Whewth, get ready for a long post, as MHCN’s policy and advocacy team have been hard at work and have lots to share with you all!
MHCN will host a Carers of Forensic and Corrections Patients Network Meeting on Tuesday, May 31st, 10:30am – 12:30pm in collaboration with Erika Ballance, Family & Carer Consultant, Justice Health and Forensic Mental Health Network.
The meeting will be held online via Zoom. If you are interested in joining the meeting or would like more information, please contact Prasheela Karan, Policy Officer, MHCN:
Update on the Mental Health Act Resources Co-Design Project
The Mental Health Act Resources Co-Design Project aims to create resources to help carers understand their rights when someone they care for received treatment. The project has involved research to learn more about how carers are notified of their rights under the Mental Health Act, including notification about Mental Health Review Tribunal Hearings. This month we presented our initial findings to the steering committee and to the Ministry.
Update on the Forensic Information Sheets Project
The policy team has been working with a number of stakeholders, including the Mental Health Review Tribunal, NSW Health, the Mental Health Advocacy Service, consumer representatives, Justice Health and Forensic Mental Health Network and other agencies to produce forensic information sheets. We consulted with carers of forensic patients in this process for their views, and have identified the need to produce information sheets specifically for carers. We hope to co-design resources with carers later this year.
Supporting Outcomes for Carers through the Election
MHCN sent a pre-election letter to the spokespersons of the major parties on the significant issues facing carers of forensic and corrections patients. Carers talked at length in several meetings about the issues that were important to them with MHCN, and expressed how important it was to raise awareness on these issues.
Update on MHCNs Policy Committee
MHCN has recruited carers with experience of advocacy and strong networks with carers in their communities to sit on a new policy committee which focuses on proactively responding to priority issues that affect carers. The first meeting of the committee is scheduled for next week.
Update on our engagement with decision makers
The policy team has had a busy month which included meetings with decision makers at the:
- Suicide Prevention Policy Review Expert Reference working group at the ACI.
- Older Persons Mental Health Working Group at the NSW Ministry of Health.
- Action 9 Project Working Group at the Mental Health Commission which aims to improve the way that services involve people with lived experience of mental illness and caring in co-design, co-delivery and co-evaluation.
- The Trauma Informed Care Working Group at the ACI.
- The Forensic Policy Review Expert Advisory Committee at the NSW Ministry of Health.