Mental Health Survey Questions – Why they are needed and best practices collecting feedback

Feedback surveys are an easy way to get direct and anonymous feedback from customers, but did you know they can also help collect anonymous mental health data? Collecting such data plays a crucial role in the effectiveness of programs at schools and mental health care settings. 

So how can your organization improve productivity and effectiveness with anonymous mental health feedback survey? This article explains the importance of feedback, when and how you can obtain it, best practices, and examples for mental health survey questions.

Why do you need mental health feedback?

Whether you work in a school setting, residential program, or private practice, you share one goal in common: to help the adults and kids you serve. For your services to most effective, your clientele needs to be involved. Feedback can be used to:

Collect data.

Feedback and surveys can be used to learn valuable information that otherwise wouldn’t be accessible, such as the history of the community you serve or specific issues you weren’t aware of before. Additionally,  It can tell you when staff members are treating people in ways that make them feel uncomfortable, angry, or otherwise disrespected.

Improve care and support.

Soliciting patient feedback is one of the best ways to identify gaps in care and tell you whether your methods are working. By asking them about specific aspects of theirs experience. In this way, you can get a better understanding of the quality of care being received versus what you perceive you’re providing.

To encourage steady engagement.

When people feel they’re being listened to and their opinion matters, it can help improve patient engagement, critical in improving retention and outcomes.

Respond accordingly to changes.

There may be social or cultural differences within the population you’re working with or other circumstances that influence your program or service.  Being able to spot and respond accordingly to these with feedback can keep your program valuable and practical.

Best practices when asking mental health survey questions

When drafting a feedback survey, it’s essential to ask the right questions.  Regarding mental health, questions are most effective when they are short, concise, and relevant.

Depending on your goals for obtaining feedback and the setting you’re in, the questions asked could differ. However, it is always best to be trauma-informed in your questioning. In other words, have a compassionate, empathetic approach towards any population while assuming a trauma history.

When might you utilize satisfaction surveys?

Feedback is commonly gathered at the end of a program or service. However, there are various stages in which you could benefit from collecting data:

During the development stages:

Having members of the population you’re aiming to help and engage with the planning process will improve your chances of a successful outcome.

Throughout the running of a program:

Continuing to obtain feedback from participants throughout the program allows you to make adjustments as needed.

Examples of mental health survey questions:

  • Do you feel you have access to mental health resources?
  • Are you aware of the services available to you?
  • If someone you knew talked about their mental health issues with you, how would you respond?
  • Overall, how would you rate your mental health?
  • Have you ever been diagnosed with a mental health condition?
  • Is there anything that makes talking about mental health uncomfortable?
  • Is there anything we can do to make you feel safer here?

How can you obtain feedback?

Obtaining honest feedback is more natural when participants have felt that they play a valuable role.  Suppose they’ve been invited to participate in planning and to implement their service or education or treatment. In that case, they’ll be far more comfortable providing honest and helpful feedback on the process, content, and results in it. 

A few things can influence feedback:

  • A person’s objective perspective- based on facts, observation, and past knowledge.
  • Or a subjective one- based on emotional reactions, defensiveness, loyalty (to family, friends, or class), cultural gaps, or distrust of outsiders.
  • Limited knowledge of an issue or process, lack of information, or understanding of the information available.

Feedback can be given in several ways, and it’s essential to pay attention to which ones work best for your particular setting and environment.

Mental Health Survey Questions