A new model of care for people with a dual diagnosis of mental illness and alcohol and drug related issues was formally launched today in the Wheatbelt.
Mental Health Minister Graham Jacobs said the new integrated health service was a first for the region and would greatly improve services to clients.
The new approach had been formalised in a Memorandum of Understanding signed today between the WA Country Health Service Wheatbelt Mental Health Service and the Holyoake Wheatbelt Community Drug Service team.
“This is an innovative approach, providing for the ‘virtual co-location’ of services by the two health providers - Government and non-government - for the benefit of patients with mental health and drug and alcohol related issues,” Dr Jacobs said.
“For clients this means a ‘no wrong door policy’.
“Although not physically located together, the two services will be virtually co-located sharing patient information and effectively co-case managing clients.
“This will mean patients won’t have to tell their story twice, regardless of which service they attend and provides a more efficient and improved service for them.”
Nationally, it is estimated that up to 80 per cent of patients accessing either mental health or drug and alcohol services have a dual diagnosis.
The Memorandum of Understanding formalises the process in the Wheatbelt of shared care of client issues such as the sharing of patient information and confidentiality.
Minister's office - 9213 6900