The Complexities of Problem Solving in Mental Health Settings

  • José HanhamEmail author


Mental health clinicians play a critical role in the preservation of human life. In this chapter, an attempt is made to illustrate some of the complexities faced by mental health clinicians when they encounter situations in which clients are at imminent risk of harm to themselves or others, known as behavioural emergencies. There is a description of the steps that mental clinicians often carry out when diagnosing and treating clients during behavioural emergencies. To provide direct insights into the nature of behavioural emergencies, an excerpt of interview with a mental health clinician is provided. This is followed by a discussion about the nature of clinical expertise, in which some of the factors that may impede the development of expertise in certain facets of mental health practice for some mental health clinicians are discussed. The latter part of the chapter focuses on some suggested strategies that may help mental clinicians effectively prepare for, and/or directly deal with, the challenges that arise in real-world mental health environments. These strategies cover approaches to obtaining feedback, mechanical prediction methods, stress exposure training and case-based learning.


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Western Sydney UniversityPenrithAustralia

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