Using Psychological Formulation in Inpatient Mental Health Settings – Helping People Make Sense of Their Problems

Inpatient mental health settings are traditionally guided by the medical model, with treatment focusing primarily on psychiatric diagnosis and pharmacological interventions. A drawback of this approach is that people may feel labelled and not fully understood as individuals. To address this, the author advocates greater use of psychological formulation on inpatient mental health units. A psychological formulation may include: Present Problems – Focusing on individual symptoms that are problematic for …

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Telehealth Initiative to Improve Rural Access

Regional Health Minister Dr David Gillespie has welcomed a telehealth initiative commencing which allows improved access to psychological services, for regional Australians. He says a major barrier to rural residents accessing vital mental health treatment will be removed by a new Medicare rebate being introduced for online videoconferencing mental health consultations, with psychologists, social workers and occupational therapists. The Coalition government initiative will cost $9.1 million over four years from 2017–18 …

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One Stop Shop for Mental Health Services Moves Australia’s Mental Health Care Online

People suffering mental problems will from today be able to get help from a one stop mental health service combining help from 26 mental health providers including Headspace, Beyond Blue and Mind Frame. Health Minister Greg Hunt will launch the comprehensive Head to Health website that includes access to free or low-cost apps, online support communities, online courses and phone services. One in five Australians experience a mental health problems every year …

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Livewire, Starlight’s Adolescent Program Trialled at Royal Children’s Hospital

Since 1988, the Starlight Children’s Foundation (Starlight) has been delivering programs in partnership with health professionals to support children, young people and their families who are living with a serious illness or health condition. Starlight is the broadest reaching children’s charity in Australia, supporting children and teenagers with all types of serious illness, including mental health conditions. Young people represent over 20% of admissions at some paediatric hospitals and typically …

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How Better Designed Therapy Spaces Could Improve Mental Health Treatment

The buildings we inhabit can change the way we feel. That’s particularly relevant when designing mental health spaces, and yet there are no real guidelines that cover this field. With one in five Australians experiencing a mental illness in any year, a researcher at the Melbourne School of Design says it’s worth considering how to design the spaces in which therapy takes place. Stephanie Liddicoat is nearing the completion of her …

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Australia’s First Ever ‘Dementia Village’ Will Be Built In Tasmania

A $25 million village for people with dementia will be built in Tasmania, aimed at providing a real life experience for those with the disease. The village, Korongee, will be based on a similar one in The Netherlands, the De Hogeweyk village, which mimics a small town setting and creates conditions so that residents are challenged by recognisable incentives to remain active in daily life. Korongee will have a cul de sac …

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The Opportunities and Challenges for Public and Private Mental Health Services in Australia

In August 2015 a presentation to the 16th International Mental Health Conference by Sandy Thomson from GovernancePlus provided delegates with an overview of the opportunities and challenges for public and private Mental Health services in Australia in meeting the National Standards and the National Mental Health Standards requirements for accreditation purposes. Included in the presentation were observed examples of how use of the Standards were improving systems of mental health …

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Mental Illness Need Not Be a Death Sentence, Allan Fels Warns

People with a serious mental illness are dying on average 14 to 23 years earlier than other Australians, prompting a push for a ­national focus on delivering longer, healthier, happier lives. National Mental Health Commission chairman Allan Fels said yesterday it was neither acceptable nor inevitable that people with mental illness had poorer physical health and died sooner. Ahead of a speech to the ­National Press Club, Professor Fels said …

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Harvesting Your Health

Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) individuals and communities continue to be a topic of focus in Australia, a nation founded on an identity of immigration. While prevalence of mental illness in these groups mirror those of a white Australian population, those from CALD backgrounds often report higher symptom severity, greater social isolation, a reduction in feelings of community, and are often less likely to be formerly diagnosed. There is a …

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Victoria Commits $500,000 For LGBTQ Mental Health Ahead Of ‘Damaging’ Plebiscite

Victoria prepares for marriage plebiscite, despite plans stalling. Canberra – The federal government seems to have temporarily shelved its plan to hold a plebiscite on marriage equality, but the Victorian government is still preparing for the “damaging” national vote by boosting funding to LGBTQ mental health support services. The plebiscite, first put forward by the Abbott government, has been carried on as a Turnbull administration policy. Despite plans for the vote …

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