University of Tasmania

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CARE: A framework for mental health practice

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-18, 01:28 authored by McAllister, M, Kenneth Walsh
Much has been written about care and its centrality to nursing practice. Yet nursing theories and frameworks surrounding care have either been esoteric or prescriptive and are seen as irrelevant to practice. This paper problematizes the notion of care with a view to developing a clearer, flexible framework for mental health practice. The framework is the product of the authors' shared and individual experiences and theorizing as nurses and educators and has not yet been evaluated. The CARE framework (containment, awareness, resilience and engagement) is detailed, with examples of its use in practice. Using the framework offers a way for clinicians and caters to work more strategically with clients, helping them manage and understand their condition or disability, offering support to adapt and cope, and revealing and developing new or hidden strengths to help them endure the experience and find meaning for the recovery process. Taking up the framework within the everyday practice of mental healthcare offers several benefits for clients, clinicians and mental health.


Publication title

Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing








School of Nursing


Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Place of publication

United Kingdom

Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Mental health services