EQUIP training the trainers: an evaluation of a training programme for service users and carers involved in training mental health professionals in user-involved care planning

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Accessible summary

What is known on the subject?

What does this paper add to existing knowledge?

What are the implications for practice?


Limited evidence exists on service user and carer perceptions of undertaking a training course for delivering care planning training to qualified mental health professionals. We know little about trainee motivations for engaging with such train the trainers courses, experiences of attending courses and trainees’ subsequent experiences of codelivering training to health professionals, hence the current study.


To obtain participants’ views on the suitability and acceptability of a training programme that aimed to prepare service users and carers to codeliver training to health professionals.


Semi-structured interviews with nine service users and carers attending the training programme. Transcripts were analysed using inductive thematic analysis.


Participants’ reasons for attending training included skill development and making a difference to mental health practice. Course content was generally rated highly but may benefit from review and/or extension to allow the range of topics and resulting professional training programme to be covered in more depth. Trainees who delivered the care planning training reported a mix of expectations, support experiences, preparedness and personal impacts.

Implications for Practice:

Mental health nurses are increasingly coproducing and delivering training with service users and carers. This study identifies possibilities and pitfalls in this endeavour, highlighting areas where user and carer involvement and support structures might be improved in order to fully realize the potential for involvement in training.

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