People living in West Australia can now access a new telephone and online service providing tailored mental health support to people living with complex mental health and trauma.
Developed and delivered by national mental health organisation SANE, this new service involves professional phone and online counselling and one-on-one contact with a peer support worker, as well as access to community forums and a range of therapeutic activities designed to support recovery and help participants learn the skills to better manage their mental health.
Complex mental health includes people with multiple mental health conditions to manage, PTSD and trauma, long term mental illness and lower prevalence, higher complexity conditions such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or OCD. The service is also built for autistic people and those with intellectual disability seeking mental health support.
SANE CEO, Rachel Green, says the service addresses a critical care gap for this community by providing free and easily accessible support with minimal waiting time.
“This service was co-designed with the lived experience community and builds on SANE’s 36 years of experience in complex mental health.
“There are over 150,000 Australians living with complex mental health issues and they desperately need a support service that is more than a one-off counselling session; a service that provides continuity and connects them to others who can help make sense of what they’re going through and support them through tough times.
“When a person is referred, they are welcomed, befriended and supported in a way that works for them and their recovery. And, in an Australian-first, we’re providing much-needed ongoing support over a period of weeks or months, including welcoming participants to our online communities.
“People will have access to free counselling, peer support, group activities and health information, and be supported to develop a personalised recovery plan – all through a best-in-class digital platform designed for them to easily access what they need, when they need it. The service is open to people living with complex mental health issues and also to their family and carers.
“Initial data from the new service has shown how many people are still under-supported and isolated in their communities and this service provides immediate support for those living with complex mental health conditions.”
The Assistant Minister for Mental Health and Suicide Prevention, the Hon Emma McBride MP has welcomed the rollout of SANE’s new service in West Australia.
“Demand for mental health support has surged across the country in recent years, and Australians living with complex mental health disorders have been particularly impacted.
“This new service from SANE will not only help people who need specialised care and support, it will also help their families, carers, and their communities.
“The mental health and wellbeing of all Australians is a top priority for the Albanese Government, and I will continue to work closely with SANE and the lived experience community so people living with complex mental health disorders have access to the care and support they need.”
This service is currently available for self-referral and referral by a health professional across West Australia.
SANE is currently rolling out the service in a number of locations across the country with hopes of this being extended to all regions in the future.
People can check their eligibility and join the service at sane.org/referral and will be directed to other SANE services should they currently not be eligible at this time.
The service is delivered with the support of the Australian Government.