Mental Health Research Programme
Amongst the founding priorities of FiMT are ‘to promote better mental health and well-being’ and ‘to build organizations’ capacity to deliver evidence-based prevention and rehabilitation’. Since then, the Trust has worked hard to develop an understanding of the mental health environment, and to identify where it can best deploy its finite resources to maximum effect. As a result, FiMT established a Mental Health Research Programme (MHRP) in partnership with Centre for Mental Health and King’s Centre for Military Health Research. Read the launch announcement here.
MHRP Steering Group
As part of the Programme, a Steering Group (comprised of experts within the field) makes recommendations on the overall strategic direction of the MHRP, the Research Priorities and the Commissioning process. The Group also provides expert assessment to FiMT of relevant project proposals. All Steering Group recommendations are subject to final approval by the Trust.
The Group is co-Chaired by Chief Executive, Centre for Mental Health, and co-director of King’s Centre for Military Health Research, King’s College London, and incorporates strict protocols on handling the almost inevitable conflicts of interest work in the field of veterans’ mental health throws up. Other member organisations include Combat Stress, Mental Health Foundation, Veterans First Point, Anglia Ruskin University’s Veterans and Families Institute, University College London and Solent University.
Meetings take place quarterly.
A key output from the Steering Group is the MHRP’s 6 research priorities which, in no particular order, are as follows:
- Alcohol and substance misuse, including effective and appropriate interventions.
- The usefulness of services aimed specifically at veterans (including peer support workers).
- Methods to improve help-seeking rates, and barriers to help-seeking.
- The efficacy of military and veteran charities to provide effective mental health support.
- The effectiveness of a ‘Recovery’ based model for the veteran population, including a wider focus on employment and debt management.
- Impact on families, including aggressive behaviour, violence and domestic abuse.