Queensland mental health services
Mental health care in Queensland is delivered by a range of providers operating within and across different sectors.
Clinical assessment and treatment services providing crisis response, acute, non-acute and continuing treatment services in inpatient and community settings, are provided by public and private sector mental health services and health practitioners.
A variety of other interventions to support mental health and recovery are provided by other government and non-government sectors. These may include services delivered by a housing or employment agency, or personal care from a non-government community support provider.
All sectors, including public mental health services, other government agencies and non-government organisations are involved in identifying and intervening early with people who are at risk of developing mental illness and facilitating timely and effective recovery-oriented pathways to care. Key groups requiring particular attention in mental health prevention and early intervention include children of parents with mental illness, children and youth who have experienced, or are at risk of abuse/neglect, and young people displaying behaviour disturbances, and their families.
Public mental health services
Public mental health services are provided in each of the Hospital and Health Services. They deliver specialised assessment, clinical treatment and rehabilitation services to reduce symptoms of mental illness and facilitate recovery. These services are focused primarily on providing care to Queenslanders who experience the most severe forms of mental illness and behavioural disturbances, and those who may fall under the provisions of the Mental Health Act 2016.
Public mental health services work in collaboration with primary health and private sector health providers who assist individuals with mental health problems and facilitate access to specialist public and private mental health services when required.
Primary health care providers may include general practitioners, community health workers, nurses, allied health professionals, school health nurses, counsellors and community support groups.
Private mental health services
Private mental health services are delivered by psychiatrists, mental health nurses, clinical psychologists, social workers and other allied health professionals with expertise in mental health care. They provide a broad range of services through office-based private practice and inpatient care within private hospitals, including dedicated private psychiatric hospitals.
Non-government organisations include not-for-profit community agencies, consumer, family and carer groups and other community-based services that provide a range of treatment, disability support and care services, which complement both public and private mental health services. These organisations are the primary providers of psychiatric disability support for people with mental illness and play an important role in promoting and maintaining mental health and well-being.
Mental Health Community Support Services
Under Connecting Care to Recovery 2016-2021: a plan for Queensland’s State-funded mental health, alcohol and other drug services (Connecting Care to Recovery), Queensland Health has prioritised strategies and investment across the continuum of care to more effectively meet the needs of individuals experiencing severe and persistent mental illness.
This includes investment in Mental Health Community Support Services (MH CSS) which comprise psychosocial support services that are non-clinical, holistic, wraparound and recovery-focused. These services are delivered on a one-to-one basis, peer-to-peer or group peer-based, according to the individual’s recovery needs.
In Queensland, MH CSS are delivered through non-government organisations (NGOs) and are an integral component of the continuum of care for people experiencing severe and persistent mental illness which includes community treatment, community bed-based and hospital bed-based services delivered through Queensland’s Hospital and Health Services.