Evaluation of the Rotorua Mental Health Nurse Initiative
Since 2001 Police have had a mental health nurse working at the Rotorua Police Station to provide assessments and liaison between Police and Mental Health Services to facilitate the treatment of mentally ill detainees/arrestees/remandees. The Police Consult/Liaison Nurse is employed by the Lakes District Health Board (DHB) and comes under the umbrella of their Mental Health Service.
In August 2007, the Police, with the support of the Ministry of Health, commissioned an evaluation of the Rotorua model in order to inform the development of this model in two new pilot sites as part of the Effective Interventions Programme which aims to meet the mental health and AOD needs of offenders to improve their health status and reduce their offending.
This report evaluates the Police Consult/Liaison Nurse role and identifies what is working well and areas for improvement. Key learnings were identified to inform the development of a similar model in other Police watchhouses. The evaluation includes comparative analysis with Tauranga Police Station to see what difference the Police Consult/Liaison Nurse role has had on Police operations and what benefits can be attributed to this role for Police, Mental Health Services and detainees/arrestees.