The Andrews Labor Government is partnering with Ambulance Victoria and Barwon Health on an innovative trial that gives locals living with acute mental health issues the treatment and care they need, faster.
Premier Daniel Andrews today joined Minister for Mental Health Martin Foley to unveil the Prehospital Response of Mental Health and Paramedic Team (PROMPT) trial, which will see specialist mental health staff join paramedics in attending call-outs where mental health may be a factor.
The Victorian-first trial will mean patients are assessed and triaged sooner, and fewer patients will need to be taken to busy emergency departments.
The specialist mental health staff will arrive at call-outs in normal vehicles, removing the risk that patients may become further distressed by the sight of an ambulance.
Calls to Triple Zero could be answered by both paramedics and the specialist PROMPT team, or the PROMPT team may become the designated first responders.
The Labor Government is also building an Emergency Department Crisis Hub at University Hospital Geelong, so people needing urgent mental health treatment can get specialist, dedicated care.
To ensure a mental health system that works for all Victorians, the Labor Government will accept all recommendations that come from its landmark Royal Commission into Mental Health.
The PROMPT trial begins on 6 May and will operate from 2.30pm-11.30pm, Thursday to Monday.
Quote attributable to Premier Daniel Andrews
“This ground-breaking trial will give Victorians the right care, faster and take pressure off our hard working paramedics and emergency departments.”
Quote attributable to Minister for Mental Health Martin Foley
“While the Royal Commission gets to work paving the way for long-term reform, we’re working hard to improve mental health outcomes for people right across Barwon.”
Quote attributable to Minister for Health and Ambulance Services Jenny Mikakos
“Embedding mental health clinicians with paramedics will enhance existing community mental health supports, providing the best care when locals need it, and ensuring their access to acute psychiatry services and other care.”
Quote attributable to Member for South Barwon Darren Cheeseman
“We’re investing in the emergency care people in Geelong and the Barwon region need – with the new Crisis Hub and this Victorian-first trial of mental health specialists responding when they’re needed most.”