The community of Brimbank is set to create a new model of mental health and wellbeing with the support of cohealth, Clarity Health Care and the University of Melbourne as part of the first wave of mental health reforms in Victoria.
cohealth has said that the establishment of six new Mental Health and Wellbeing services across Victoria is a testament to the contribution of lived experience to creating systemic change.
“People with lived and living experience of mental ill-health, their carers and families shared their experiences and their vision for services that would meet their needs as part of the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System,” said Nicole Bartholomeusz, Chief Executive, cohealth.
“It was these powerful testimonies which drove the most monumental reforms to the Victorian mental health system in decades,” she said.
The statement came after the Victorian Government announced that in collaboration cohealth, Clarity Health Care and the University of Melbourne would deliver the Brimbank Local Mental Health and Wellbeing Service. “The community of Brimbank has an opportunity to design a service they need, close to home and to know it will be available when they need it,” said Ms Bartholomeusz.
“cohealth has been a provider of community mental health services for over 20 years, most recently delivering four of the Victorian Government’s Mental Health and Wellbeing Hubs to respond to the mental health impacts of COVID.”
“We are honoured to be able to continue to work with the people of Brimbank to improve mental health and wellbeing outcomes through a partnership that builds on our strong existing relationships with Melbourne’s west,” said Ms Bartholomeusz.
cohealth says that the co-design process will be vitally important in developing the new Brimbank mental health services.
“Along with our partners we’ll be walking hand-in-hand with the Brimbank community to ensure they shape the design and delivery of their service,” said Ms Bartholomeusz.
“We’ll be focussed on first understanding how people with lived experience and their families and carers think about mental health and wellbeing and how this community wants to experience services.”
“We are honoured to be paving the way to a truly collaborative approach to delivering local mental health services that consumers want and need.”
“We’ll be delivering innovation and best practice in mental health and wellbeing to Brimbank residents and creating a cohesive system that draws on the existing strengths of the community and other services in the area,” said Ms Bartholomeusz.
Clarity Health Care said the partnership represented an exciting opportunity.
“We are excited to be part of this new approach to mental health and wellbeing delivery in Victoria. We look forward to working with cohealth and the University of Melbourne to deliver innovative evidence based and compassionate care with and for the people of Brimbank,” said Clarity founder Clare Groves.
“The partnership will ensure that integrated, wrap-around care for people with any form of mental ill-health will be easily accessed and that the hope for recovery and meaningful outcomes will be consistently realised,” said Ms Groves.
Professor Jane Gunn, Dean, Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences, University of Melbourne, said, “We are delighted to partner with cohealth and Clarity Health for this exciting new initiative which will support the appointment of joint clinical-academic psychiatry staff and provide opportunities for multidisciplinary collaboration.
“As a global leader in mental health research, The University of Melbourne is well placed to support the implementation of new models of care and strengthen translational research for culturally diverse and vulnerable groups,” said Prof Gunn.
The Brimbank local mental health service will start operating in 2022.
While the service is being codesigned with the community, people can still access support via the existing cohealth Mental Health and Wellbeing Hubs in Brimbank, Moonee Valley, Melton and Melbourne.
The Brimbank local Mental Health and Wellbeing Service is one of six announced by the Victorian Government which represent recommendations flowing from the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System.
More information: Lanie.Harris@cohealth.org.au or 0418 552 377