Task:  Write a briefing paper on the mental health service system in ONE of the following countries – Canada, India, Uganda and New Zealand.

Description: Imagine the health minister in your chosen country has requested a briefing paper to guide mental health system reform. Write a report describing the key elements of the mental health service system in one country of your choice (Canada, India, Uganda and New Zealand) and recommended reform directions.

For your chosen country, your briefing paper should:

  1. Summarise the governance structure for mental health services in that country, including the division of key roles and responsibilities across different levels of government, government departments, or private providers;
  2. Describe the financing arrangements that drive the mental health service system;
  3. Synthesise available information to provide a system-level overview of the types of mental health services provided, where they are provided and how they are accessed by consumers;
  4. Identify the mental health treatment rate (i.e. what percentage of people with mental illness access services);
  5. Appraise the state and structure of the mental health workforce;
  6. Distinguish one key gap (weakness) in the mental health service system and explain why it is important to address;
  7. Compare and contrast some potential strategies to address your chosen gap, drawing on relevant academic and grey literature; and
  8. Recommend your preferred approach to address that gap, based on the evidence, and noting any challenges that might exist in implementing your recommendation.

To obtain maximum marks, your description should link different elements of the system you have described together in a logical and coherent mapping. Note there is no single correct ‘answer’ to address service gaps. Your mark will depend on your ability to apply concepts presented in this course, gather information from a range of sources, and critically appraise available evidence.

The word limit for this assessment is 2,500 words.

Checklist for writing your assignment:

  1. Referencing: any recognised referencing system is fine to use. If in doubt, we recommend you use APA
  2. Do NOT add a cover page. Just create your own title page as follows.
  3. Title page: please use a title page which gives the course code and title, your name and student number, the assignment title and the word count.
  4. Word count: 2500 words.
  5. Font: 11 point Arial.
  6. Spacing: 1.5
  7. Header on each page except the first one: course code and title, assignment number.
  8. Footer: your name and page number.
  9. Use of headings: optional.
  10. Audience: mental health experts in the field.
  11. First person: the use of ‘I’ and ‘my plan’ and ‘my ideas’ are allowable in context but mainly your paper should show an expert opinion in the third person.
  12. Footnotes, tables and appendices: minimal use only.
  13. Read the FAQs for this assignment.

Briefing Paper

Imagine the health minister in your chosen country has requested a briefing paper to guide mental health system reform. Write a report describing the key elements of the mental health service system in one country of your choice and recommended reform directions.

For your chosen country, your briefing paper should:

 • Summarise the governance structure for mental health services in that country, including the division of key roles and responsibilities across different levels of government, government departments, or private providers;

 • Describe the financing arrangements that drive the mental health service system

• Synthesise available information to provide a system-level overview of the types of mental health services provided, where they are provided and how they are accessed by consumers;

• Identify the mental health treatment rate (i.e. what percentage of people with mental illness access services);

• Appraise the state and structure of the mental health workforce;

• Distinguish one key gap (weakness) in the mental health service system and explain why it is important to address;

• Compare and contrast some potential strategies to address your chosen gap, drawing on relevant academic and grey literature; and

• Recommend your preferred approach to address that gap, based on the evidence, and noting any challenges that might exist in implementing your recommendation.

To obtain maximum marks, your description should link different elements of the system you have described together in a logical and coherent mapping. Note there is no single correct ‘answer’ to address service gaps. Your mark will depend on your ability to apply concepts presented in this course, gather information from a range of sources, and critically appraise available evidence.

Choosing a ‘gap’

• The task asks you to “Distinguish one key gap (weakness) in the mental health service system and explain why it is important to address”.

• System gaps are not health problems (e.g. high prevalence of depression in the community, comorbidities of people with mental illness) or social determinants (e.g. impact of poverty on mental illness).

 • A system gap is a problem with the way the current mental health system operates which has an impact on health outcomes or the experience of people accessing services. For example (not exhaustive), gaps in:

– The availability of and access to services

– Coordination across parts of the system

– The distribution of services or workforce across the country

 – Access to or appropriateness of services for certain populations

 – The quantity or quality/effectiveness of care available to people using services

• Try to pick a narrower, more specific topic than those listed above to help focus your discussion. Read commentaries about your chosen country.

Q&As

QUESTION: How do I structure Assignment 2?

ANSWER: If you are not sure where to start, it is recommended that you follow the rough structure suggested in the assignment topic – i.e. start with information about the mental health system in your country of choice (#1-5), narrow down the topic by explaining which gap will be the focus of the rest of your assignment and why, and focus the remainder of your assignment on exploring evidence-based recommendations for addressing this gap, with reference to relevant academic and grey literature in the area. As per the marking criteria, this section should be a critical appraisal of possible options with evidence of reading, and recommendation about a suitable approach. The task also requires “noting any challenges that might exist in implementing your recommendation”. A brief conclusion which ties off the main content is good practice to ensure your main points are clear. You can choose a different format for your assignment as long as it is logical and covers all the required points, but this is a sensible starting structure if you are lost.

Please refer back to the assignment topic and marking criteria as you go. You can use the relative percentage weightings for each marking criterion as a guide for how much of your assignment should focus on each area.

QUESTION: I am having difficulty identifying an appropriate gap in the mental health service system to discuss for the assignment. Can you give me any ideas or direction? 

ANSWER: As general advice we recommend that you pick a gap that interests you, but are also strategic in selecting a topic that you are able to write about to meet the guidelines and marking criteria. Don’t make life unnecessarily difficult for yourself by picking an obscure gap that makes finding resources or writing the assignment difficult.The best starting point to find a system gap would be to do a quick literature search on articles or reports which have already identified gaps in the mental health system in your country of interest and pick one of those. This will also make it easier to find literature on possible solutions. For example, in Australia the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry and Medical Journal of Australia often have commentaries by prominent psychiatric researchers on these kinds of topics. There has also been a National Review of Mental Health Programmes and Services which provides some useful pointers on gaps in the system. The results and publications from mental health surveys often indicate areas requiring further policy attention.To justify your gap, it is easiest to find evidence or opinions you can quote to support that the gap exists, either from statistics or reputable sources (such as an academic journal article or commentary, or a report from a government body) – e.g. has a prominent mental health bureaucrat/clinician/researcher/consumer organisation said this is a gap; is there evidence that alternative services would be more effective and efficient for this population; is there evidence of system failure; or qualitative data from consumers that they can’t access certain services or that their treatment is problematic?

QUESTION: A country I have chosen for the assignment has national legislation but each state/province/territory is responsible for its own health care. Do I focus on the country as a whole or do I pick a specific state to focus on?

ANSWER: The assignment question asks for a country level overview, however, we recognize that you may not be able to provide a complete and detailed appraisal of governance and services for the central government and each state in a country like Denmark in 2500 words. What you can do, however, is describe how directives/responsibilities/resourcing are managed across federal and state levels, and then discuss overarching issues and challenges.

QUESTION: Is a social determinant of mental health (e.g. poverty) an appropriate ‘gap’ for this assignment?

ANSWER: Understanding the social-environmental and political-economic dimensions of mental health and illness are critically important to improving mental health. As many people in the global mental health movement have argued (e.g. Vikram Patel), social justice initiatives are mental health initiatives too. However, the question for Assignment 2 asks you to look for a ‘gap (weakness) in the mental health service system’, and the assignment is services focused. Thus, focusing on social justice initiatives that aim to alleviate mental illness falls out of scope of this particular assessment piece.

If you are interested in this topic, we encourage you to read some of the literature by Lund and colleagues (see Module 1: social determinants of mental health) on social justice initiatives for improving mental health.

QUESTION: Is a mental health issue (e.g. depression or youth suicide) an appropriate ‘gap’ for this assignment?

ANSWER: For the assignment you have been asked to discuss a gap in the service system. Service gaps are the specific holes, or shortcomings in services in a system or location. The suicide rate in a country, or high occurrence of a particular mental illness in a population, is a statement about prevalence. It is not a statement about a ‘gap’ in the service system as such. There could be a range of reasons for a higher prevalence of mental illness within a certain area or population subset; some of these might be genetic or environmental and not necessarily the result of system failures. However, the adequacy of access to and delivery of services within the mental health system to address that prevalence would identify gaps. If you would like to focus on a particular mental health issue, then make sure you frame your gap in relation to a weakness in the service system in your chosen country in responding to that mental health issue.

QUESTION: I want to discuss a particular mental health service gap in my chosen country that is not covered in the course modules. Is that okay?

ANSWER: You do not need to feel limited by the areas discussed in the modules. We encourage you to focus on areas of mental health you think are important. What matters for this assignment is that you: (1) clearly and concisely justify that your chosen area represents an important services gap in your chosen country; and (2) you draw on a sound body of relevant literature from which you can draw recommendations for improvements. We recommend students be pragmatic in the gap they choose. If there is a complete absence of relevant resources, then we suggest the student may want to choose a different gap.

QUESTION: Can the potential strategies and recommendation be a model which has been implemented in one country which could work in another country too?

ANSWER: Yes, this is a sensible approach where country-specific information is lacking. You will need to clearly justify why you think this model would be appropriate and likely to work in your chosen country.

QUESTION: How detailed does the recommendation section need to be for this assessment? Do we need to suggest a specific way that mental health care should be delivered, such as the delivery method, tools for diagnosis, training materials, changes in allocation of funding, and evaluation of the recommended intervention?  

ANSWER: Your recommendation should largely follow on from the evidence you’ve reviewed into possible options to resolve your identified gap. That is, your recommendations should be well supported by existing evidence, either from expert opinion or pilot studies in your country of choice, or from other similar countries. As this assignment is focused on systems-level thinking, the level of detail should be at that required for a national health minister to guide policy and service reform. Therefore, specific detail about the content of training materials and sessions, or the particular tools that should be used to diagnose mental illness, is likely too much detail. However, recommending that an evidence-based package of training materials already in existence might be applied to your country’s setting could be appropriate (without going into too much detail about the content of that package). Similarly, talking about service delivery methods in terms of the types of services and professionals that should be in the mental health system and how they will interact at a high level would be appropriate, but discussing the detail of specific medications or therapies that should be available within a provider-patient setting is probably too much detail (depending on your topic). You might want to talk broadly about how to shift funding allocations across the system, but you don’t need to include the exact dollar amounts.

Overall, remember to think from a whole-system perspective and to be guided by the research evidence and recommendations from experts in the area. So for example if you are recommending a training program, you need to have justified this choice based on evidence and in comparison to other possible solutions for your identified gap. You are asked to note any challenges to implementing your recommendations but you don’t need to develop a full implementation plan.

QUESTION: Is there a limit to the number of references to be used in Assignment 2? Approximately how many references would you expect for this assignment? 

ANSWER: We are interested in the appropriateness of references rather than quantity per se. We expect to see enough references that we feel confident that you have exercised ‘due diligence’ in regards to researching and considering different options relating to the mental health system and the treatment gap you discuss. It seems unlikely, for example, that <5 references could provide enough information of suitable quality to convince us of this. Beyond that, however, it is not about reaching a nominal threshold for the “correct” number of references, but more how references are used to support arguments, synthesise information, and show that you have considered multiple sources of information and opinions.  

Order a similar paper and get 15% discount on your first order with us

Dr. Padma Myers
Dr. Padma Myers
98% Success Rate
Read More
“Hello, I deliver nursing papers on time following instructions from the client. My primary goal is customer satisfaction. Welcome for plagiarism free papers”
Stern Frea
Stern Frea
98% Success Rate
Read More
Hi! I am an English Language and Literature graduate; I have written many academic essays, including argumentative essays, research papers, and literary analysis.
Dr. Ishid Elsa
Dr. Ishid Elsa
98% Success Rate
Read More
"Hi, count on me to deliver quality papers that meet your expectations. I write well researched papers in the fields of nursing and medicine".
Dr. Paul P. Klug
Dr. Paul P. Klug
99% Success Rate
Read More
"A top writer with proven reliability and experience. I have a 99% success rate, overall rating of 10. Hire me for quality custom written nursing papers. Thank you"

How Our Essay Writing Service Works

Tell Us Your Requirements

Fill out order details and instructions, then upload any files or additional materials if needed. Then, confirm your order by clicking “Place an Order.”

Make your payment

Your payment is processed by a secure system. We accept Mastercard, Visa, Amex, and Discover. We don’t share any informati.on with third parties

The Writing Process

You can communicate with your writer. Clarify or track order with our customer support team. Upload all the necessary files for the writer to use.

Download your paper

Check your paper on your client profile. If it meets your requirements, approve and download. If any changes are needed, request a revision to be done.

Recent Questions

Stay In Touch!

Leave your email and get discount promo codes and the best essay samples from our writers!
Chat with us
WhatsApp Your Assignment!
Hello! Welcome! We have writers online to help you at any time!