Staff profile - Natisha Sands

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Aprof Natisha Sands

Position: Assoc. Professor Nursing/Midwifery
Faculty or Division: Faculty of Health
Department: School of Nursing and Midwifery
Campus: Geelong Waterfront Campus
Phone: +61 3 52278417 +61 3 52278417
Email: natisha.sands@deakin.edu.au

Biography

Biography

Natisha Sands has been a mental health nurse since 1986, and completed her training at the Eastern and Metropolitan School of Nursing, Royal Park Hospital, Melbourne. Natisha worked in a wide variety of clinical roles before completing a PhD in 2003 that involved a state-wide investigation of mental health triage nursing in Victoria. Since completing her doctoral studies Natisha has been committed to acting on the recommendations of her study, in particular developing curricular to expand the mental health triage theoretical knowledge base, developing evidence-based frameworks for practice, and clinical education programs to support clinicians in improving the quality and consistency of mental health triage.  Natisha's research program investigates mental health triage clinical practice, triage service delivery, mental health in the emergency department, competency assessment, consumer perspectives, and risk assessment.


Biography summary

Natisha Sands RPN BN (Hons) PhD.  Natisha's research program investigates mental health triage clinical practice, triage service delivery, mental health in the emergency department, competency assessment, consumer perspectives, and risk assessment.


Qualifications

  • Doctor of Philosophy, University of Ballarat, 2003
  • Bachelor of Nursing, Deakin University, 1995


Affiliations

Principal Research Fellow, Center for Psychiatric Nursing, University of Melbourne 


Professional activities

MENTAL HEALTH TRIAGE EDUCATION PROGRAM

The Mental Health Triage Education Program  is a cross disciplinary clinical education program that provides an evidenced-based framework for conducting mental health triage assessment.

Since 2007 the program has been delivered to more than 1500 clinicians across Australia, including  Victoria, Tasmania, South Australia, Western Australia, Northern Territory, and New South Wales. 

In 2008 the program won the University of Melbourne Vice Chancellor's Knowledge Transfer Excellence Award, High Commendation. 

JOURNALS 

  • Editorial Board, Nursing and Health Sciences  
  • Reviewer, Perspectives in Psychiatric Care
  • Reviewer, Australasian Emergency Nurses Journal
  • Reviewer, International Journal of Mental Health Nursing
  • Reviewer, Archives of Psychiatric Nursing  

CURRICULUM DEVELOPMENT

• Postgraduate Diploma in Nursing Practice, Mental Health. University of Melbourne. 2007. Curriculum accreditation Nurses Board Victoria.

• Mental Health Triage and Intake Practice, University of Melbourne, Post Graduate Diploma in Advanced Clinical Nursing subject 2006

• Mental Health Triage Education Program. University of Melbourne 2006.

• Mental Health Triage Clinical Education Program (2005). The Alfred Hospital

• Complex Therapies: Managing Dementia in Home and Community Settings (2003). Post Graduate Diploma in Nursing. Distance Education Program, Royal District Nursing and Latrobe University

• Advanced Communication in Home Based Care (2003). Post Graduate Diploma in Nursing. Royal District Nursing and Latrobe University

• Legalities and ethics of healthcare practice for vocational trainees (1998). Modules 1 -5. Care Skills Australia

• Healthcare industry policy for vocational trainees (1999). Modules 1 -5. Care Skills Australia

Academic

Teaching Interests

Mental Health, emergency mental health, mental health triage


Subjects and units currently teaching

HNN222 Mental Health Nursing 

HNN301 Mental Health Promotion 

HNN709 Mental Health Triage 


Knowledge areas

  • Mental Health Nursing 
  • Mental Health Triage 
  • Emergency Department mental health
  • Risk assessment 
  • Emergency mental health care
  • Violence in healthcare settings
  • Mental health promotion
  • Handover in psychiatric settings


Student supervision

Elijah Marangu. PhD. Mental health care in Kenya: investigating strategies
for capacity building in primary health care settings. (current)
                       
Renee Fiolet.  PhD. Intimate Partner Violence.(current) 

Emily Williams. Nursing Honours. Mental health consumer perceptions  
of quality of life and mental health care.

Amanda Waters. Nursing Honours. An investigation of information transfer  (handover) between the Crisis Assessment and Treatment Team and the
Acute Psychiatric Unit

Luka Campbell. Nursing Honours. Relationships between antenatal mental
health, infant health outcomes, and health service utilisation in a population
derived cohort
                  
Jen Hoskings.  Master of Advanced Nursing Practice. Recognising clinical
deterioration in Emergency Department patients. Co-Supervisor

Freyja Millar. Master of Advanced Nursing Practice. Cardio metabolic
monitoring practices in an Adult Community Mental Health Service

Fiona Kumar. Nursing Honours. The categorisation of risk in duty/triage.
                                      
Catherine O'Halloran. Masters Minor Thesis. The categorization of
urgency by adult psychiatric triage clinicians undertaking telephone
psychiatric triage for a child and adolescent mental health service.

Koehne, Kirsty. PhD. The tendency to withhold a diagnosis of borderline
personality disorder during adolescence and the subsequent impact on the
care of adolescents.
                
Rebecca Millar. Master of Advanced Nursing Practice. Communication of risk information at nursing handovers in an acute mental health inpatient setting

Gibbs, E.  Master of Advanced Nursing Practice.  An evaluation of mental health triage from the carer’s  perspective

Needham, H.  Master of Advanced Nursing Practice. Investigating Post-Seclusion
Debriefing as a Nursing Intervention
                     
Purves, D. Master of Advanced Nursing Practice. Crisis and Triage Clinicians Attitudes Toward  Individuals with a Diagnosis of Personality Disorder


Media appearances

Sydney Morning Herald 2006 'Nursing ambition to help others' story by Marcella Bidinost, December 2, 2006

http://www.smh.com.au/news/nursing/nursing-ambition-to-help-others/2006/12/01/1164777779586.html 

Awards

Awards and prizes

• KB Smith Nursing Publication Award, The Alfred Hospital 2012

• Vice Chancellors Knowledge Transfer Excellence Award 2009, High Commendation, University of Melbourne

• Ballarat Health Awards 2003 (excellence in research)

• University of Ballarat Publication Award 2002

• Stan Alchin Presenters Award. Australian and New Zealand College of Mental Health Nurses 27th Annual International Conference, Melbourne, 2001

• Australian Post Graduate Award 1999


Research

Research projects

GRANTS

Sands, N & Elsom, S. (2012). An interactive computer program for assessing competency in telephone-based mental health triage: A Pilot Study. Telematics Trust Grant $28,500    

Sands, N, Forbes, H. Brown, R. & Mielnik, L. (2012). The Mental Health and Wellbeing Portal. HEPPP Deakin Grant.  $ 29,744.24

Sands, N. Gerdtz, M, Hosking, J. & Berk, M. (2010). Validating the clinical descriptors of the Australasian Triage Scale, mental health triage sub-scale. Clinical Care and Quality Risk Management Centre, Deakin University. $20,000

Sands, N., Gerdtz, M., & Elsom, S. (2007). Developing Clinical Guidelines for violence risk assessment in mental health triage. Mona Menzies Post Doctoral Grant. Nurses Board of Victoria. $50,000.

Maude, P., Doherty, P., Kalkarni, J., Sands, N & Gerdtz, M.  (2006). Development of a quality outcome measurement network in the South East Region of Victoria. QUATRO Quality Through Outcomes Network. Commonwealth Dept of Health and Aging  $385,000.

Maude, P., Kroshel, J., Gerdtz, M., Manias, E & Sands, N. (2005). Consumer understanding of triage and high dependency care at the Alfred. SIIP Mark 3 $20,000


CONULTANCIES AND FUNDED PROJECTS

Sands, N & Elsom, SJ. (2010) Consultation to Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board, Wales NHS UK on the design and implementation of Mental Health Triage Services.

Sands, N & Elsom, SJ. (2010/2012). Identifying the core competencies of mental health triage: An observational study. The Alfred Hospital.

Sands, N. Gerdtz, M. & Elsom, S. (2009). Evaluation of Latrobe Regional Hospital Mental health Triage Service. Latrobe Regional health service.

Sands, N., Gerdtz, M., (2008). Evaluation of the Department of Human Services Victoria Draft Area Mental Health Triage Scale. Department of Human Services Victoria

Sands, N (2007) Consultation to National Health Call Centre on the development of competencies for call-centre mental health triage. Commonwealth Department of Health and Ageing.

Gerdtz, M., Considine, J., Sands, N., Crellin, D. & Stewart, C. (2006).  Emergency Department Triage Education Kit.. Commonwealth Department of Health and Aging.


Research interests

Natisha has led a focused program of research in Mental Health Triage and emergency mental health care since 2003. Areas of research include:

  • mental health triage practice
  • models for mental triage service delivery
  • mental health in the emergency department
  • risk assessment
  • mental health triage competency assessment 
  • tele mental health triage 
  • emergency mental health care 
  • Handover in psychiatric settings 
  • decision-making 


Research grants

GRANTS

Sands, N & Elsom, S. (2012). An interactive computer program for assessing competency in telephone-based mental health triage: A Pilot Study. Telematics Trust Grant $28,500    

Sands, N, Forbes, H. Brown, R. & Mielnik, L. (2012). The Mental Health and Wellbeing Portal. HEPPP Deakin Grant.  $ 29,744.24

Sands, N. Gerdtz, M, Hosking, J. & Berk, M. (2010). Validating the clinical descriptors of the Australasian Triage Scale, mental health triage sub-scale. Clinical Care and Quality Risk Management Centre, Deakin University. $20,000

Sands, N., Gerdtz, M., & Elsom, S. (2007). Developing Clinical Guidelines for violence risk assessment in mental health triage. Mona Menzies Post Doctoral Grant. Nurses Board of Victoria. $50,000.

Maude, P., Doherty, P., Kalkarni, J., Sands, N & Gerdtz, M.  (2006). Development of a quality outcome measurement network in the South East Region of Victoria. QUATRO Quality Through Outcomes Network. Commonwealth Dept of Health and Aging  $385,000.

Maude, P., Kroshel, J., Gerdtz, M., Manias, E & Sands, N. (2005). Consumer understanding of triage and high dependency care at the Alfred. SIIP Mark 3 $20,000


CONULTANCIES AND FUNDED PROJECTS

Sands, N & Elsom, SJ. (2010) Consultation to Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board, Wales NHS UK on the design and implementation of Mental Health Triage Services.

Sands, N & Elsom, SJ. (2010/2012). Identifying the core competencies of mental health triage: An observational study. The Alfred Hospital.

Sands, N. Gerdtz, M. & Elsom, S. (2009). Evaluation of Latrobe Regional Hospital Mental health Triage Service. Latrobe Regional health service.

Sands, N., Gerdtz, M., (2008). Evaluation of the Department of Human Services Victoria Draft Area Mental Health Triage Scale. Department of Human Services Victoria

Sands, N (2007) Consultation to National Health Call Centre on the development of competencies for call-centre mental health triage. Commonwealth Department of Health and Ageing.

Gerdtz, M., Considine, J., Sands, N., Crellin, D. & Stewart, C. (2006).  Emergency Department Triage Education Kit.. Commonwealth Department of Health and Aging.

Sands, N (2004) Consultation to Health and Community Services Union on educational/training needs of mental health triage nursing workforce. Health and Community Services Union.

Sands, N (2004) Consultation to Health and Community Services Union on the proposed introduction of tele-triage call centres in Victorian mental health services. Health and Community Services Union.


Research page

http://www.deakin.edu.au/research/admin/pubs/reports/database/dynamic/output/person/person.php?person_code=sandsna


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