Infant Mental Health Network Group Evaluation launched in North Cork

On Friday the 17th of July 2015 Kathleen Lynch, Minister of State at the Department of Health with special responsibility for Primary Care, Social Care (Disabilities & Older People) and Mental Health, visited Mallow Primary Healthcare Centre to help launch research carried out by the HSE North Cork Child & Family Primary Care Psychology Service and the North Cork Community Work Department (HSE and Tusla).

Catherine Maguire and Rochelle Matacz, Clinical Psychologists with the HSE North Cork Child & Family Psychology Services, had identified an increasing number of infants and toddlers presenting with problems associated within attachment, parent-child interaction difficulties, and emotional regulation issues. However no service framework existed for the provision of emotional health services to the 0-3 age group at that time. Consequently they developed the IMH Network model in 2006, an interdisciplinary, community-based network comprising of early years professionals working in statutory and community teams. In 2009 North Cork Child & Family Psychology met with the HSE North Cork Community Work team to explore how IMH networks could be developed in the local community to consolidate and integrate IMH learning into service delivery. Today there are three inter- disciplinary IMH Network groups operating in the North Cork area with high demand for more. 

In order to assess the impact and efficacy of the North Cork IMH network Group model a piece of research was commissioned combining quantitative and qualitative tools. The full research report outlines the key strengths and challenges of the IMH network model, the potential outcomes for infants and their families when IMH practice is applied, the impact of IMH knowledge for frontline early years practitioners, and recommendations at national level. A summary is contained within the following Brochure

Further information can be found on the HSE website IMH Network Group Evaluation North Cork

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