In a life threatening emergency dial Triple Zero (000)

In a life threatening emergency dial Triple Zero (000)
ACT Public Hospitals

Canberra Hospital

5124 0000


Calvary Hospital

6201 6111

Mental Health

Call Mental Health Triage on

1800 629 354

(free call except from mobiles or public phones) or

6205 1065

Poisons Hotline

For a poison emergency in Australia call

131126

Drug and Alcohol Help Line

The Drug and Alcohol Help Line is available 24-hours, 7 days a week on

5124 9977

Health Protection Service

For after hours urgent public health matters including environmental health, radiation safety, food poisoning and communicable disease management phone:

(02) 6205 1700

healthdirect

24 hour health advice

1800 022 222

ACT State Emergency Service

Emergency help
during flood or storms

132 500


Mental Health Treatment Plans


Indicator  description

The number of appointments with a General Practitioner (GP) for the development, review or consultation of a mental health treatment plan for ACT children and young people.

What do we  measure?

The number of GP appointments concerning mental health treatment plans is reported in the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) records.

For the purposes of this indicator, six MBS treatment items related to GP Mental Health Treatment Plans were measured. These include the number of appointments, lasting at least 20 minutes or more than 40 minutes, to prepare a GP Mental Health Treatment Plan with medical practitioners. In addition, the number of appointments for treatment consultation under a mental health plan or a review of a mental health plan were also included.

Why is this important?

Young people who experience mental health problems and/or disorders are at a higher risk of poor health and wellbeing outcomes, including increased prevalence of substance use disorders such as harmful dependence on alcohol or other drugs.

Mental health treatment plans are an important tool that can help to guide treatment and empower people to take steps to improve their mental health.

Policy Context

The data in this indicator shows a year-on-year increase in the number of GP appointments attended by ACT children and young people for mental health treatment plans. This is important because, while the data does not reveal the number of unique mental health treatment plans in the ACT, it does show an increased demand for appointments concerning mental health treatment plans.

ACT Health works closely with the ACT's Primary Health Network and Capital Health Network (CHN) to promote access to appropriate mental health treatment and care for ACT children and adolescents.

ACT Health is working to expand the number of bulk billed health services in the ACT. The Bulk Billing General Practices Grant offers funding to general practitioners, psychologists and other allied health professionals to boost their bulk billing services. The intention is to increase accessibility to health services, especially for families experiencing disadvantage.

As examples of this commitment, ACT Health continues to invest in child and adolescent mental health services and Headspace*, and is also collaborating with the CHN to develop a Regional Mental Health Plan. These initiatives will have a key role in ensuring effective access and integration of mental health services across the system. This integration is an important outcome for ensuring people have access to the right treatment, in the right place and at the right time for them across the mental health system in the ACT. The Office for Mental Health and Wellbeing will play an important role in achieving cross sectoral collaboration and service integration to promote mental health and wellbeing in the ACT.

* The ACT Budget 2018-19, committed an extra $1.3 million to further fund Headspace over the next three financial years. The funding will increase Headspace's ability to offer additional initial assessments and reduced wait times. Initial assessments are important for the triaging of young people who present to headspace with mental health treatment plans.

How is the ACT Progressing?

Table 9: Number of ACT GP Mental Health Treatment Plan appointments for ACT children and young people aged 0-24 years, 2014-17

 

2014

2015

2016

2017

0-4 years

77

107

82

126

5-14 years

1,921

2,080

2,530

2,700

15-24 years

7,484

8,236

9,047

10,151

Total

9,482

10,423

11,659

12,977

Source: MBS online. Item numbers 2700, 2701, 2712, 2713, 2715 and 2717.

Table 10: Breakdown number of ACT GP Mental Health Treatment Plan appointments for ACT children and young people aged 0-24 years by appointment type, 2016

 

Lasting at least 20 mins or more than 40 mins

Treatment consultation under a mental health plan

Appointments for a review of a mental health plan

Total in age group

0-4 years

64

14

4

82

5-14 years

1,707

453

370

2,530

15-24 years

3,990

3,800

1,257

9,047

Total

5,761

4,267

1,631

11,659

Source: MBS online. Item numbers 2700, 2701, 2712, 2713, 2715 and 2717.

Note The number of appointments, lasting at least 20 minutes or more than 40 minutes, to prepare a GP Mental Health Treatment Plan with medical practitioners either with mental health skills training (items 2715 and 2717) or without this training (items 2700 and 2701). The number of appointments for treatment consultation under a mental health plan (item 2713) or a review of a mental health plan (item 2712). The breakdown of appointments by item number for only 2016 and 2017 are included in this report as they are new data from the 2016 A Picture publication which reported data from 2014 and 2015.

Table 11: Breakdown number of ACT GP Mental Health Treatment Plan appointments for ACT children and young people aged 0-24 years by appointment type, 2017

 

Lasting at least 20 mins or more than 40 mins

Treatment consultation under a mental health plan

Appointments for a review of a mental health plan

Total in age group

0-4 years

103

22

1

126

5-14 years

1,825

512

363

2,700

15-24 years

4,265

4,398

1,488

10,151

Total

6,193

4,932

1,852

12,977

Source: MBS online. Item numbers 2700, 2701, 2712, 2713, 2715 and 2717.

Note The number of appointments, lasting at least 20 minutes or more than 40 minutes, to prepare a GP Mental Health Treatment Plan with medical practitioners either with mental health skills training (items 2715 and 2717) or without this training (items 2700 and 2701). The number of appointments for treatment consultation under a mental health plan (item 2713) or a review of a mental health plan (item 2712).

Overall, the number of GP appointments concerning the development, management or review of mental health treatment plans for children and young people in the ACT has risen over this reporting period. This is also true of the data in the previous A Picture of ACT's Children and Young People 2016 report, which saw a total of 9,482 appointments in 2014 and 10,423 appointments in 2015.

However, there is no data available, either from the MBS or from the AIHW, which counts the total number of mental health treatment plans for children and young people in the ACT. Without this information, it is difficult to infer whether an increased number of mental health treatment plans are being developed, following attendance at these appointments, or whether children and young people in the ACT with existing treatment plans are having more GP consultations about their plans than in previous years.

As a result, while the number of GP appointments concerning mental health treatment plans for young people in the ACT is rising, it is difficult to comment on whether performance indicators around mental health treatment plans are improving or not.