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Evaluation of a Rural-Based Community Aged Intensive Recovery Program for Older Adults With Severe Mental Illness

, Andrea McIlvena

Abstract: Aging Matters Paul Sadler, MAPS, CCLP; Andrea McIlvena, RN, CMHN Community Aged Intensive Recovery (CAIR) programs are an integral part of Aged Persons Mental Health Services (APMHS); however, no study has investigated whether a rural-based intensive program benefits older clients with severe mental illness. The current sample comprised 119 older adults who were being managed by a CAIR program from July 2011 to June 2013. Three key results were found: (a) approximately three quarters of clients admitted to the CAIR program remained treated in the community; (b) the program assisted in significantly reducing the level of psychiatric symptom severity from CAIR entry to CAIR exit; and (c) the APMHS team with the CAIR program had a lower psychiatric inpatient rate compared to the APMHS team without the program. The current study highlights the importance of delivering effective rural-based CAIR programs to older adults experiencing severe mental illness. [Journal of Psychosocial Nursing and Mental Health Services, 53(9), 17–21.] Mr. Sadler is Clinical Psychologist, and Ms. McIlvena is Mental Health Nurse and Team Leader, Latrobe Regional Hospital’s South West Gippsland Aged Persons Mental Health Service, Wonthaggi Hospital, Wonthaggi, Victoria, Australia. Ms. McIlvena is the team leader of the Community Aged Intensive Recovery (CAIR) program, and Paul Sadler consults within Latrobe Regional Hospital’s Aged Persons Mental Health Service. The authors acknowledge the late Associate Professor Bruce Osborne (Psychogeriatrician) who pioneered and introduced the CAIR program to rural Victoria, Australia. The authors thank Latrobe Regional Hospital for supporting the CAIR program as well as the clients and their carers for participating. The authors also acknowledge the skill and dedication of each mental health practitioner who works in community rural aged psychiatry. Address correspondence to Paul Sadler, MAPS, CCLP, Clinical Psychologist, Latrobe Regional Hospital’s South West Aged Persons Mental Health Service, Wonthaggi Hospital, Graham Street, Wonthaggi, Victoria, Australia, 3995; e-mail: [email protected] 10.3928/02793695-20150622-03 Community Aged Intensive Recovery (CAIR) programs are an integral part of Aged Persons Mental Health Services (APMHS); however, no study has investigated whether a rural-based intensive program benefits older clients with severe mental illness. The current sample comprised 119 older adults who were being managed by a CAIR program from July 2011 to June 2013. Three key results were found: (a) approximately three quarters of clients admitted to the CAIR program remained treated in the community; (b) the program assisted in significantly reducing the level of psychiatric symptom severity from CAIR entry to CAIR exit; and (c) the APMHS team with the CAIR program had a lower psychiatric inpatient rate compared to the APMHS team without the program. The current study highlights the importance of delivering effective rural-based CAIR programs to older adults experiencing severe mental illness. [Journal of Psychosocial Nursing and Mental Health Services, 53(9), 17–21.] Mr. Sadler is Clinical Psychologist, and Ms. McIlvena is Mental Health Nurse and Team Leader, Latrobe Regional Hospital’s South West Gippsland Aged Persons Mental Health Service, Wonthaggi Hospital, Wonthaggi, Victoria, Australia. Ms. McIlvena is the team leader of the Community Aged Intensive Recovery (CAIR) program, and Paul Sadler consults within Latrobe Regional Hospital’s Aged Persons Mental Health Service. The authors acknowledge the late Associate Professor Bruce Osborne (Psychogeriatrician) who pioneered and introduced the CAIR program to rural Victoria, Australia. The authors thank Latrobe Regional Hospital for supporting the CAIR program as well as the clients and their carers for participating. The authors also acknowledge the skill and dedication of each mental health practitioner who works in community rural aged psychiatry. Address correspondence to Paul Sadler, MAPS, CCLP, Clinical Psychologist, Latrobe Regional Hospital’s South West Aged Persons Mental Health Service, Wonthaggi Hospital, Graham Street, Wonthaggi, Victoria, Australia, 3995; e-mail: [email protected]
Keywords: severe mental illness / older adults / CAIR / rural based / programs to older / McIlvena

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