Getting it right! Enhancing youth involvement in mental health research

Lauren Mawn, Patrick Welsh, Lauren Kirkpatrick, Lisa A D Webster, Helen J. Stain

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    Abstract

    Background: Few studies relating to youth mental health have actively involved young people in the design and conduct of research. Aims: This qualitative study explores the perceptions of young people about involving them in mental health research. Method: An opportunistic sample of eight young people (aged 14–24 years) from non-statutory mental health organizations was interviewed. Interviews were transcribed verbatim, and inductive thematic analysis was conducted. Results: Six key themes emerged reflecting a desire for young people to have the opportunity to actively contribute to every stage of the research process. Meaningful research involvement was perceived as offering opportunities to develop personal skills, contribute to making a difference and ensuring research projects were more relevant. Conclusions: Young people with an active interest in mental health promotion demonstrate a desire to be involved in research with training in research methods likely to facilitate this process. Researchers need training on how best to actively and meaningfully involve young people in mental health research.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)908-919
    Number of pages12
    JournalHealth Expectations
    Volume19
    Issue number4
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2016

    Keywords

    • Adolescent
    • Involvement in research
    • Patient and Public Involvement
    • Youth

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