State & territory jurisdictional reports: Activity relating to mental health reform prior to the implementation of the Fourth National Mental Health Plan

18. Improve communication and the flow of information between primary care and specialist providers, and between clinical and community support services, through the development of new systems and processes that promote continuity of care and the development of cooperative service models

Page last updated: December 2010

Department of Health and Ageing

  • The Department of Health and Ageing funded the Mental Health Professionals' Association for Phase 1 of the Mental Health Interdisciplinary Networks (MHIN) project to develop a multi-disciplinary education and training package. The package includes: an environment scan to determine the ways in which mental health professions were working together in late 2007; a multi-disciplinary training package for mental health professionals; and the establishment and maintenance of a website to enable publication of Phase 1 project deliverables.
  • The Mental Health Professionals Network (MHPN) has been established to deliver the mental health multi-disciplinary training package, developed under MHIN Phase 1, for the primary care and specialist mental health workforce. It is expected to engage up to 24,000 mental health professionals through 1,200 workshops delivered between February 2009 and July 2010.
  • The MHIN project aims to promote shared and collaborative referral and treatment strategies in communities across Australia. General Practitioners, Psychiatrists, Occupational Therapists, Social Workers, Psychologists and Mental Health Nurses have been attending national wide education and training workshops to discuss collaborative mental health care and network with other local mental health clinicians. Clinicians attending the workshops receive continuing professional development points from their professions.
  • A web portal is also being developed which will allows for the establishment of online networks supported by a central administrative function.