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Mental Health treatment services for residents of residential aged care facilities 

Mental Health treatment services for residents of residential aged care facilities 

Adelaide PHN has commissioned new mental health services for older people with mental health conditions who reside in residential aged care facilities (RACFs). Funding for the new services are provided through the Commonwealth Government’s Psychological Treatment Services for people with mental illness in RACFs budget measure.  

Adelaide PHN has commissioned Relationships Australia South Australia (RASA) to deliver primary mental health care services through an in-reach model, onsite at RACFs. The services will be known as Supporting Emotional Wellness in Aged Care.  

The services delivered to RACF residents will be consistent with other primary mental health care services commissioned by Adelaide PHN, in that they will be delivered within a broader stepped care framework. Clinical services will be delivered by suitably qualified mental health clinicians such as psychologists, accredited mental health social workers and occupational therapists, and mental health nurses.  

Referrals for services will target residents who are presenting with;  

  • significant transition issues and experiencing adjustment disorders 
  • a mild to moderate mental health condition (e.g. anxiety and/or depression) 
  • a history of mental illness for which they received services before being admitted to a RACF which could not be continued  

The expected benefits of psychological services for RACF residents are improvements in mood, adjustment and functioning. 

The services are not intended to support residents with significant behavioural issues, or severe and complex needs that would be better managed by specialised state-based mental health services, such as Older Persons Mental Health Services or by the Dementia Behaviour Management Advisory Service. The new primary mental health care services will not duplicate the role of leisure and recreation activities already provided to residents by RACFs.  

Supporting Emotional Wellness in Aged Care will be available to RACFs that register to be part of the program with registrations open from February 2020 onwards.  RACFs can review the implementation guide here and register via an online form here

As an innovative service being introduced across the Adelaide PHN region, a phased implementation process will be undertaken. Services will not be available across the Adelaide PHN region immediately but will commence February 2020 and expand over the following months. 


This service has been added to Adelaide PHN's Directory of Services and Programs, the listing includes information about the services provided, service documents and referral information - view the service listing here.  

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