Consulting Services - Dr Alex West
Practising from Boutique Psychology in Melbourne, Australia, Dr Alex West ME is a subject matter expert in mental health strategy, clinical governance and mental health for first responders.
From bespoke consulting, organisational strategy, leadership coaching and support for government, not-for-profit and private businesses, Dr West has extensive and unique experience, making her a leader in psychology and mental health services.
Not only has this expertise been recognised by her many clients, Dr West has been formally awarded the Public Service Medal (ME) for outstanding public service to Victoria Police, particularly in mental health.
Contributing to significant changes at Victoria Police, including as author of the Victoria Police Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy and Action Plan to improve the delivery of mental health services to Victoria Police employees, Dr West’s work has influenced the public sector in the state of Victoria as well as other jurisdictions in Australia and globally.
Dr Alex West has extensive and unique experience in a number of primary areas, including Risk Management, Crisis Management, Mental Health Management in the Workplace, and Leadership and Performance Coaching.
Boutique Psychology's Clinical Director and Senior Consultant, Dr Alex West, has had an impressive career including 12 years as a Senior Psychologist at Victoria Police and Club Psychologist at Richmond Football Club.
Her experience has awarded her a wide range of experience across clinical, organisational and forensic psychology.
Awarded the Public Service Medal (ME) for outstanding public service to Victoria Police, particularly in mental health, Dr Alex West has contributed to significant changes at Victoria Police, having authored the Victoria Police Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy and Action Plan to improve the delivery of mental health services to Victoria Police employees.
Her work has influenced public sector in not only the state of Victoria, but other jurisdictions in Australia and around the world.
A psychologist, leadership coach, innovator and pioneer in best practice mental health strategy and implementation, Dr Alex West is an award-winning leader in her field.
“In my previous roles, I have had a variety of opportunities to see agencies at their best and their most trying times. The recruitment process to identify the right person for the role, ensuring a strong strategic approach, and understanding their resilience and building on their capacity has been a pillar of my work,” Dr Alex West ME says.
“Managing the wellbeing response to devastating critical incidents including the 2020 bushfires, the Eastern Freeway incident and many other operational incidents have had a long-lasting impact.
“The reflection of these incidents has driven my passion to develop, timely and targeted support, strategy and policy change, leadership support, and front-line support when it matters, as well as understand that the job comes with us even when we go home.
“As I look at what I have achieved and what makes me proud I reflect on the development and implementation of major strategic, organisational and clinical initiatives to drive change in mental health across the organisation.
“My extensive experience includes being the internal clinical lead for the first Victoria Police mental health review (2016), the primary author of the first Victoria Police Mental Health Strategy, overseeing strategies for providing wellbeing responses for large statewide critical incidents, and developing the first therapeutic group program to treat sub-clinical trauma, as well as the skills I have developed in experience of related HR, injury management and OHS as it relates to employee psychological health and wellbeing and risk management”.
Dr Alex West ME is a leader in prevention and early intervention in mental health in high-risk industries like emergency services, police, and first responders.
Having developed and implemented the formal psychological gateway as part of the recruitment process for Victoria Police, Dr West’s robust requirements, standards, processes and psychological testing has stood up to scrutiny by various agencies and tribunals.
She has also developed similar recruitment processes for internal selection into high-risk roles such as police negotiators, Water Police, Search and Rescue, Dog Squad and a range of covert roles.
Dr West’s priorities include planning and implementing organisational change to increase capabilities to include the mental well-being of staff and stakeholders, pre and post-incident through initiatives like workplace Mental Health action plans and suicide prevention initiatives.
Through her extensive experience and specialised interest in crisis management, psychosocial hazards and critical incident management, Dr Alex West can improve the policies and practices within your workplace to mitigate risk and harm.
Having an Employee Assistance Program is only a portion of reacting to a critical incident, and with a particular interest in critical incident management and response, Dr West’s consultation schedule includes victims of crime processes and navigation, suicide postvention and early intervention.
She offers professional development and training through her program: Wellbeing Coaching for Managers: Improve Your Management of Psychosocial Regulations and Occupational Health and Safety Policies, and if a critical incident occurs in your organisation, Dr West can help you develop and implement policies and procedures to manage the psychosocial effects to your staff.
Occupational Work Health and Safety
With recent Work Health and Safety legislation changes prescribing that employers must identify and manage hazards and risks to their workers’ psychological health and safety, Dr Alex West can work with your leadership team to develop policies and procedures to identify and mitigate risks.
Businesses and organisations will often have an operational critical incident plan but sometimes neglect to include a psychosocial plan that can run parallel to operations.
This is where Dr Alex West can work with you and your team to provide consultation and advice to mitigate risk, and help you to provide a safe and healthy workplace for your company.
Mental Health Management in the Workplace
Dr Alex West can work with workplaces to develop selection standards and frameworks for mental health management.
By developing and implementing education and training across a range of mental health and leadership areas, workplaces can create a safe workplace and, by working with Dr West and her groundbreaking innovations in psychology and mental health, become adept in psycho-social and mental health risk management.
Dr Alex West has experience and expertise in creating and implementing psychological testing and recruitment, including high-risk roles, fitness for duty assessments and support, psychological assessment and therapeutic intervention for workplaces.
Psychologist Risk Management
Dr Alex West’s extensive government and agency knowledge has allowed her to develop programs and provide oversight into Psychologist Risk Management (including psycho-social risk) including developing processes, standards and policies in a collaborative manner that work within the existing systems to identify, manage and reduce risk.
Her experience in critical incident management and support; understanding of emergency management and the ability to coordinate and implement large psychological aftercare responses in relation to critical incidents is second to none.
Dr West’s experience includes many years of psychological interventions at individual and group level, which has resulted in her being a sought after subject matter expert in mental health strategy, clinical governance and many areas of mental health in first responders.
Dr West also provides specialty supervision for psychologists who aspire to work in emergency services and frontline services.
Multi-agency projects and incidents
Across Victoria and interstate, as well as globally, Dr Alex West has provided expert consultancy support for clinical governance within organisations, and oversight of their clinical operations.
She has worked within large multi-agency projects and incidents, and sat on departmental human research ethics committees, interdepartmental committees and working groups, including the clinical advisory group for the Beyond Blue: Answering the Call study looking at mental health prevalence across first responders nationally.
This expertise and experience has made Dr Alex West a leader in her field, and she shares this knowledge.
Leadership and coaching programs with Dr Alex West
Dr Alex West is an innovator in her field and offers leadership consulting and coaching programs for people striving to be effective leaders.
She coaches leaders to develop and maintain high-functioning teams, offering two-day intensive workshops and individual sessions for emerging leaders.
Soar to the top of your game with customised coaching to be the best leader possible, which creates the best team and success for your business.
Dr Alex West has extensive experience in leadership and mental health as a psychologist, and has developed a range of leadership programs including coaching programs.
These programs support transition into leadership or moving between levels of management, as well as helping emerging leaders to develop people skills and mental health leadership.
Dr Alex West’s coaching program involves a two day intensive, followed by once monthly group/individual follow up to allow new leaders to develop the skills of management responsibility, as well as develop skills and strategies to manage psycho-social mental health challenges and mitigate mental health risks, in line with organisational/legislative requirements.
Elite Athletes and Sports Clubs
Dr West provides expert advice and has extensive skill and experience in developing and implementing formal mental health strategies at sports clubs and organisations.
One such club that has benefited from these
services, is Australian Football League’s Richmond Football Club.
A first for the Club and for the AFL as an organisation, Dr Alex West was the official Club Psychologist, which allowed her to work within the team in performance psychology, early intervention and leadership.