Authors: Stephen Edwards, Chad Bennett, Felicity Lawrence, David Watkins, Janina Tomasoni
Event: 2000 TheMHS Conference
Subject: DUAL DISABILITY, ST VINCENTS HOSPITAL MELBOURNE, DUAL DISORDERS, SHOWCASE
Type of resource: Conference Presentations and Papers
Abstract: People with intellectual disability and mental illness (dual disability) have experienced difficulties with access to assessment and treatment in public mental health services in Australia for some time. Evidence has been presented in clinical, policy and human rights forums showing a greater incidence of mental illness in this population and the need for specialist service responses. Despite the notable work of a number of specialist centres around Australia, limited progress has been made on improving the response of the state adult mental health systems to the needs of people with a dual disability.
The Victorian Dual Disability Service is a state government funded initiative based at St. Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne that commenced in March 1999. It aims to improve the provision of mental health services to adults with dual disability across the state through:
1. Primary, secondary and tertiary consultation to consumers and service providers
2. Specialised training and education for mental health professionals.
3. Research in the area of dual disability
This paper will outline:
A The policy context and background to the development of a statewide service for people with dual disability.
B The model of clinical practice which the service has developed
C. An evaluation of the first year of operation along with an outline of future plans.