Mar 27
LikeMind – Reducing Mental Health Stigma

More than 180 people have walked through the door at LikeMind Orange to access mental health services since it opened in October last year.

In a first for the Central West, LikeMind Orange is one-stop community mental health service for people living with mental health issues, their families and carers.

Western NSW Local Health District’s Director of Mental Health, Drug and Alcohol, Jason Crisp, said that Mental Illness is something that can affect us all and having a one stop mental health shop in the community is vital to reducing stigma associated with mental health issues.

"LikeMind is a new way of providing mental health care by providing triage, assessment, care coordination and discharge planning services in one central spot," Mr Crisp said.

"Prevention and early intervention is our priority and we make sure that the person drives everything we do and has a choice in their care options."

"The LikeMind model recognises that people living with mental health issues often have a complex range of health and social needs – and offers easier access to a wider range of services."

World Bipolar Day (March 30) also exists to reduce the stigma around mental health. Bipolar Disorder is a chronic mental health condition characterised by strong changes in mood and energy.

Statistics recently released by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare show that 62 people were hospitalised overnight in Orange for bipolar and mood disorders in 2014-15.

"Since then, Western NSW Local Health District has been transforming its mental health, drug and alcohol services into a more contemporary way of caring for people with mental health issues," Mr Crisp said.

"LikeMind is pioneering the transformation with a very innovative approach where a complete team of government health professionals work out of a non-government centre."

Services offered at LikeMind are delivered by a number of partner agencies including Western NSW Local Health District who is the principal partner and has a newly formed team located on site.

Aftercare leads the service and Clinical Leader at LikeMind Orange, Sharon Jones, said the service is delivering promising results.

"LikeMind is a unique place for people who have mental health issues and our partners, who have both been making the most of the space and our services," Ms Jones said.

"The model is working because we are able to offer people everything that they might need for their mental health issues in one spot."

Media enquiries: Emily Mitchell, MHDA Communications Officer, Western NSW Local Health District via Emily.mitchell1@health.nsw.gov.au