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Trial registered on ANZCTR

Registration number
Ethics application status
Date submitted
Date registered
Date last updated
Type of registration
Retrospectively registered

Titles & IDs
Public title
Mental Health First Aid for Eating Disorders: evaluation of a training program for the public
Scientific title
Pilot uncontrolled trial of an eating disorder mental health first aid training program to improve mental health literacy, stigmatising attitudes and supportive first aid behaviours among college students.
Secondary ID [1] 273385 0
Universal Trial Number (UTN)
Trial acronym
Linked study record

Health condition
Health condition(s) or problem(s) studied:
Mental health literacy 279160 0
stigmatising attitudes 279161 0
eating disorders 279162 0
supportive first aid behaviours 279165 0
Condition category
Condition code
Mental Health 279349 279349 0 0
Eating disorders
Public Health 279359 279359 0 0
Health promotion/education

Study type
Description of intervention(s) / exposure
The training intervention was a 4-hour single-session, classroom-style, education program designed to be presented to groups of between 5 and 15 people. It included didactic teaching using a Powerpoint presentation, small-group learning activities (in pairs or threes) and whole-group discussion components. A teaching manual was developed to guide facilitation and ensure fidelity. Training was delivered by one primary instructor with a second facilitator assisting with group activities and participant questions. It included information on warning signs and risk factors for the development of an eating disorder, types of eating disorders and current evidence based treatments, how to provide mental health first aid for eating disorders using the MHFA action plan and how to assist in a mental health crisis.
Intervention code [1] 283715 0
Comparator / control treatment
Control group

Primary outcome [1] 285947 0
problem recognition item within the Mental Health Literacy Questionnaire for Bulimic Type eating disorders (Mond etal, 2007)
Timepoint [1] 285947 0
baseline, post-training, six-month follow-up
Secondary outcome [1] 294826 0
Total score on the First Aid Knowledge Test
Timepoint [1] 294826 0
baseline, post-training, six-month follow-up

Key inclusion criteria
Residing at a residential college affiliated with the University of Melbourne in either a student or staff welfare tutor role.
Minimum age
18 Years
Maximum age
No limit
Both males and females
Can healthy volunteers participate?
Key exclusion criteria
Non-attendance at the training intervention session

Study design
Purpose of the study
Educational / counselling / training
Allocation to intervention
Non-randomised trial
Procedure for enrolling a subject and allocating the treatment (allocation concealment procedures)
Recruitment advertisements were posted as flyers on noticeboards around residences, presented orally at dinner meetings, or written in weekly news emails. The advertisements included information about eating disorders and MHFA training. Student and staff training sessions were run separately. As this was a non-randomised uncontrolled trial, there were no allocation procedures.
Methods used to generate the sequence in which subjects will be randomised (sequence generation)
Masking / blinding
Open (masking not used)
Who is / are masked / blinded?

Intervention assignment
Single group
Other design features
Not Applicable
Type of endpoint(s)
Statistical methods / analysis

Recruitment status
Date of first participant enrolment
Date of last participant enrolment
Date of last data collection
Sample size
Accrual to date
Recruitment in Australia
Recruitment state(s)

Funding & Sponsors
Funding source category [1] 284198 0
Name [1] 284198 0
Australian Rotary Health
Address [1] 284198 0
PO Box 3455
Parramatta, NSW 2124
Country [1] 284198 0
Primary sponsor type
University Of Melbourne
Centre for Youth Mental Health
University of Melbourne
Locked bag 10
Parkville VIC 3052
Secondary sponsor category [1] 269159 0
Name [1] 269159 0
Professor Anthony Jorm
Address [1] 269159 0
Primary Supervisor
Centre for Youth Mental Health
University of Melbourne
Locked bag 10
Parkville VIC 3052
Country [1] 269159 0
Other collaborator category [1] 260344 0
Name [1] 260344 0
Laura Hart
Address [1] 260344 0
PhD Student
Centre for Youth Mental Health
University of Melbourne
Locked bag 10
Parkville VIC 3052
Country [1] 260344 0
Other collaborator category [2] 260345 0
Name [2] 260345 0
Professor Susan Paxton
Address [2] 260345 0
Secondary Supervisor
School of Psychological Science
La Trobe University
Bundoora VIC 3083
Country [2] 260345 0

Ethics approval
Ethics application status
Ethics committee name [1] 286164 0
University of Melbourne, Department of Psychiatry, Human Ethics Adivory Group
Ethics committee address [1] 286164 0
Melbourne Research Office
Level 5, Alan Gilbert Building
161 Barry Street (corner of Grattan Street)
Carlton VIC 3053
Ethics committee country [1] 286164 0
Date submitted for ethics approval [1] 286164 0
Approval date [1] 286164 0
Ethics approval number [1] 286164 0

Brief summary
Mental Health First Aid
Mental Health First Aid is defined as the help provided to someone who is developing a mental illness or experiencing a mental health crisis. The assistance is given until appropriate professional help is received or the crisis resolves. Mental Health First Aid training is provided to members of the public so that they can learn how to effectively and confidently assist those with mental health problems. The Mental Health First Aid Training Program (MHFA) has been running since 2002 and has trained over 85,000 Australians in how to respond to mental health problems, via a 12-hour training course, which is run in an interactive, group format.

Development of First Aid Guidelines
Over the last 3.5 years a series of guidelines for providing best practice mental health first aid have been developed by MHFA. These guidelines are based on the expert opinions of panels of mental health consumers, carers and clinicians from Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, the UK and the USA. Since developing these expert consensus documents, the MHFA program has begun to revise its training course and teaching materials to reflect the new evidence they provide.

Purpose of this research
Guidelines on providing first aid for eating disorders were developed in 2007 and published in 2008. Because these guidelines are the first ever to provide consensus-based information about how to assist someone who may be developing or experiencing an eating disorder, we would like to gather some feedback from community members about how helpful they are.
Trial website
Trial related presentations / publications
Orygen Youth Health Research Centre/Centre for Youth Mental Health Research Meeting. Friday 4th March 2010
"Mental Health First Aid for Eating Disorders: development of first aid guidelines and an intervention for the public"
Public notes

Principal investigator
Name 33379 0
Address 33379 0
Country 33379 0
Phone 33379 0
Fax 33379 0
Email 33379 0
Contact person for public queries
Name 16626 0
Laura Hart
Address 16626 0
Centre for Youth Mental Health
University of Melbourne
Locked Bag 10
Parkville Vic 3052
Country 16626 0
Phone 16626 0
Fax 16626 0
Email 16626 0
Contact person for scientific queries
Name 7554 0
Laura Hart
Address 7554 0
Centre for Youth Mental Health
University of Melbourne
Locked Bag 10
Parkville Vic 3052
Country 7554 0
Phone 7554 0
Fax 7554 0
Email 7554 0

No information has been provided regarding IPD availability
Summary results
Have study results been published in a peer-reviewed journal?
Other publications
Have study results been made publicly available in another format?
Results – basic reporting
Results – plain English summary