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Specialist transition unit to open in New South Wales

The Mental Health Aged Care Partnership Initiative (MHACPI) transition unit, part of NSW Health’s Pathways to Community Living Initiative, will help residents who have complex needs associated with mental illness and/or dementia transition from living in long term acute mental health care services into mainstream residential aged care.  

Art therapy is among the services offered at Charles O’Neill
Art therapy is among the services offered at Charles O’Neill

Anne Maree Hodgson, Catholic Healthcare general manager Residential Care says the expected length of stay for a resident in a MHACPI transition unit is approximately 250 days.

“Throughout this period they will be provided with appropriate accommodation, care and support, with the focus on enabling them to transition to mainstream residential aged care,” she says.

The new ‘home like’ purpose-designed 10 person specialist unit will be the second Catholic Healthcare operated MHACPI transition unit in NSW; its first transition unit has been operating for the past 12 years within Holy Spirit aged care service in Croydon.

Catholic Healthcare will shortly sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Hunter New England Local Health District (HNELHD) mental health service to support the effective operation of the new unit. Under this agreement the HNELHD mental health service will be responsible for providing specialist psychiatric support, consultation, liaison and treatment advice for residents, working in collaboration with general practitioners and allied health professionals to ensure the physical and holistic health care of the resident is maintained.

As well as the MHACPI transition unit, Catholic Healthcare also plans to expand Charles O’Neill Hostel to accommodate an additional 40 residents in the future.

The MHACPI transition unit is expected to be opened and operational in February 2017.

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