Work is progressing on development of Darwin’s Adult Mental Health Centre, with the location confirmed in Casuarina and the centre officially named as Darwin Head to Health.
The project, being delivered in partnership with Neami National and Larrakia Nation, has reached some significant milestones in recent weeks.
Northern Territory Primary Health Network CEO Gill Yearsley said, “As part of the national approach to establishing these adult mental health centres, new branding has been released and our centre here in Darwin will be officially known as Darwin Head to Health. This aligns with other similar centres interstate.”
Darwin Head to Health will focus on providing people with social and emotional wellbeing and mental health support, without having to wait for long periods to get an appointment. The multi-disciplinary team will work with each person to help to reduce distress, and then if needed, connect them with the right support for later.
It will be located at 16 Scaturchio Street in Casuarina. Local businesses MODE and Barpa are working with the project partners on the building fit-out.
Ms Yearsley said, “The location has been selected so that it’s close to public transport, central and near other complementary services.”
Northern Territory Primary Health Network has been funded through the Australian Government and will receive $14 million over four years to establish and operate the centre. Darwin is one of eight trial sites across Australia for the Adult Mental Health Centres, which aim to provide a welcoming, ‘no wrong door’ entry point for adults to access mental health information, services and supports, providing more accessible services to those needing mental health support.
Neami National, CEO Tom Dalton said, “In the Territory, it’s critical that our services are culturally appropriate and reflect the needs of people in times of distress as well as support their families and carers. Darwin Head to Health will provide a welcoming calm and inclusive environment, where local people feel safe and cared for. We’re fortunate to be working closely with Larrakia Nation and the broader Darwin community to achieve those goals.”
To date, a range of local organisations and individuals, including people with a lived experience of mental health challenges, have provided input to the co-design process to make sure services are appropriate, meet local needs and are not duplicating existing services.
Northern Territory PHN will continue to work with local partners including NT Health, AMSANT, Danila Dilba, Team Health and Anglicare to coordinate planning and support services.
The next steps will be to:
• complete the fit out of the centre
• continue with the consultation and co-design of the centre through working with people with lived experience, General Practice, NGOs, Top End Mental Health and other key stakeholders to plan the pathways of care for the centre
• continue to recruit and train staff who will be working in the centre.
It is anticipated, the Darwin Head to Health Centre will open in a staged way from November 2021 and operate from Monday to Friday 10 am – 10 pm and Weekends 12 pm Midday to 8 pm.
Information on the national trial is available at: https://www.health.gov.au/resources/publications/budget-2019-20-prioritising-mental-health-adult-mental-health-centres
For more information on Darwin Head to Health you can visit: https://www.ntphn.org.au/programs/adult-mental-health-centre-darwin/
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