Looking back at the seminar "Involvement of peer support workers to care in psychiatric acute wards"

Looking back at the seminar
In November 2019, we invited Norwegian mental health experts to attend a seminar on the topic of involving peer consultants in acute inpatient psychiatric care settings. What was the seminar like and what are the challenges and added value for involving peer support workers in acute care in the Czech Republic?

Peer support workers are people who have their own lived experience of mental illness, which they use to support patients / clients in the care provided. Among other things, it brings elements of hope to the care and gives the client motivation and support. We currently have approximately 100 peer support workers in services in the Czech Republic. Although some of them work in psychiatric hospitals, they have not yet been involved in acute care, as in Norway.

The aim of the two-day seminar (21-22 November 2019) was to share experiences with the involvement of peers in psychiatric wards in the Czech Republic and Norway and to identify the possibilities of extending this practice to acute care in the Czech Republic. Our invitations to the seminar were accepted by Bengt Eirik Karlsson and Marit Borg, who are experts in the field of acute care in psychiatric wards, and Monika Nordhus Landsverk, who herself works as a peer consultant in these conditions.

The first day of the seminar included an introduction to our Norwegian colleagues in the form of a visit to the Bohnice Psychiatric Hospital, which provides acute care, and a mutual discussion with peer consultants, health professionals and hospital management. On the second day, a large number of participants held a seminar for the professional public. Director of our organization Pavel Říčan, representative of PN Bohnice Marek Páv and our Norwegian guests B.E. Karlsson, M. Borg and M. N. Landsverk shared their presentations on the subject. In the afternoon, an interesting workshop was held with all participants of the seminar, where opportunities and barriers for the involvement of peer support workers in the Czech Republic were discussed.

The outcome of the seminar is Preliminary Analysis of Barriers for Involvementof Peer Support Workers in Acute Care in the Czech Republic, which we are very happy to share with all those interested in the topic.

Here you can see the photo gallery from the seminar and if you are interested we also share the materials of our guests, which they presented at the seminar:
Presentation 1: Bengt Eirik Karlsson & Marit Borg
Presentation 2: Monika Nordhus Landsverk
The seminar was very inspiring to spread foreign experience to the corners of our country. We thank our Norwegian colleagues for their participation and we look forward to seeing you again in the future.