Mental health providers gather in Tamworth

A mental health conference in Tamworth is focussing on how to implement a new program designed to bring together eight mental health providers to improve access to services for those needing support.

The Partners In Recovery program was announced in July this year, and has secured funding until 2016.

It’ll operate across the entire New England North West, controlled by lead agency Richmond PRA.

CEO of Richmond PRA, Pamela Rutledge, says a main focus will be catching the people who slip through the cracks of the multiple providers.

“We don’t necessarily always work as collaboratively as we should and people can slip through the cracks and sometimes carers and people with mental illness find it really hard to navigate through the system,” she said.

“So, we really want to look at, from the consumer’s point of view, how we can make it all work better.”

Pamela Rutledge says finding the people who really need help is key.

“They might be in contact with the acute unit at the hospital, or they might be in contact with a private psychologist of psychiatrist,” she said.

“Many people with a mental illness get most of their care from a general practitioner and so we hope we’ll really identify the ways we haven’t previously tried to find and reach people.”

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