Monday, March 19, 2012

SANE Australia urging employers to think about better support for staff in workplace.

SANE Australia, a national mental health charity, is urging employers to think about how they can better support their staff at work.

SANE executive director Barbara Hocking said mental illness was common, with one in five Australians affected each year.

“We know that a mentally healthy workplace, that has positive and supportive attitudes to mental illness, is most important in finding and keeping a job.” she said.

“So it’s of great concern to learn that most Australians with a mental illness receive little support or understanding in the workplace.

“It’s also worrying to find out that many people with a mental illness don’t believe their manager has an understanding of mental illness.”

Respondents to a recent SANE Australia survey of working life and mental illness recommended (95 per cent) that employers and managers receive education on mental illness, and how to manage its effects in the workplace... more

13th International Menatl Health Conference - "Positive Change – Investing in Mental Health"

Australia and New Zealand Mental Health Association

Health Economics - The Canadian Debate

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Internet a Vital Connection for People with Mental Illness - Report

Many people with a mental illness are turning to the internet and social media to manage their lives, overcome isolation and stay connected, according to new research by the national mental health charity SANE Australia.

The research surveyed 605 respondents via an anonymous online survey, and found that people with a mental illness are enthusiastic users of the internet and social media to manage their lives and make social connections.

It also found that 93 per cent of the respondents were confident using the internet, and that 95.8 per cent had access to the internet at home.

Executive director of SANE Barbara Hocking said that the majority of people with mental illness in the survey use the internet to manage their finances, shop and engage with government agencies such as Centrelink.

“Importantly, the majority (72.7 per cent) told us that the internet made it easier to maintain existing relationships and to make new ones,” Hocking the full story here

Saturday, March 3, 2012

4th Australian Rural and Remore Mental Health Symposium


The conference will be held in Adelaide from the 16th to the 21st of November 2012.

Our vast country is graced with a diverse population. From indigenous beginnings our population has swollen with the addition of migrants from many countries bringing with them an eclectic mix of individual and collective ethnic, cultural and religious qualities, over many generations.

The settling of regional, rural, and remote areas has provided us with agricultural and mineral resources which are fundamental necessities contributing substantially to our economy. Despite the major contribution to the economy that stems from rural and remote areas, differing state and federal policies have led to a situation whereby rural and remote communities appear to be neglected, as evidenced by their limited access to health services, and in particular mental health services.

Sixteen percent of the population are found in our smaller regional towns and rural and remote communities that spread over approximately 99percent of the continent. With approximately 3-4percent of our population now living and working in rural and remote communities, or in isolated areas, we need to be more aware of their needs and how these needs are best serviced.

People living in remote areas receive 60 percent fewer services

Those in rural areas receive 12 percent fewer, than those in major cities. The large deficit in mental health services for people in rural and remote areas must be recognised and overcome.

A 2007 National Survey showed that around 20 per cent of the population were affected by mental illness in both major cities and rural areas. However, as people in remote areas were not included in this assessment, it could be argued that this percentage could be even higher in those areas. Moreover, people in remote areas received less than half the total number of services for mental health received by those in the Major Cities. (Web-based services were not included in these estimates.) (Source National Rural Health Alliance May 2011).

What about a "fair go" through equity and the provision of adequate resources, particularly in relation to rural and remote mental health services? By putting people first in rural and remote communities, how can we better meet their needs? How well are we currently providing services to meet their needs? What works well, what doesn't, and how can services be improved? What can we work towards in the future to put people and their health, particularly their mental health, first, in rural and remote Australia?

What are the needs of health care workers? 

Visit the website for more information