Let’s get real

The right knowledge, skills, values and attitudes to effectively support people using services.

Let’s get real is a framework of knowledge, skills, values and attitudes for working with people and whānau with mental health and addiction needs. 

Developed in 2008 by the Ministry of Health Let’s get real was first designed for people working in mental health and addiction services. In 2017 Te Pou o te Whakaaro Nui led a refresh of Let’s get real on behalf of the Ministry of Health.  Following sector consultation the framework has been refreshed and published in 2018.  It now has a broader focus for everyone in health working with people and whānau with mental health and addiction needs. 

Let’s get real has three components – values, attitudes and the seven Real Skills.

The intent of Let’s get real is to: 
•    have shared values and attitudes when working with people and whānau with mental health and addiction needs
•    develop the knowledge and skills of the workforce described in the seven Real Skills.

To understand what has changed in the refreshed Let’s get real – have a look at refreshed Let’s get real – what’s new.  

Values and attitudes

The values and attitudes underpin the framework.  They are intended to express the shared approach which applies across healthcare regardless of role, profession and organisation and will complement organisation-specific values.

The values are: respect, manaaki, hope, partnership, wellbeing and whanaungatanga.

The attitudes are grouped into five themes: compassionate, genuine, honest, open-minded and optimistic.

Working in a values informed way means workers are more likely to effectively respond to and work in partnership with people accessing services. 

The seven Real Skills

There are seven Real Skills for working with people and whānau with mental health and addiction needs in health:

  1. Working with people experiencing mental health and addiction needs
  2. Working with Māori
  3. Working with whānau
  4. Working within communities
  5. Challenging discrimination
  6. Applying law, policy and practice
  7. Maintaining professional and personal development

Each skill has three levels:

  • Essential – for everyone working in health regardless of role, profession or organisation. 
  • Enhanced – for everyone working in mental health and addiction roles.
  • Leadership – for everyone who is leading, guiding, educating and resourcing the work of others in health.