Services

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Public community mental health services

 

Public community mental health services are free services and programs that support people with mental illness.

These services may be provided in a clinic or in a person’s home.  A range of different mental health workers work in community mental health services.

Some common services are:

  • acute care teams. Acute care teams see people with a mental illness who need help right away.
  • home care teams. Home care teams provide care to people in their homes.
  • early psychosis teams. Psychosis is a type of mental illness when someone might find it hard to tell what is real. These teams provide care to people when they first find out they have psychosis.
  • assertive outreach teams. Assertive outreach teams provide care and support to people with serious mental illness and complex issues. This includes care co-ordination and advocacy.

To find out more about community mental health services:

  • ring the NSW Mental Health Line on 1800 011 511 any time, on any day. The mental health worker will ask you questions about your mental health and what sort of help you need. They may refer you to the local mental health team or they may give you information and contact details about other services that can help you.
  • visit healthdirect
  • for adults, visit NSW Mental health programs for adults
  • for carers, parents and older people visit NSW Health  
  • visit the members page of the Mental Health Coordinating Council.

      

Crisis services

 

Crisis services are services that protect people who are at risk of harm. A crisis is when you are in danger or are very upset.

You may be in danger if:

  • you want to hurt yourself
  • you want to hurt someone else
  • you want to die.

If someone is in danger and needs help right away call 000.

See the Emergency help page for more information on who to contact in a crisis.

There are several different crisis services. These include:

  • ambulance or the police (call 000)
  • emergency departments
  • acute care teams
  • phone lines.

To find out more about crisis services:

If you need to speak with a mental health worker, you can ring the NSW Mental Health Line on 1800 011 511 any time, on any day. The mental health worker will ask you questions about your mental health and what sort of help you need. They may refer you to the local mental health team or they may give you information and contact details about other services that can help you.

 

Emergency help card

An emergency help card can keep you and others safe in a crisis. An emergency help card can support you and others to:

  • know what to do in a crisis
  • know who to contact in a crisis
  • call phone lines that can support you in a crisis

You can use the Emergency help card template to make an Emergency Card that is right for you.

 

Hospital based services

 

Emergency departments

Emergency departments are usually in hospitals. They are sometimes called EDs.

The emergency department is usually where you go if you have an urgent health problem, especially if you cannot get the help you need in the community.   

People usually go to the emergency department:

  • by ambulance
  • with someone they know.

You can ask someone you trust to take you to the emergency department. You do not need an appointment to go to an emergency department.

Doctors and nurses help people in the emergency department.

 

Inpatient units

An inpatient unit is part of a hospital. Being an inpatient means you stay in hospital for one or more nights.

Inpatient units support people with mental illness who need a greater level of care than they can get in the community.

People usually enter an inpatient unit from an emergency department or community mental health service.

If you need to stay in hospital for your mental health, you may be a voluntary patient or an involuntary patient.

  • When you choose to go to hospital, this is called being a voluntary patient. You or your guardian will have a choice in what treatment you have.
    • You can find out more here
    • You can find out about your rights here
  • Being an involuntary patient is when you must stay in hospital for your mental health until you are well enough to go home. It is not your choice when you can leave. You may be given a treatment you need even if you do not want it.
    • You can find out more here
    • You can find out about your rights here

3DN has more Easy Read information sheets about mental health and going to hospital here.

 

Outpatient clinics

An outpatient clinic is usually in or near a hospital. You visit health workers here, often after you have stayed in hospital. You are an outpatient if you visit a clinic or hospital for treatment but do not stay overnight.

Outpatient clinics provide specific care. For example, a psychiatry clinic provides mental health treatment.

To find out more about outpatient clinics visit NSW Health.

To find out more about outpatient care talk to your GP or mental health worker.

 

Rehabilitation

Rehabilitation services support people’s recovery. Recovery means getting better so you can do the things you want to do. Rehabilitation services can be provided in and out of hospitals. You may stay in a rehabilitation hospital as an inpatient or get support in an outpatient clinic.

Rehabilitation services help you to:

  • keep
  • get back or
  • improve 

skills for daily living that may have been affected if you had a mental illness.

Rehabilitation services provide care from multiple health workers.

To find out more about rehabilitation services visit healthdirect.

To find a rehabilitation service:

 

Specialist Intellectual Disability Health services

 

Specialist Intellectual Disability Health services help people with intellectual disability who have a mental illness.

Specialists are people who know a lot about intellectual disability.

 

Statewide Intellectual Disability Mental Health Hubs

There are two Statewide Intellectual Disability Mental Health Hubs that can help people with intellectual disability across NSW.

There is one for adults and one for children and adolescents.

A referral from your mental health worker is needed to get support from these hubs.

 

The Statewide Intellectual Disability Mental Health Outreach Service (SIDMHOS)

This service is for adults.

To find out more about SIDMHOS visit:

 

The Sydney Children’s Hospital Network Mental Health and Intellectual Disability Hub (SCHN MHID Hub)

This service is for children and adolescents under age 18.

To find out more about SCHN MHID Hub visit:

 

The Specialised Intellectual Disability Health Teams

These specialised health teams work in NSW Health Local Health Districts. They help people with intellectual disability and complex health needs.

The teams work with your GP or other health workers to provide advice, make health care plans, and suggest other services that could support you.

There are 6 Specialised Intellectual Disability Health Teams (SIDHT) in these Local Health Districts.

These services can also support people living in other parts of NSW.

Please note the contact details are provided so you get more information. You cannot get an appointment without a referral from your GP or health worker.

 

Hunter New England

Eligible people in the Central Coast Local Health District can also be seen by the team.

Email: [email protected]

Phone: 02 4924 6067

 

Northern Sydney

Northern Sydney Intellectual Disability Health Team

This team sees adults and children. It is based in Cremorne.

People in the Mid North Coast and Northern NSW Local Health Districts can also be seen by the team.

Find out more in this factsheet. 

Email: [email protected]

Phone: 02 8968 3400

 

South Eastern Sydney

South Eastern Sydney Local Health District Specialised Intellectual Disability Health Team

The team does health assessments for people with intellectual disability who have complex health conditions.

Find out more here.

Email: SESLHD-SpecialistIntellectualDisabilityHealthTeam@health.nsw.gov.au

Phone: 9113 4961 or 02 8566 1222

 

South Western Sydney

The Fairfield Specialist Disability Health Team

The team can help people with intellectual disability across all ages.

People in the Southern NSW Local Health District can be seen by the team.

Email: [email protected]

Phone: 02 9794 1820

 

Sydney Local Health District Team

The Specialist Team for Intellectual Disability (STrIDeS)

STrIDeS provides health assessments, care plans and can help with referrals to other services.

People in the Western Sydney Local Health District can be seen by the team.

Email: [email protected]

Phone: 02 9378 1364 or 02 9378 1100

 

Western NSW

Eligible people in the Far West and Murrumbidgee Local Health Districts can be seen by the team.

Email: [email protected]

Phone: 02 6369 8542

Complex Care Service

The Complex Care Service is for adults with intellectual disability who have complex health needs and cannot get these needs met by another service. The service is run by the Centre for Disability Studies. The service provides multidisciplinary health assessments, healthcare plans, advice, and referrals, led by a Nurse. Appointments are available in person, at their Strathfield clinic or via telehealth. The service is funded by the Ministry of Health until June 2024.

Individuals must be 18 years or over, live in NSW, have an intellectual disability, and have unmet complex health care concerns that another service cannot meet.

Referral is by a GP or an Intellectual Disability Health Service. Referrals can be sent via [email protected].

Phone: Clinic Telephone – 0434 121 767 or Centre for Disability Studies Main office – 02 9036 3600

Email: [email protected]

 

3DN Clinic for the Assessment of Neuropsychiatric Disorders in Intellectual Disability (CANDID)

CANDID is based at the Prince of Wales Hospital in Randwick. It helps people when their doctors are not sure what type of mental illness they have or how best to care for them.

A referral from your specialist health worker is needed to get support from CANDID.

The service sees people 18 years or older. Referrals for people aged 16-17 years may be considered after discussing with the team.

Find out more about CANDID including this factsheet.

 

Private psychiatrists

A small number of private psychiatrists specialise in working with people with intellectual disability. Private psychiatrists work for themselves.

To find a psychiatrist: