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What is Aftercare?

Aftercare is a free support service for people who have recently attempted suicide.

The level of support is based on each person’s needs. They will work with the invidual for up to three months to:

  • support the recovery process
  • provide encouragement and coaching support
  • develop a personalised safety plan
  • refer and connect them to clinical and community support services
  • help them make, keep and attend appointments
  • provide access to formal and informal support that promotes recovery.

Once referred, they may also be able to get help with:

  • housing support
  • job-related and financial support
  • social and relationship counselling.

The Aftercare program was developed by Beyond Blue and is called The Way Back Support Service. Referrals to The Way Back Support Service are made through hospitals or other health professionals. 

If you are in suicidal crisis, please contact the 24-hour Mental Health Line 1800 011 511 or call 000 for emergencies.

About the Aftercare initiative

The Aftercare initiative is funded by both the NSW Government and Commonwealth Government, enabling the expansion and enhancement of aftercare services across NSW.  

The goal is to enhance the aftercare service provided to people who are discharged from hospital following a suicide attempt. It recognises that the relative risk for suicide after attempted suicide is between 20 to 40 times higher than in the general population.

An evaluation of the Hunter New England Aftercare service - conducted by a consortium of Calvary Mater Hospital, the University of Newcastle, Hunter Primary Care and Everymind - found that 97 per cent of people in the program reported positive progress on their recovery plan.

Psychological distress scores dropped, on average, from severe to mild, and people reported less concern about the issues contributing to their attempt.

The Aftercare program was developed by Beyond Blue and is called The Way Back Support Service. The program was built on personal connection and integrates with local community services. It helps develop skills for managing mental health, such as recognising risk factors and enacting safety plans, while also covering other aspects of health and wellbeing.

The Way Back Support Service is available at the following NSW locations:

  • Broken Hill
  • Concord/Canterbury
  • Gosford/Wyong
  • Murrumbidgee
  • Newcastle
  • Northern Sydney
  • South Western Sydney
  • Sutherland/St George
  • Tweed/Lismore/Grafton
  • Western Sydney

If you are a service provider seeking information please contact us.

Current as at: Thursday 28 October 2021
Contact page owner: Mental Health Branch