People often require a range of supports to meet their various needs. When health and community service providers are working together, we know people have better outcomes. The terms ‘Shared care’, ‘coordinated care’, ‘integrated care’ and ‘collaborative care’ are used interchangeably throughout the literature to describe the joining up of supports.
EMHSCA has been actively supporting improvements to Shared care for the Inner- and Outer- Eastern Melbourne areas with the ‘EMHSCA Shared care protocol’ since 2007.
EMHSCA supports the following practices when working collaboratively with people along their individual recovery journey:
|Know who is involved||Taking a holistic view, identify all of the person's existing supports at intake assessment and seek consent to collaborate, being mindful of potential safety issues for all concerned.|
|Take care when you share||Respect the rights of the person and their family and children, including that of privacy and confidentiality. Know when you can share, when you cannot, and when you must. Always put safety first and check in with your colleagues when making decisions.|
|Look at the whole picture||Seek existing information about the person in order to develop a holistic view of their individual circumstances, resilience factors and relapse signature. Gather a longitudinal history and seek to avoid unnecessary duplication and misunderstandings.|
|Work as a shared care team||Work collaboratively with all relevant formal and informal supports involved as a shared care team, providing timely and relevant access to information. The person must have opportunity to be an active participant of this team and information should be provided in an accessible format. Keep carers in the loop.|
|Keep the person and their family at the centre||Ensure that the identification of the person's recovery, safety and support needs and the identification of personal goals is a collaborative process and that the person and their needs, and the needs of any dependents, are at the centre of all processes and activities. Acknowledge the role of carers (including young carers) and provide clear and timely information and advice.|