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GENA710 Mental Health and Illness in Primary Care

Recognition, assessment and management of common mental health disorders in primary care.

The aim of GENA 710 is to give community-based health professionals a sound foundation for the recognition and management of mental health issues that commonly present in primary health care settings. The paper considers assessment, care planning and care delivery for patients with mental health issues. It also reviews current mental health status data and policy directions for primary-care-based service delivery and workforce development.

Paper title Mental Health and Illness in Primary Care
Paper code GENA710
Subject General Practice
EFTS 0.25
Points 30 points
Teaching period Not offered in 2023 (Distance learning)
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $3,018.75
International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.

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GENX 710
Limited to
PGCertGP, MHealSc, PGCertPHC, PGDipGP, PGDipHealSc, PGDipPHC
(i) Includes residential period/s. (ii) Students must hold a recognised qualification as a health professional and be currently employed in a primary health care setting.

Suitable for health professionals from a range of disciplines.

Teaching staff

Convenor: To be confirmed

Paper Structure

Elective paper for the Postgraduate Diploma in Primary Health Care (PGDipPHC).

The paper has five modules covering:

  • Promoting mental health and well-being
  • Assessing for well-being
  • Supporting well-being
  • Supporting the life journey
  • Complexity in care
Teaching Arrangements

One compulsory workshop period. Other teaching done via Blackboard and online videoconferencing.

Study Skills, resources and technology support is provided to students free of charge via a specifically developed site that is accessed through Blackboard.


All resources available either via Blackboard or other online resources.

Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Interdisciplinary perspective, Communication, Critical thinking, Information literacy, Self-motivation.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.

Please also refer to the Department of Primary Health Care & General Practice Graduate Profile.
Learning Outcomes
Upon successfully completing the paper students will be able to
  • List and apply the principles of promoting mental health and well-being (personal and public health concerns)
  • Describe the nature of mental health and well-being, assessment/screening for illness, and classification mental illness
  • Describe the management framework for mental illness, treatment modalities, models of care and workforce development
  • Identify the different phases of the life journey and their particular association with mental health and illness
  • List and elaborate the range complexity factors influencing mental illness including comorbidity and suicidality

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Not offered in 2023

Teaching method
This paper is taught through Distance Learning
Learning management system