Mental Health – Recovery & Risk Workshop | Australian College of Nursing

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Mental Health – Recovery & Risk Workshop

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Mental Health – Recovery & Risk Workshop

The issue: Mental health services increasingly focus on ‘risk management’ to prevent harm to service users, communities, and professional or organisational reputations. This puts services in the invidious position of meeting unsustainable community expectations that force them down a rabbit hole of meds, beds and compulsory treatment, despite Australia’s recovery policy. A recovery-based service offers many more options and people work together to embrace opportunities and share positive risk taking.

About the CPD Face to Face Course 

This face to face course is conducted over one day and is equivalent to 7 continuing professional development (CPD) hours*.

*Please note that this program is subject to change.

Who should attend?

This one-day interactive workshop is designed for all nurses and other mental health professionals to explore concepts, different perspectives and new practices to develop a recover approach to risk. 

14 December 2017 - Sydney NSW

Australian College of Nursing
Level 6, 9 Wentworth Street
PARRAMATTA, NSW 2150 Australia

Registration link




About the workshop
This workshop explores risk thinking in society and in mental health services. The concept of risk is broadened to include the very different perspectives of service users. The lens of risk is also flipped to a lens of opportunity – an equally important consideration. We then explore the implications for a recovery approach to risk in the ways nurses can show leadership in the clinical setting. This includes recovery-based tools for working with risk, dealing with crises, hopelessness and anger, and using a risk audit.

Key learning outcomes

  • The drivers and impact of risk management in mental health
  • Risk from the perspective of people who use services
  • The features of a recovery approach to risk
  • Practices for applying a recovery approach to risk


Mary O’Hagan

Mary O’Hagan was a key initiator of the psychiatric survivor movement in New Zealand in the late 1980s, and was the first chairperson of the World Network of Users and Survivors of Psychiatry between 1991 and 1995. She has been an advisor to the United Nations and the World Health Organization. 
Mary was a full-time Mental Health Commissioner in New Zealand between 2000 and 2007. Mary is now director of the international social enterprise PeerZone, which provides peer-led resources for people with mental distress and the people who support them in employment, higher education and mental health services. 
Mary has written an award-winning memoir called ‘Madness Made Me’. She was made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit in 2015 and was awarded the Wellington Gold Awards New Thinking Award in 2017. All Mary’s work has been driven by her quest for social justice for one of the most marginalised groups in our communities.

Student testimonials
‘Mary’s presentation was powerful, stimulating and ground-breaking. The audience responses were overwhelming.’
‘Mary has a certain consumer determination that digs people out of their ruts and puts them in the real world.’ 
‘I appreciate Mary’s humour, intellect and sharing of her life experiences.’
‘I could listen to Mary for ages. She speaks so honestly and directly.’
‘Mary has done some amazing work and I appreciate her insight.’


Introductions and expectations of workshop


What is recovery?

What is risk?


Morning tea


Broadening the concept of risk


Flipping the concept of risk




Positive risk taking


Working in the conflicted zone


Afternoon tea


Recovery and risk audits


Evaluation and close

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