Central west aims for better mental health outcomes

Longreach roundtable looks to improve communication between providers and avoid duplication in mental health arena


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Every service provider in the central west participated in the round table in Longreach on Monday. Photos supplied.

Every service provider in the central west participated in the round table in Longreach on Monday. Photos supplied.

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Targeting mental health funding and service delivery to reach the right people at the right time and avoid duplication was the aim of a roundtable discussion between mental health providers in the state’s central west on Monday.

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Targeting mental health funding and service delivery to reach the right people at the right time and avoid duplication was the aim of a roundtable discussion between mental health providers in the state’s central west on Monday.

As a result of the meeting, attended by every mental health provider in the central west, a number of actions will be initiated to support better connections and greater cross-agency advocacy for better health outcomes for the region.

They will also be based on researched needs of the community.

The discussion was hosted by the Remote Area Planning and Development Board and the Western Queensland Primary Health Network, and RAPAD chairman and Barcaldine Regional Council mayor, Rob Chandler, said he had no doubt when they met again in 12 months, they would have much better communications and working relationship between service providers.

“When someone gets in strife we will know exactly who to call,” Cr Chandler said.

The roundtable discussions were facilitated by the WQPHN and its CEO, Stuart Gordon, said it enabled an important exchange of ideas and information from all organisations and highlighted a number of key areas where there can be improvement.

All smiles at the conclusion of the roundtable were RAPAD chairman, Cr Rob Chandler, Central West Hospital and Health service chairman, Jane Williams, RAPAD CEO, David Arnold, and WQPHN CEO, Stuart Gordon. Photo supplied.

All smiles at the conclusion of the roundtable were RAPAD chairman, Cr Rob Chandler, Central West Hospital and Health service chairman, Jane Williams, RAPAD CEO, David Arnold, and WQPHN CEO, Stuart Gordon. Photo supplied.

“As an organisation that commissions services in the central west, bringing stakeholders together to consider practical solutions that increase access to the right care at the right time is central to achieving better quality for the people of the region,” he said.

“We will be actively working to improve our collective impact to address mental health stigma, workforce challenges, funding and communication, including how non-clinical support by trusted local advocates can be incorporated into the local mental health support networks.”

Queensland Mental Health Commissioner, Ivan Frkovic, attended the meeting and encouraged local networks to do more to ensure better integration of services locally.

“When service providers collaborate, remove barriers to seamless integration, improve communication and advocacy across networks, we create a system that is easier to navigate and access.

“This is what consumers want and expect and the commission strongly supports the roundtable discussions and commends the WQPHN and RAPAD for hosting this important event.”

Cr Chandler added that once RAPAD was confident the community was getting value and service from a well coordinated service, it could advocate very strongly on behalf of the WQPHN and hospital boards with state and federal governments.

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