More than 50% of our funding is dedicated to mental health programs that promote early intervention to reduce the impact and escalation of mental illness.
- Increasing access to local, low cost mental health services in areas with limited service availability but high demand.
- Building capacity within general practice to recognise and support patients with mental health conditions and ensure GPs are aware of clinical pathways and referral processes.
- Increasing access to early intervention services to prevent escalating acuity and reduce the burden on acute and emergency departments.
- Leading the implementation of the Alliance Against Depression (AAD), a key strategic approach to achieving the vision of health equity in WA.
- Finding the best approaches to suicide prevention for at-risk populations.
Practitioner Online Referral Treatment Service (PORTS): A service providing telephone and online treatments by registered mental health professionals to people experiencing financial and/or locational disadvantage. It plays a central role in ensuring equity for those in need of, and unable to, access face-to-face mental health services, with GPs having the option of referring directly to the service.
Joint Regional Mental Health Plans: A initiative of the Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Plan to promote collaborative and integrated planning and commissioning of mental health services to ensure those needing care can access the right services at the right time, in the right place by the right team. Their development requires collaboration between PHNs, Health Service Providers and the WA Mental Health Commission, and has been incorporated within the Sustainable Health Review.
Suicide Prevention Trials: As part of the national Australian Government Suicide Prevention Trial, we oversee threeTrials in Perth South, the Midwest and the Kimberley. Each site was selected due to its higher than average suicide rate. The Trials aim to find the most effective approaches to suicide prevention for at-risk populations and to share this knowledge across Australia.
Alliance Against Depression: The strong link between depression and suicide requires a focus on improving access to primary mental healthcare for all people. Based on evaluated trials, the AAD is an internationally accepted practice for the care of people with depression and in the reduction of suicidal acts. It has informed the activities within the Perth South and Midwest Suicide Prevention Trial Sites.
Key Achievements - Mental Health
- Increased the total number of clients, service contacts and episodes of care provided from 6404 to 10, 716; 6532 to 11,441 and 50,268 to 93,479, respectively.
- Improved the mental health of most people engaging with our funded services, with between 57 to 74% of clients reporting significant improvement.
- Developed a Memorandum of Understanding with the WA Mental Health Commission (MHC) to help influence system-wide improvements across mental health suicide prevention, and alcohol and other drug services.
- Formed a project control group with the MHC and Department of Health WA to provide oversight and guidance during the development of WA’s Joint Regional Mental Health Plans.
- Partnered with the MHC to co-fund the Active Life Enhancing Intervention (ALIVE) program that facilitates better linkages between service providers for people being triaged from metropolitan hospitals following a suicide attempt.
The Inside My Mind campaign was seen half a million times.
Key Achievements - Suicide Prevention Trials
- Formed national partnerships to deliver activities for at-risk communities, including training and resource development for GPs with the Orygen National Centre for Excellence in Youth Mental Health, Lived Experience workshops with Roses in the Ocean and Workforce Development Training with the National LGBTI Alliance.
- Designed and deployed the Inside My Mind campaign, which was seen more than five million times, featuring people with lived experience who encourage others to recognise and seek help for depression and anxiety.
- Improved help seeking behaviours among 53% of vulnerable young people surveyed in Perth South.
- Approved eight Community Action Plans and employed seven Community Liaison Officers across the Kimberley.
- Supported the Kimberley Empowered Young Leaders Project to run two youth forums.
- Created better outcomes for the communities involved in the Kimberley Trial, despite the challenge of balancing time constraints to ensure local people felt heard and respected regarding their local and cultural knowledge.
- Travelled 15,285 kilometres, the equivalent of crossing Australia three times, across the Midwest, to combat the challenge of reaching men who are isolated and working in rural locations,spread across the Midwest.
- Coordinated 51 training activities for 1,368 GPs and community members in the Midwest to build community capacity and, ultimately, a sustainable suicide prevention plan.
Key Achievements - Alliance Against Depression
- Launched the Kwinana Alliance Against Depression, WA’s first grassroots local Alliance.
- Completed a full suite of localised resources to support local Alliances which have been shared globally by the European AAD.
- Designed and launched an GP Training video that delivers a contemporary perspective on how to effectively identify and manage depressed patients in primary care. The resource is being used at the Rural Clinical School of WA and has been shared throughout the European AAD global network.
- Worked with the Perth South Suicide Prevention Trial team to support the Shires of Murray and Waroona to deliver AAD projects focusing on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth.
We have started to roll out The Alliance Against Depression model in Western Australia.