Creating a healthier, better connected Gippsland.

Event marks milestone in transforming the mental health sector

Two Gippsland Primary Health Network staff were among the 160 guests at the Realising Reform: Growing the Lived & Living Experience Workforce breakfast event addressed by Victorian Minister for mental Health, Ingrid Stitt.

The event, run by Mental Health Victoria, marked the three-year milestone in transforming the mental health sector following the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System.

Project Officer Mental Health Reform – Lived Experience, Jess Edwards (pictured right) and Project Coordinator Mental Health Reform, Jacoba Henning, described the face-to-face event as inspiring and thought-provoking.

The Minister outlined the journey since the delivery of the final report of the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System (RCVMHS) three years ago. She reaffirmed the Victorian Government’s commitment to implementing the report’s recommendations and made special note of several mental health service providers working to create more sustainable ways of providing care.

A highlight was a panel discussion from panellists – Executive Director Lived Experience, Mind Australia, Katie Larsen; Director Lived Experience, Alfred Health, Rebecca Langman; Alfred Mental and Addiction Health Program Director and Director, Mental Health Victoria, Associate Professor Simon Stafrace; and Chair, Gippsland Mental Health and Wellbeing Interim Regional Body, Kellie O’Callaghan.

The panel reflected on the changes to date and discussed the work still to be done in sector reform. It also highlighted the need for Lived/Living Expertise to be embedded within organisations at all levels, including leadership and governance.

Gippsland PHN has made a commitment to grow the Lived Experience workforce in the region and is one of only five Australian Primary Health Networks to have a dedicated Lived Experience role on staff.

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