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Table 1 Education and training for promoting informal and formal peer support

From: Supporting medical students to support peers: a qualitative interview study

For all students, to promote informal peer support encounters
 • Information about mental health symptoms, guidance on when, how and who to refer to, specific to context
 • Scripts and practice in expressing concern and broaching mental health topics
 • What to do in emergencies, red flags
 • Self-disclosure by peers, near-peers and role models emphasizing strengths-based management and careers advice
 • Accurate information about professional obligations and codes of conduct
 • Exploration of the value of peer relationships as emergent professional collegiality
For selected students in formal peer support programs
In addition to above
 • Explicit selection criteria e.g. previous experience and training, accessibility and ability to contribute, absence of vulnerability, academic performance not at risk
 • Role boundaries; when support should be paused, when to seek case advice, refer, how and to whom, specific to context
 • Enhanced training in mental health responses and reaching socially isolated students
 • Academic and/or clinical advice on demand 24/7
 • Program design includes succession planning