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You are to design a qualitative research project, on behalf of the Trust, to address the issues described in the Overview above. Please do this by providing answers to the questions below using the Template document. ?An example answer is provided in the Assessments section. Note that there may be slight differences in the questions within the example compared to the questions below.

Consider the following questions:

1.  What is your overarching research aim (purpose statement) and principal research ?question or objective? (200 words) Please include:

·         Overarching research aim (purpose statement)

·         Study objective/research question

2.  Explain your sampling approach. Who are your participants likely to be? Why have you chosen these participants? What insights do you expect from the data they provide and how will these inform your research objective? (300 words)

3.  What research design would be most appropriate? Please include which data collection methods you would use, and why. Explain why you believe this to be the most appropriate study design. How will you ensure reliability, validity of the study. What limitations does this study have.Also discuss timelines for your study. (700 words

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1. Research aim

1.1. Proposal statement

The present research aims to "identify the benefits of collaborating with peer workers to mental health care program". The objective of this work is to understand the service requirements that can be supported by peer workers, the benefits for the service users, identification of risk, and finding possible mitigation strategies to improve the clinical outcomes for community members.

1.2. Study objective

According to Ali et al. (2015), the support from peer workers within the framework of healthcare programs is proved to be worthy in a variety of ways. For example, it can reduce the burden on professionals, provide education and mental support to the patient, and can facilitate other requirements within the scope of improving community health.

Using this understanding, the involvement of peer workers as a support role for the mental health program is the motivation of this work. In particular, the key requirements to establish this partnership and the possible limitations will be elucidated in this work (Chinman et al., 2015). Furthermore, identifying the required measures, establishing the strategic framework, and preparing a robust plan can help is achieving efficiency out of this partnership. This work is believed to be helpful for similar healthcare programs by identifying disservice requirements that can be supported and clearly demonstrating the responsibilities.

2. Sampling approach

2.1. Participants

The participants in this program will be the health workers, who will be working in collaboration with physicians, nurses, psychiatrist, and allied professionals having a specialty for mental health Management. Notably, the participants must have a basic educational qualification, such that they can understand the medical terminology and health aspects, to contribute to this program.

2.2. Why chosen them

Participants, who are willing to involved in mental health programs, will be selected for this study. The objective here is to identify rules that can be assigned to peer groups, which in turn can you reduce the work burden on healthcare professionals (Etikan, Musa & Alkassim, 2016). More importantly, they must have the basic educational qualification and optimum communication skills. These criteria are set for the purpose that they can collaborate effectively in the assessment, providing education, supporting mental health, and addressing the concern of career or family members.

2.3. Insight expected from the data

Following are the insights that are expected from this study:

           Identification of exact roles that can be handled by peer workers.

           Estimation for the number of workers required in the program can be obtained.

           Specific areas that require additional training and education for peer workers, can be identified.

           Evaluation of communication strategies can be determined.

           Alignment of the health program objective with the responsibilities shared by peer workers can be made explicit and clear.

           Associated limitation and risk with this collaboration can be identified and the corresponding mitigation strategies can be designed.

The above point illustrates the requirement of this study, which in turn can help in making this collaboration effective. In particular, the most important insight is related to the associated risk as well as the limitations, following which suitable strategies can be adopted (Ali, Farrer, Gulliver & Griffiths, 2015).

3. Research design

The first requirement is to understand the support that can be provided by peer workers in the mental health program. The overview of this can be obtained from previous research reports, literature review, and random clinical trials (Ellison et al., 2015).

The qualitative research design that will be used in this study is focus group interviews. In particular, focus interviews are helpful because they enrich the study with views, opinion, and shared experience, on the concerned matter. In this procedure, the groups will comprise of two to three participants.

In the next step, the identification of potential peer workers who are either experienced in this field or have the motivation to contribute to the community mental health programs will be the main criteria. Note that, in the present study, the service user group of the Trust are the peer-workers. This is selected with the objective that service user view within the involvement of mental healthcare program can be evaluated precisely. The qualitative research design that will be used in this study is focus group interviews. In particular, focus interviews are helpful because they enrich the study with views, opinion, and shared experience, on the concerned matter. In this procedure, the groups will comprise of two to three participants using a purposive sampling approach. The participants will be confirmed by giving consent. The focus groups will be designed, one of which will receive facilitator and co-facilitator that will train them about the roles and responsibilities. However, another focus group no background information will be given to the participants.

The aim here is to obtain views from participants by creating concepts and categories related to the support framework in the mental health program. Furthermore, the method is also effective because there will be no constraint on the discussion, and collective views from participants regarding functionality, communication, work environment, and previous experience in mental health care settings can be obtained.

3.1. Data collection method

The data collection method will be primarily based on focused group interviews. This includes the multiple choice questions, with which, identification of skills for training as well as the specific areas in which the peer groups can contribute, can be revealed. The team conducting the study will include 2 experienced researcher and a researcher involved in design and planning. The interview questions that will be included are:

-           What factors promote the involvement of peer workers in mental healthcare program?

-           What factors demotivates the involvement of peer workers in mental healthcare program?

-           What are the working attitudes expected from the peer-workers and professionals in such a program?

-           How did the involvement of peer workers and healthcare professionals can be improved in mental healthcare program?

3.2. A justification for the methods

The present method includes a focused group interviews, the first collection of data from both peer workers. As mentioned above, the service-users of the trust are peer workers, from which the data will be collected. Thus, the information obtained can be directly linked with the program approach and further amendment in the strategies will be feasible. (Etikan, Musa & Alkassim, 2016). According to Cyr, J. (2016), the advantage of the questionnaire survey is that firsthand information can be obtained and the possibilities of business can be avoided. As a result of which, the information obtained would be reliable for making decisions. However, it is important that the participants must be aware of the objective of the program and shall give accurate information in the survey. The method is selected with the objective of collecting information directly from the people engaged in the program. As a result of which, the clear indication for the concern, specific areas of responsibility and support, and the appropriate number of workers to be engaged can be identified.

3.3. Reliability and validity of the study

The adopted questions for the focused interviews are based on analysis of similar research work in the field of mental health programs (Wentzel et al., 2016; Jordans, Luitel, Pokhrel & Patel, 2016; Farrelly et al., 2016). The adopted strategy ensure that framed questions are validand appropriate according to the previous researchers. More importantly, the collection of information is from professionals and workers who are directly involved in the program. Thus, there will be a limited scope of biases, and the strategic decisions made can be directly related to the competencies, perspectives, opinion, and ideology of the program participant.

3.4. Limitations

Following are associated limitations of this study:

           The specific areas that will be identified for training purposes, might cause conflict.This will be linked with power dynamics imbalance between the responsibility and positioning of peer-workers and professionals.

           Communication strategy can vary among the leaders of healthcare professional and the personnel involved in the actual program. A clear ideology of appropriate communication style can only be determined during real-time practice (Cabassa, Camacho, Vélez-Grau & Stefancic, 2017).

           Consideration of the patient is not involved in this work. This might lead to alteration in certain strategies during the actual program.

           The number of participants from healthcare professionals and peer workers can affect the decision-making process.

3.5. Timelines

Following timeline is prepared for this work which is for next six-months. The program duration will be from Apr 2019 to Sep 2019.The first step in this work will be the literature review for collecting ideas and overviews regarding peer worker support in a mental care program. This phase will be continuing from 01 Apr-15 Apr. The second phase will be dedicated to collect consent from participants (the service users of Trust) from 15 Apr-20 Apr. In parallel, scheduling the interview session, group education, and design of the focused interviews will be accomplished from 15 Apr-30 Apr. The interviews and data collection will be done during the month of May. Further reliability of the method by reviewing the answers will be performed during 01 Jun-15 Jun. Data analysis will be performed from 01 Jun to 31 Aug. The preparation of strategies and proposition for the review of Trust will be prepared during 16 Jun-31 Aug and afterwards, the report will be prepared in the month of Sep. The involved experienced researchers will be involved in designing the focus interview and data collection. They will also be engaged in monitoring the interview session. Another researcher will be involved in planning, literature review, data collection, analysis, and report preparation.

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