The Mental Health Branch has a major strategic role with local health districts and specialty networks in developing policy on partnerships with government, non-government organisations (NGOs) and other relevant stakeholders. This includes improving services for people with mental health issues, engaging the government and NGO sector, optimising government and NGO contribution, and evaluating outcomes.​​​​​​

Working with NGOs

NSW Health is reforming the way in which it works with and funds the non-Government sector to deliver health and related services to people and communities across NSW through the development of Partnerships for Health. Read more about the aim of the reforms and the key program milestones.

Rural partnerships

Centre for Rural and Remote Mental Health (CRRMH)

The Centre for Rural and Remote Mental Health (CRRMH) is a major initiative of NSW Health, the University of Newcastle and Greater Western Area Health Service. It aims to improve the mental health of people living in rural NSW through academic leadership, research, education, service development and information services.
The CRRMH facilitates a range of service development projects that enable improved response to people experiencing a mental illness, including:
  • the development of a Rural Mental Health Emergency and Critical Care Plan
  • the Mental Health Emergency Care Learning and Development Program
  • the Farm-Link and the Drought and Climate Change Mental Health Assistance Programs, aimed at improving pathways to care for people in rural communities. 

The Rural Mental Health Emergency and Critical Care Access Plan

The Rural Mental Health Emergency and Critical Care Access Plan provides a framework for the development of emergency mental health services tailored to specific rural and remote conditions: distance, population distribution, workforce and available hospital services, and identifies the resource requirements to meet those needs.

The plan assists rural areas to develop an implementation plan based on networking of services from regional bases to promote:

  • improved safety of transport
  • increased access to specialist mental health advice and support to more remote facilities
  • training of health staff in rural mental health emergencies
  • the appropriateness of services to the level of patient need and environment
  • mainstreaming of mental health emergency care.

Partnerships with government departments

Memorandum of Understanding between NSW Health (including NSW Ambulance) and NSW Police Force 2018

NSW Health (including NSW Ambulance) and the NSW Police Force have agreed on a revised Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) setting out how they will work together when responding to and delivering care and treatment to people accessing these services.
The high-level guiding principles put the wellbeing and safety of the person at the centre of decision-making. It provides a framework that focusses on interagency cooperation to deliver care to patients in a safe environment.
The MOU has been broadened beyond people in a mental health emergency – and now includes a section on situations involving patients in police custody and a section on the management of public safety issues in health settings.

Partnerships with interstate government departments

A number of agreements between NSW and other States have been developed to allow the cross-border transfer of persons covered by mental health legislation. Find out more about Interstate Transfer Agreements for Forensic and Civil Patients.

Current as at: Thursday 25 October 2018
Contact page owner: Mental Health Branch