$8 MILLION PROGRAM OPENS DOORS FOR MENTAL HEALTH AND DRUG TREATMENT
FROM THE MINISTER FOR MENTAL HEALTH
DATE: Monday, June 4, 2007
The Government of Victoria, Australia, is leading the way in the new $8 million dual diagnosis program for treating people with both mental health and drug and alcohol problems, Minister for Mental Health Lisa Neville said.
Minister for mental Health Lisa Neville
Ms Neville said the leading-edge dual diagnosis treatment helped to stop people with both mental health and drug problems falling between the cracks.
“Dual diagnosis is a crucial new treatment approach, as it tackles both mental health and drug issues at once,” Ms Neville said.
“Health experts understand that many people with mental health problems also have issues with alcohol and other drugs. The Bracks Government is leading the way with an unprecedented $8million investment in this leading edge and highly effective treatment.”
The $8 million program established by the Bracks Government is delivering:
· Four dual diagnosis teams (38 staff) that provide direct care to the most complex dual diagnosis cases and to support staff in mental health and drug treatment services across the state, with eight staff specifically target young people;
· Youth dual diagnosis positions to support young people in residential rehabilitation services;
· 21 professionals to work in the state’s mental health mobile support and treatment teams focusing on dual diagnosis needs.
· Innovative training positions (156 staff trained over 3 years) supported by a statewide education and training unit, which will enable staff to rotate between services and sectors to gain broader experience; and
· Funding for dual diagnosis specialist psychiatrists to provide expert clinical input and leadership.
Ms Neville today released statewide service guidelines for the coordinated treatment of patients with mental health and drug problems, Dual Diagnosis: Key Directions and priorities for service development.
“We are rolling out these guidelines across the state, so that health professionals can deliver the best possible treatment to mental health and drug patients wherever they live,” Ms Neville said.
“These guidelines will deliver better, more coordinated response to both health issues.”
Ms Neville said the dual diagnosis approach was introduced because, in the past, many patients were being ‘bounced’ between mental health treatment services and drug treatment services.
“This cutting edge approach to mental health and drug treatment means there is no ‘wrong door’ for a person needing treatment,” she said.