Mental Health First Aid for School Nurses

March 20, 2014 in  Winston-Salem
March 26, 2014 in Marion
April 3, 2014 in Salisbury

April 8, 2014 in Raleigh
April 15, 2014 in Williamston

All sessions are full.

Overview | Target Audience | Sponsors | Course Objectives | AgendaEvaluation and CE Credit | Scheduled Dates and Locations | Registration and Fees | Cancellation and Refund Policies


Mental Health First Aid is an 8-hour course that teaches one how to help someone who is developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis. The training helps one identify, understand, and respond to signs of mental illnesses and substance use disorders.

Mental Health First Aid was created in 2001 by Betty Kitchener, a nurse specializing in health education, and Anthony Jorm, a mental health literacy professor. Kitchener and Jorm run Mental Health First Aid™ Australia, a national non-profit health promotion charity focused on training and research. The United States is just one of the many countries that have adapted the program from Australia.

Mental Health First Aid is an international program proven to be effective. Peer-reviewed studies published in Australia, where the program originated, show that individuals trained in the program:

  • Grow their knowledge of signs, symptoms and risk factors of mental illnesses and addictions.
  • Can identify multiple types of professional and self-help resources for individuals with a mental illness or addiction.
  • Increase their confidence in and likelihood to help an individual in distress.
  • Show increased mental wellness themselves.

Studies also show that the program reduces the social distance created by negative attitudes and perceptions of individuals with mental illnesses. Mental Health First Aid USA is listed in the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices. NREPP is a searchable database of mental health and substance abuse interventions to help the public find programs and practices that may best meet their needs and learn how to implement them in their communities. All interventions in the registry have been independently assessed and rated for quality of research and readiness for dissemination.

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Target Audience

School nurses across the State of North Carolina and Regional School Nurse Consultants employed by the Division of Public Health, Children and Youth Branch.

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  • NC Children and Youth Branch – Division of Public Health
  • NC Institute for Public Health, Gillings School of Global Public Health, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

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Course Objectives

Participants will demonstrate ability to:

  • Recognize signs of addictions and mental illnesses;
  • Implement a 5-step action plan to assess a situation and help;
  • Recall the impact of mental and substance use disorders; and
  • Identify local resources and where to turn for help.

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8:00 – 8:30 am Check-in
8:30 – 9:10 Welcome
Overview of the course
Overview of the manual
Overview of Mental Health First Aid
What is your role?
9:10 – 10:10 Mental health problems in the USA
Prevalence of mental disorders
Adolescent development
MHFA and the spectrum of interventions
MHFA action plan
10:10 – 10:25 BREAK
10:25 – 11:45 Signs and symptoms
Nonsuicidal self-injury
Risk factors for developing a mental health disorder
Protective factors
11:45 am – 12:45 pm LUNCH
12:45 – 2:00 MHFA action plan
Action ‘A’ – Assess for risk of suicide or harm
What do you do?  Using the ALGEE Action Plan
Approaching the Youth
Action ‘L’ – Listen non-judgmentally
Action ‘G’ – Give reassurance and information
2:00 – 2:15 BREAK
2:15 – 2:45 Action ’E’ –  Encourage appropriate professional help
Action ‘E’ –  Encourage self-help and other support strategies
2:45 – 3:00 BREAK
3:00 – 4:20 Mental Health First Aid for crisis situations
Action ‘A’ – assess for risk of suicide or self-harm
Other crises
Taking care of the first aider
4:20 – 5:00 Final questions
Wrapping up
MHFA exam
Evaluations and certificates


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Evaluation and CE Credit

Participants are evaluated on their ability to role-play throughout the course and performance on a final written test.  Certificate of training is awarded for 60% success per requirement of Mental Health First Aid USA. CEUs will be awarded for successful completion of this course.

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Scheduled Dates and Locations

  • Thursday, March 20:  Northwest Region, The Gathering Place, 601 N. Cherry Street, Winston-Salem, NC (Forsyth County) This session is full.
  • Wednesday, March 26:  Western Region, McDowell County Public Schools, Technology Training Lab, 334 South Main Street, Marion, NC This session is full.
  • Thursday, April 3: Southwest Region, Horizons Unlimited, 1636 Parkview Circle, Salisbury, NC (Rowan County) This session is full.
  • Tuesday, April 8: Central Region, NC Division of Public Health, Six Forks Campus, 5605 Six Forks Road., Raleigh, NC (Wake County) This session is full.
  • Tuesday, April 15: Northeast Region, The TeleCenter, 415 East Boulevard, Williamston, NC (Martin County) This session is full.

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Registration and fees

Fees: $20

All registration fees must be postmarked no later than March 15, 2014, or your registration will be cancelled.


Important Note Before You Register:

When you click “Go to Registration” below, you will be taken to our new registration page. You will see a list of our programs arranged by date. Find the program you want to register for, and click “Register Now” next to it. You will then go to a login page where you can set up an account, which you will be able to use every time you register for an NCIPH program, or you can login if you have an existing account.

If you have any questions about this new system, please contact us at

Go to Registration


Confirmation of Registration
Confirmation of registration will be done only by e-mail. If you do not have e-mail capability, please give us a colleague’s e-address so we can transmit your confirmation.

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Cancellation and Refund Policies

If you find that you cannot attend this course you must cancel no later than March 15, 2014. Any cancellation received after March 15 will be charged the full registration fee. All cancellations must be received in writing. You may send cancellations to Jackie McIver at Substitutions from the same organization are allowed at any time with prior notification to

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