In the past five years, there has been significant reform of the mental health system, including the appointment of the State’s first Minister for Mental Health (external site)
, the establishment of Australia’s first Mental Health Commission (external site)
and creation of the Department of Health’s Office of Mental Health (now the Mental Health Unit).
The Mental Health Unit
The Mental Health Unit (MHU) was formed on 1 July 2016 as part of the implementation of the Health Services Act 2016 new governance arrangements.
The MHU provides leadership, innovation, direction and support for Statewide mental health clinical policy and planning that will guide and promote best practice in mental health services and facilitate the delivery of better and safer mental health care for all West Australians.
Functions and responsibilities of the Mental Health Unit include:
- Monitoring the implementation of key Stokes Review recommendations
- Working closely with the Mental Health Commission in the development of planning to support implementation of The Western Australian Mental Health, Alcohol and Other Drug Services Plan 2015-2025 (external site) (the Plan)
- Providing liaison and coordinating communication across the divisions of the Department of Health and Health Service Providers
- Developing state wide governance, clinical policies and guidelines for mental health services
- Working closely with the Office of the Chief Psychiatrist (external site) to ensure compliance with the Chief Psychiatrist’s regulations
- Providing advice to the Minister for Health and Minister for Mental Health
- Accountable for assisting and supporting WA’s Mental Health Services within North Metropolitan Health Service (external site), South Metropolitan Health Service, East Metropolitan Health Service, Western Australian Country Health Service (external site), and Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (external site) to deliver an evidence-based, patient-centred, caring, safe, respectful and supportive mental health system for all Western Australians.