The ACMHN pleased to see mental health nurses as part of Head to Health teams
Tuesday 7 September 2021
Mental health nurses (MHNs) will be providing support at the 10 Head to Health pop-up mental health clinics being rolled out across Greater Sydney. The Australian College of Mental Health Nurses (ACMHN) welcomes the move, and encourages decision makers to keep working with qualified mental health nurses.
The federally-funded Head to Health clinics in NSW are based on similar clinics used in Victoria in 2020, and will be providing additional mental health support for people who are living in areas most affected by the recent NSW lockdown.
“We are pleased that mental health nurses will be part of the teams providing support, and would like to encourage decision makers to keep hiring and working with qualified mental health nurses,” ACMHN CEO Stephen Jackson said.
“MHNs will be able to offer those attending the clinics both physical and mental health support, as they hold the same graduate qualifications as registered nurses, but have completed postgraduate study in areas specific to mental health nursing.”
The rollout of these clinics comes at a time when the number of 12 to 17-year-olds presenting at emergency departments in NSW for self-harm or suicidal ideation is 49 per cent higher than it was in 2019.
“The latest NSW lockdown has been hard on everyone, especially students preparing for their HSC. But I know that MHNs can provide those living in lockdown-affected areas with a high level of holistic care, ably assisting the rest of the Head to Health teams,” Mr Jackson said.
The College hopes this is a step towards MHNs being given more opportunities to assist in supporting Australia’s mental health system by the federal government, which allocated $2.3 billion for mental health initiatives in 2021-2022.
For further comment, please contact ACMHN President, Dr Mike Hazelton on 0448 121 012 or at firstname.lastname@example.org