An Evaluation of Well Ways, a Family Education Programme for Carers of People with a Mental Illness Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • OBJECTIVES: Family education programmes aim to improve the well-being of carers of people with a mental illness. We evaluated the effectiveness of one such programme, Well Ways, in reducing negative care-giving consequences. METHOD: We employed a pre-post design to evaluate the effectiveness of Well Ways in a naturalistic setting using a sample of carers of people with a mental illness. The Involvement Evaluation Questionnaire, a measure of care-giving consequences including worrying, tension, urging and supervision, and incorporating the General Health Questionnaire-12 (GHQ-12), was completed by 459 carers before and after participation in Well Ways. RESULTS: Participants' worrying, tension, urging and distress (GHQ-12) were significantly lower following completion of the programme. These improvements were maintained at 3 and 6 month follow up. Carers of people with a psychotic disorder experienced significantly greater reductions in worrying than did other carers. Females reported significantly greater reductions in tension than did males. CONCLUSIONS: Findings indicated support for the effectiveness of the Well Ways programme in reducing negative care-giving consequences for families of people with a mental illness. Given the evidence of poor psychological health and negatively appraised family relationships observed at baseline, these findings highlight the need for programmes such as Well Ways.

authors

publication date

  • January 2011