What the Royal Commission said

The Royal Commission called for a new type of service for people with mental illness or psychological distress.

The new service will provide short-term treatment, care and support in a residential community setting.

The new service should be:

  • an alternative to acute hospital-based care
  • delivered and managed by a workforce made up mainly of people with lived experience
  • operated in partnership with an area mental health service, and either a community health service, or a mental health community support service
  • independently evaluated.

What are the opportunities?

The Royal Commission identified gaps in mental health services offered to Victorians.

Lack of appropriate community-based care means a hospital admission is often the only way people can get help when they are acutely unwell.

This means:

  • consumers have reduced choice within a limited range of responses
  • people seek help at hospital emergency departments
  • some people can't get the right support when and where they need it.

In the past, people with lived experience have had little say in the design and running of bed-based services.

The Commission wants this to change and expects that future services will be more diverse and responsive.

What are we doing?

We are involving people with lived experience in the development of the new service.

This means that we are engaging with and listening to people with lived experience - giving them a genuine voice in designing the new service.

This provides an opportunity for consumers, families and carers to be at the centre of the service design and delivery, ensuring a new service for a new era.

What might a new service look like?

The new service will provide treatment, care and support in a home-like setting.

The service will mainly be run by workers with lived experience, which places peer-support approaches and lived experience leadership at the centre of the service.

The environment will be inclusive, safe, welcoming, accessible and offer a range of support and service options.

Importantly, the new service will lay the groundwork for a future that elevates the voices of people with lived experience in all areas of the mental health system across Victoria.