Role Play 3- Mental health
You work in a community service that supports vulnerable people after they leave a hospital emergency ward. The services provides case management to assist clients address interrelated psychosocial needs.
Peter has been referred to your service by the Hospital Emergency Department where he presented seeking support for deteriorating mental health and thoughts of self-harm. Peter did not require a hospital admission and has been informed this service will support him in addressing the issues relating to his poor mental health.
You visit Peter in his home. This is the first time you have met Peter and you have been provided with minimal information from the hospital. You need to complete an initial assessment with Peter and together make a plan of how best to support him.
Peter is a 40-year-old man who has worked for 20 years as a labourer, he started having back pain 5 years ago and this has become increasingly worse. Due to pain, Peter is no longer able to do his job, he has to take a lot of time off work and he is financially struggling. Peter is meant to attend physiotherapy for his back injury but ‘doesn’t see the point’. Peter has only ever worked as a labourer and lacks confidence in his ability to do other types of work. He gets very anxious at the thought of attending job interviews so does not go.
Peter has also recently separated from his wife. They used to have a good relationship until Peter lost interest in activities, lost general motivation, and become more negative in his thoughts and spend most of his days just sitting at home watching television. Peter and his wife have two children, Peter used to enjoy playing with the kids, kicking footballs with them, but since his back injury, he gets frustrated with the children, will often shout at them, and finds it difficult to enjoy playing. Peter and his wife find it difficult to communicate with each other without arguing, they need to formalise their separation and organise a schedule for visits with the children but cannot come to an agreement.
Peter currently sees his children on weekends, he tries to take them out for the day, but lacks motivation and they will often just stay home and watch television. His children have started to say they do not want to see Peter on the weekends as he is always angry at them.
Peter used to have friends at work but since leaving the job he no longer sees these people. He is isolated and spends most of his time alone. Although Peter sleeps for long periods, he is always tired, he thinks about exercise but can’t motivate himself to do anything, he has a very low self-esteem. Peter has always enjoyed having a drink with his friends, but he has started to drink alone at home.
Lately Peter can’t seem to see any solutions to his problems and has been having thoughts of ending his life. These thoughts come and go however in the last week it has been worse which is why Peter took himself to the hospital for help. The hospital assessed that Peter did not need to be hospitalised for his mental health and they have referred him to you for case management and linking with appropriate supports in the community.