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First patients treated in Public Private Partnership tackling adolescent mental health

July 19, 2022

Adolescents and youth in South Western Sydney now have access to more mental health services thanks to a new $3 million Public Private Partnership between NSW Health and Ramsay Health Care.

The partnership provides new beds and day program spaces for patients at Ramsay Clinic Macarthur.

Ramsay Clinic Macarthur CEO, Natalie King, said her team worked collaboratively with the South Western Sydney Local Health District team to determine the best way to support youth and adolescents in the South Western Sydney area.

“We now have three inpatient beds and three new day programs at Ramsay Clinic Macarthur for 14-24-year-olds experiencing complex trauma, eating disorders and certain mood and anxiety disorders,” Ms King said. 

The inpatient beds are now available and we expect them to be in high demand for the 12 month trial period.

We have also commenced new day programs, two of which use Targeted Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT) specifically developed for the youth (18-24 years) and adolescent (14-17 years) age groups. 

Unfortunately recent data shows youth and adolescents are overrepresented in emergency department admissions for complex disorders including deliberate self-harm.

“DBT is a form of cognitive behaviour therapy, using conversations to help people who experience very strong emotions.  

“Through individual sessions with a trained mental health clinician, and including a parent/carer for adolescents, we discuss strong emotions and their impacts with an aim of reducing unhelpful behaviours and feelings. 

We have also established a new Eating Disorder Support day program for public youth and adolescents (aged 16 – 24 years).

Ramsay Mental Health will work collaboratively with the South Western Sydney Local Health District to ensure smooth pathways into and out of care, to minimise the time that young people with mental health concerns need to spend in emergency departments awaiting care.

Director of Ramsay Mental Health, Anne Mortimer, said she welcomed the partnership with the South Western Sydney Local Health District.

“Ramsay Health Care has a proud history of providing reliable, high-quality mental health care to Australians, so this partnership allows us to use our expertise to intervene early in the identification and treatment of mental health concerns in adolescents,Ms Mortimer said.

“We know young people are at risk of significant mood and anxiety disorders and they have a much higher prevalence of eating disorders than the general population, so the sooner we can help them, the better.”

Ramsay Health Care is the largest private provider of mental health services in Australia. The organisation operates 23 mental health units in New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia.

Ramsay Health Care has been committed to providing world-class standards of care for people affected by mental illness since 1964. With more than 1,000 mental health beds across the country, Ramsay Mental Health treats more than 70,000 patients each year

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