The CORE Study

  • Project Leader

    Dr Victoria Palmer
    T: +61 3 8344 4987
    E: v.palmer@unimelb.edu.au
    W: Personal web page

    Location: Department of General Practice, Primary Care Research Unit, 200 Berkeley Street, Carlton Victoria 3053.

Project Details

The CORE Study is a world first trial that aims to build an evidence base about engagement in service re-design and psychosocial recovery.  Over four years (2013-2017) CORE will test if a modified version of the novel Mental Health Experience Co-Design (MH ECO) improves psychosocial recovery for people living with severe mental illness.  MH ECO is a structured method to facilitate service user, carers and frontline staff of mental health services engagement in the development and implementation of change processes to improve service experiences. The study adopts a stepped wedge cluster randomised controlled trial design.

Participants include staff, service users and carers recruited across metropolitan and regional Victoria, Australia community mental health services. The intervention is a modified version of Mental Health Experience Co-Design (MH ECO) that will be delivered to 30 service users, up to 30 carers and 10 staff from nine participating teams.

Led by Dr Victoria Palmer (Researcher in Primary Mental Health Care), this 4-year study is being conducted in partnership with the Victorian Mental Illness Awareness Council and Tandem, the peak body representing mental health carers across the state.  Final results from the trial will be published in 2017-2018.

Researchers

Dr Victoria Palmer, Lead Investigator, Department of General Practice (University of Melbourne)
Professor Jane Gunn, Department of General Practice (University of Melbourne)
Professor Helen Herrman, Orygen: The National Centre for Excellence in Youth Mental Health)
Rosemary Callander Department of General Practice (The University of Melbourne)
Mr Wayne Weavell, Department of General Practice (University of Melbourne), Expertise in Consumer Research
Associate Professor John Furler, Department of General Practice (University of Melbourne)
Dr Donella Piper, School of Health (University of New England), Expertise in Health Service Management
Professor Rick Iedema Monash Warwick Professor of Healthcare Improvement and Implementation Science, Monash Centre for Health Research and Implementation, School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences
Associate Professor David Pearce, Department of Rural Health (University of Melbourne)
Dr Patty Chondros, Biostatistician, Department of General Practice (University of Melbourne)
Ms Konstancja Densley, Data Manager, Department of General Practice (University of Melbourne)
Ms Kali Godbee, Senior Research Assistant and Trial Coordination, Department of General Practice (University of Melbourne)
Ms Roxanne Kritharidis, Research Support Officer and Intervention Coordinator, Department of General Practice (University of Melbourne)
Ms Maria Potiriadis, Trial Coordinator, Department of General Practice (University of Melbourne)

Collaborators

Collaborating partners include Victorian Mental Illness Awareness Council (VMIAC) and Tandem: Representing Victorian mental health carers.

Funding

The CORE study is funded by the Mental Illness Research Fund and the Psychiatric Illness an Intellectual Disability Donations Trust Fund (MIRF). The Mental Illness Research Fund aims to support the collaborative research into mental illness that may lead to better treatment and recovery outcomes for Victorians with mental illness and their families and carers.

Research Outcomes

Publications

  • Palmer VJ, Chondros  P, Piper D, Callander R, Weavell W, Godbee K, Potiriadis M, Richard L,  Densely, K, Herrman H, Furler J, Pierce D, Schuster T, Iedema R,  Gunn J. The CORE study protocol: a stepped wedge cluster randomised controlled trial to test a co-design technique to optimise psychosocial recovery outcomes for people affected by mental illness in the community mental health setting. BMJ Open 2015; 5(3):
  • Palmer V, and the CORE study team. Getting to the CORE of the links between engagement, experience and recovery outcomes. New Paradigm 2015; Summer: 41-45.
  • Whitley R, Palmer V, Gunn J. Recovery from Severe Mental Illness. Canadian Medical Association Journal CMAJ 2015 22 September; 187(13): 951-952.
  • Whitley R. Palmer V. Gunn J. Harnessing Primary Care to Enhance Recovery from Severe Mental Illness. British Journal of General Practice 2015; 65 (637): 429-30.

Conference Presentations

  • Palmer V, Godbee K, Richard L, Piper D, Callander R, Weavell W, Furler J, Pierce D, Herrman H, Gunn J. A relational model of engagement to recruit people with severe mental illness and their carers to a cluster randomised controlled trial (The CORE Study) (Poster). Presented at the International Qualitative Methods Conference 26-28 April 2015, Melbourne Australia.
  • Palmer V, Richard L, Godbee K, Piper D, Callander R, Weavell W, Herrman H, Furler J, Pierce D, Gunn J, Iedema R. A relational model of engagement: recruitment and retention of people with serious mental illnesses, their carers and staff to a complex intervention in the community mental health setting. Presented to the PHCRIS Conference 29-31 July 2015, Adelaide Australia.
  • Palmer V, Weavell W, Callander R. Translating experience based co-design into a best practice reality for mental health service design and planning. Presented to The Mental Health Services (THEMHS) Conferences August 26-28th 2015, Canberra Australia.
  • Palmer V, Chondros P, Piper D, et al., 2014 The CORE Study Protocol: a stepped wedge cluster randomised controlled trial to test a co-design techniques to optimise psychosocial recovery outcomes for people affected by mental illness in the community mental health setting. Presented at the 15th International Mental Health Conference – Mental Health: Innovation, Integration, Early Intervention 25-27 August 2014, Gold Coast, Australia.
  • Callander R, Weavell W, Palmer V,  Ban L. (2013). Getting to the CORE: Testing a co-design technique to optimise psychosocial recovery outcomes for people affected by mental illness. Presentation at the Mental Health Services Conference “Forging the Future: Challenging Attitudes! Creating Connections! Transforming Lives”, 20-23 August, Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre, South Wharf, Melbourne Victoria.
  • Callander R, Weavell W, Fairhurst K. (2013) MH ECO. Presentation at the Mental Health Services Conference “Forging the Future: Challenging Attitudes! Creating Connections! Transforming Lives”, 20-23 August, Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre, South Wharf, Melbourne Victoria.

Invited Presentations

  • Palmer V. 2015. The engagement nexus and psychosocial recovery. MIND Colloquium Series 22nd July 2015, Melbourne Australia.
  • Palmer V. 2015. The engagement nexus and psychosocial recovery: the CORE study. Presented to the Adult Mental Clinical Leaders meeting of the Department of Health and Human Services 24th September 2015.
  • Palmer V. 2015. The engagement nexus and psychosocial recovery: the CORE study. Presented to the Adult Mental Clinical Leaders meeting of the Department of Health and Human Services 13th October 2015
  • Furler J. (2013).Getting to the CORE: Testing a co-design technique to optimise psychosocial recovery outcomes for people affected by mental illness. Presentation at the launch of the MIRF launch. 7th August, Melbourne Victoria.

International Presentations

  • Palmer V. 2014. Getting to the CORE – the journey so far. Presented to the Experience Based Co-Design in Mental Health UK network. 10 September 2014. South Bank, London South Bank University.
  • Palmer V. 2014. The CORE Study Protocol: a stepped wedge cluster randomised controlled trial to test a co-design technique to optimise psychosocial recovery outcomes for people affected by mental illness in the community mental health setting. Presented to the Health Experiences Research Institute, Nuffield Department of Primary Health Care Sciences 18 September 2014, Oxford, The University of Oxford.
  • Chondros P. (2013). Testing the effectiveness of a co-design technique to optimise psychosocial recovery: a stepped wedge cluster randomised trial. Presentation at the Centre for Primary Care and Public Health, Blizard Institute, Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, 17 July, 2013, London, England.
  • Gunn J. (2012). Getting to the CORE: Testing a co-design technique to optimise psychosocial recovery outcomes for people affected by mental illness, Forum for International collaborative research initiative to design interventions for patients with multi-morbidity in primary health care, North American Primary Care Research Group meeting, New Orleans, USA.

Research Publications

Palmer VJ, Chondros P, Piper D, Callander R, Weavell W, Godbee K, Potiriadis M, Richard L, Densely K, Herrman H, Furler J, Pierce D, Schuster T, Iedema R,  Gunn J.  The CORE study protocol: a stepped wedge cluster randomised controlled trial to test a co-design technique to optimise psychosocial recovery outcomes for people affected by mental illness in the community mental health setting. BMJ Open 2015; 5(3):

Research Group

Mental Health



Faculty Research Themes

Neuroscience

School Research Themes

Neuroscience & Psychiatry



Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact the research group leader.

Department / Centre

General Practice

Unit / Centre

Mental Health