SupportConnect makes it easier for people suffering mental health issues to find the right care, from the right place, at the right time
Eastern Melbourne Primary Health Network (EMPHN) has launched SupportConnect, an innovative website and phone referral service which makes it easier for individuals to access the right mental health, alcohol and drug and suicide prevention support services for them.
Developed through dedicated federal funding, EMPHN’s SupportConnect will be available to almost 1.5 million people in Melbourne’s east and north-east. It means they can get the right treatment, care and support, close to home, their families, carers and support networks.
Designed by EMPHN through extensive community and stakeholder consultation, the SupportConnect website is a single, trustworthy source of information on local mental health service providers, what programs and support options they offer, and how they can be contacted.
The website is complemented by the SupportConnect phone team of qualified and experienced mental health professionals who have a deep understanding of the mental health, alcohol and drug and suicide prevention system in the local area.
While they do not provide direct counselling or crisis support services, the SupportConnect team do provide detailed information, help and referral options that are inclusive and culturally appropriate.
EMPHN CEO Janine Wilson said: “Simplifying the complex and often confusing pathways within the mental health system was a key recommendation of Victoria’s Royal Commission into Mental Health.
“SupportConnect was designed specifically to address this and focus on the needs of the individual, putting choice and control firmly at the centre of their experience.
“With continuing uncertainty around COVID-19, it has never been more critical that our community be able to find the help that suits them, whether that be online or over the phone.”
SupportConnect also has an interpreter call back service available to people from diverse backgrounds. And for people who are not confident using online services, SupportConnect has also developed resources that will be distributed through local community organisations to put the information into their hands.
Dr Precious McGuire, a local GP has said:
“SupportConnect is a welcome addition for both GPs and our patients to navigate the mental health network to find the resources, services and supports that best suit individuals, regardless of their background.
The way it prompts people to refine by the type of service and delivery method, whether referrals or fees apply and by specialist services means that more people in our diverse community will be able to access and use those services using SupportConnect.”
Julie Dwyer – Communications and Engagement Manager, EMPHN
M: 0419 176 705