depressionThe College of Policing has launched a comprehensive review of the guidance available to officers coming into contact with people with mental health issues.

The findings will inform the drafting of an ‘updated set of learning tools’ for officers and staff, as well as a new iteration of Authorised Professional Practice.

Speaking of the initiative, Inspector Alistair Seddon said: “While police officers are not doctors, we have to make sure that they can recognise people who might be vulnerable.

“The existing e-learning has won awards for its treatment of mental ill-health, and the college’s review will build on what we currently have. We’re looking at knowledge apps and other new platforms so we can that officers can ensure their understanding in this area remains up-to-date and refreshed.”

Further reading: College of Policing, 'Mental Health Training Vital'

Inspector Michael Brown - who blogs as MentalHealthCop – said: “I would love to see the College of Policing develop a set of training products and resources that reflects the needs of all officers.

“I remain convinced that the United Kingdom needs in-depth training programmes that reflect the complexity and the risks inherent in this work.”

According to Mental Health Foundation figures quoted by the college one in six people struggle with mental health issues at any given time. The college also predicts that the imminent predicted rise in cases of dementia will necessitate ‘strong partnerships with healthcare’.