Mental health

Sleep and pain

There is a reciprocal relationship between pain and sleep. Pain interferes with sleep and disturbed sleep contributes to the experience of pain. Because of this reciprocal relationship, it is important to ask patients experiencing pain about their sleep, and in those with sleep disorders, we need to be assessing the contribution of pain. It is also important to be aware that medications such as analgesics and antidepressants used in the management of chronic pain may also have an impact on sleep.

Assessing decision-making capacity: the clinical basics

GPs are in a good position to assess the mental capacity of their patients and it is within the scope of practice of ALL medical practitioners to assess decision-making capacity and obtain informed consent.

GPs have an existing therapeutic relationship with their patients and the benefit of understanding their psychosocial background and longitudinal presentation, which can help in detecting any significant change from their premorbid cognitive functioning and decision-making ability.  

Improving the physical health of those with chronic mental illness

Dr Helen Fulcher, Goodfellow GP Advisor talks with Professor Bruce Arroll about improving the physical health of those with chronic mental illness, including:

  • types of health problems, individual and system wide
  • the impact of psychiatric medication on physical health
  • reducing the effect of prescription medication
  • mitigating health issues for patients
  • the role of screening
  • transition to primary care
  • take home messages.

Insomnia - Bruce Arroll

Podcast: Professor Bruce Arroll talks about managing insomnia in primary care. Bruce is a GP in South Auckland, director of the Goodfellow Unit and professor in general practice and primary care at the University of Auckland.

Resilience, avoiding burnout, and team work in primary care - David Kuhl

Professor David Kuhl talks about resilience and team work in primary care. David is a Professor in the Departments of Family Practice and Urologic Sciences, Faculty of Medicine at the University of British Columbia.

Focussed acceptance & commitment therapy

This online learning  is for clinicians with an interest in mental and or physical health where therapy can be brief, time-limited and available to all who may need it. Thus it will appeal to primary care doctors, nurses, psychologists, counsellors, health coaches and health care assistants. 

Alprazolam and benzodiazepine prescribing - Rob Shieff

Rob Shieff talks about the removal of alprazolam (Xanax) from the New Zealand pharmaceutical schedule and issues around benzodiazepine prescribing. Rob is a general adult psychiatrist practising in Auckland. His special interest is in the evaluation and management of anxiety and mood disorders.

Childhood anxiety - Amy Bird

Dr Amy Bird is a clinical psychologist specialising in anxiety disorders. She is also a lecturer in mental health with the Department of General Practice and Primary Health Care at The University of Auckland.

Introduction to Focussed Acceptance & Commitment Therapy

FACT is focussed Acceptance and Commitment therapy where the aim of therapy is to use ACT principles but to deliver an initial consultations in under 30 minutes and follow up visits in under 15 minutes. Also the therapy should be conducted in fewer than four visits before either referring back to their primary care providers or on to more intense treatment (e.g. community mental health teams or regular psychology visits).

Working with Sexuality and Intimacy

This two day Foundation Course was designed to extend knowledge regarding sexuality and intimacy, ensure you have the most productive way of conceptualising sexual problems and enhance your comfort and skills in dealing with issues of sexuality.


Subscribe to Mental health