COMMUNITY OF PRACTICE AND MENTAL HEALTH CARE: A SYSTEMATIC REVISION

Abstract Mental health care is dependent on qualified human resources to respond dynamically to the service users’ needs. This qualification by reflection on the work processes is essential for effective change to a community and biopsychosocial perspective. The Community of Practice is a theoretical framework that fosters collaborative learning through mutual engagement in common projects and negotiation of meanings. The research had as objective to systematize the use of Community of Practice for improving mental health care, by systematic review at Capes Portal and Virtual Health Library in March 2015. We found nineteen articles and nine of them were selected for analysis. The studies evaluated the Community of Practice as positive to improve the services offered to the population, provide training from experts, and implement new methods of work. They highlight weaknesses (financial resources, initial misalignment between the participants, group conflicts) and potentialities (real engagement of participants, virtual participation, access to specialists, integration of professionals, users and families in a single project; training needs in context). We expected to clarify possibilities for training and investigative strategies for continuing education in mental health.