standard would be relevant to the following occupational group(s):

  • operative and craft
  • supervision.

Candidate pre-requisites

There are no candidate pre-requisites as part of this standard.

Instruction/supervision

Qualified mental health first aid (MHFA) instructors can deliver this course. Instructors must have completed the seven-day adult MHFA instructor training course.

Delivery

All materials and equipment must be of a suitable quality and quantity for candidates to achieve learning outcomes and must comply with relevant legislation.

Learning should include at least 25% of learning activities to suit scenario examples, simulated practical examples, group activities, and discussions.

Examples and scenarios relevant to the construction sector should be used.

The class size and candidate/instructor ratio is maximum 16:1 to allow training to be delivered in a safe manner and enable candidates to achieve the learning outcomes.

The following method may be used in the delivery of this standard:

  • classroom

This standard is considered to contain 51 per cent or more theoretical learning.

This standard is considered to be set at an advanced level.

Assessment

For the successful completion of training, the trainer must be satisfied that the candidate has achieved all of the learning outcomes.

Quality assurance

Quality assurance against this standard will require initial approval of the training organisation and their content mapped to the standard. 

CITB will also conduct an approval intervention, either desk-based or centre visit, to ensure the training organisation can meet the requirements of the training standard. 

Approved training organisations (ATOs) will be required to present information on records of training and assessment upon request to CITB for desk based analysis. They will also be visited annually by the CITB quality assurance team.

Renewal/refresher

There are no mandatory renewal or recommended refreshment requirements for this standard. The recommended refreshment requirement is every three years (as per other Health & Safety Executive (HSE) first aid courses)

Approval date

July 2019

Review cycle

Either on request or in 3 years from approval date.

Learning outcomes

The candidate will be able to:

  • Describe mental health and the factors that can affect wellbeing, including stress
  • Describe mental health issues including: anxiety, suicide, depression, eating disorders, self-harm, substance misuse and psychosis
  • Recognise early warning signs of mental health issues
  • Follow the mental health first aid action plan 
  • Use enhanced interpersonal skills such as active listening 
  • Provide mental health first aid in crisis situations to preserve life where the person may be at risk to themselves or others
  • Guide someone to further support such as: self-help, employer, NHS, or a combination
  • Help a person recover from a mental health issue
  • Describe how to reduce the stigma and discrimination around mental health issues

Additional information about this standard

Research and policy

Legislation

Health & Safety Executive (HSE)

Advice and support (not an exhaustive list)

Your own organisation might give free/subsidised access to confidential counselling and advice services.