Mental Health Resiliency in Long Term Care – Evaluation

The Nova Scotia Centre on Aging is partnering with Nursing Homes of Nova Scotia Association on a mental health support program being offered to 50 long term care facilities across Nova Scotia. The project is funded by Healthcare Excellence Canada starting in January 2022 and going through to  March 2023. The Association has engaged Pamela MacLean and Serena Lewis from Dallas Mercer Consulting who will be delivering the program. Our Centre’s role is to evaluate the program.

Why evaluate a mental health initiative in long-term care?

It is important to understand if this program has made a difference to staff and organizations within long term care in Nova Scotia and what should be considered when offering a mental health program within the long-term care setting.

This information gathered through the evaluation will be used to inform future programs and contribute to knowledge about best practices for addressing the mental health needs of staff in long term care.

The program has three different components. The evaluation work is tailored to each component. The first offering of the program took place between January and April 2022, with an evaluation component completed. Evaluation results were shared at the Association’s annual general meeting in June. With remaining funding the second offering of the program is being delivered from October 2022 to January 2023. The program includes the three different components but with some variation of activities. An evaluation of the second offering will be completed.

Evaluation component

Serena Lewis and Pam MacLean, Dallas Mercer Consulting will be offering five education sessions (virtually) to long-term care staff who choose to participate. Topics will focus on enhancing your self-care. They will present on a new topic each session and provide a space for discussion. These sessions will be two hours in length, with the option to access the recorded presentation after the session.

What will you be asking me?

We want to understand whether the education sessions had an impact on your mental health and whether the content and delivery was appropriate for the long-term care setting. We will be asking:

Self-rated mental health questions on topics such as stress, resiliency, and factors (such as personal or work) contributing to your well-being

What you expect from these sessions in terms of content learned and skills acquired

Your ease of being able to attend these sessions and the format in which this program was delivered

How much of my time will this take?

The survey is scheduled to be completed at three points in time:

  1. Before you attend your first session
  2. Immediately after you attend the final session
  3. Six weeks after the final session

Each survey should take around 10 to 15 minutes.

A link to the online survey will be sent to you via email.

For each survey you complete you will have the opportunity to enter your name in a draw for one of five $50 gift cards. You will be prompted at the end of the survey and your personal information will not be linked to the survey.

In addition to the surveys, at the end of one of the sessions we will join the group and have a discussion with the participants in that session. If you are participating in that session, you will have the option to stay and contribute to the evaluation discussion. There will opportunity to offer your perspective either through audio, polling or the Chat feature.


Practitioners from Dallas Mercer Consulting will engage with interested long term care homes to provide support for addressing mental health needs of staff at the organizational level. This will be done through education session(s) in the fall of 2022 aimed at building leadership skills, followed by a meeting with your team members to identify site-based resources and opportunities.

Evaluation component

What will you be asking me?

We are interested in hearing feedback from those who were involved in this component and want to understand:

Your organization’s experience with this consulting approach

Whether the information and suggestions provided were useful to your organization

The enablers and barriers your organization encountered to making changes

Your organization’s progress with implementing the suggestions and further resources needed

How much of my time will this take?

We will individually interview 2-3 staff members from your organization. We will do these interviews at two points in time:

Interview 1 – shortly after the consultation is completed – 20 to 30 minutes

Interview 2 – 4 to 6 weeks after your first interview with us – 15 to 20 minutes

We will be including 4-5 care homes in this component. If you are selected for an interview, we will be in contact to set up a convenient time for you to complete the interview. Interviews will be through telephone or videoconference.

Please note: Other care homes who were part of our evaluation work of the consultation services in winter/spring of 2022 may also be contacted as a follow up to understand their progress with action plans.


Note: Evaluation activities for second offering will be updated shortly.

Long-term care staff across the province will be able to participate in a virtual support group of five sessions which will be held bi-weekly. These sessions are intended to build a dynamic, growing, evolving community of practice in the long-term care sector that is peer led and is built from the inside out and from the ground up.

Evaluation component

What will we be asking?

At the end of the 3rd, 4th, and 5th session, we will join the session for a discussion about:

Your experience with how these discussions are being delivered

Your thoughts on what it will take for the community of practice to continue on a longer term basis

There will be an opportunity to offer your perspective either through audio, polling or the Chat feature.

How much of my time will this take?

Time for feedback will be built in to the community of practice sessions. It will be the final 10 minutes of each session.

We will review what is involved in the evaluation prior to starting and it will be your choice if you wish to stay and contribute.

How can you get involved?

If you are interested learning more about the evaluation and how you can provide input, please contact the Nova Scotia Centre on Aging:

Email: or Telephone: 902-457-6235