Brief Solution-Focused Counseling: A Practical Effective Strategy for Dealing with Wait Lists in Community-Based Mental Health Services (Report)

Community-based mental health services are funded by the provincial government in most Canadian provinces and, in Saskatchewan, are provided through local health regions as a part of the public health care system. Resource allocation in public mental health has not matched the demand for service, resulting in waiting lists, a problem faced by many social workers working in publicly funded mental health services. In this article, we describe our efforts to apply evidence-based practice strategies to our clinical setting. A strengths-based brief solution-focused counseling (BSFC) model was used to increase the number of clients served. The program was evaluated to ensure that clients continued to benefit from the counseling being offered, despite the reduction in number of sessions being offered. We discuss the challenges faced by social workers who introduce evaluation tools in a clinical setting. We believe this article can serve as a model for social workers who plan to explore clinical challenges and then evaluate their interventions. LITERATURE REVIEW

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