Accessible information to navigate a complex service system: Gippsland Mental Health Services Directory

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Larter conducted service mapping and gap analysis to develop an online navigation tool to assist Gippsland health professionals navigate the mental health system.

Client:  Gippsland Primary Health Network is a federally funded primary health care organisation with a focus on supporting general practice, health planning, health system integration and commissioning services in line with national and local health priorities.

Gippsland PHN key objectives are to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of medical services for patients, particularly those at risk of poor health outcomes, and to improve coordination of care to ensure patients receive the right care, in the right place, at the right time.

Challenge: Gippsland stakeholders had reported that the region’s mental health service system was overwhelmingly complicated and difficult to navigate, resulting in poor service coordination and access for people impacted by mental illness.

Gippsland PHN commissioned Larter to conduct the Mental Health Linkages project comprising:

  • service mapping and gap analysis to identify the capacities and gaps within the mental health service delivery system in the region and recommend how to improve care pathways and linkages across the system
  • a resource to assist health practitioners to navigate the multiple services needed by people impacted by mental illness.

Response: From December 2014 to June 2015, Larter employed multiple methods to map and analyse Gippsland’s mental health and support service system including service data collection and analysis, desktop research, document review and interviewing 30 mental health service system informants. Two Gippsland Medicare Local stakeholder consultations were also considered in the review.

Using the data collected through the mapping exercise, Larter partnered with an experienced web portal developer, Melbourne-based Paradigm Media, to create a simple, accessible and reliable online referral resource for the region – the Gippsland Mental Health Services Directory.

Outcome: The service system gaps and challenges identified through the Mental Health System Linkages project review positions GPHN, with its primary care system mandate, to develop future strategies that facilitate a more connected mental health system in the region.

The Gippsland Mental Health Service Directory ties together the various pathways to mental health and other services that support Gippsland people impacted by mental illness and increases the accessibility of the mental health system to a wide range of health and community support professionals.

Contact us to explore how we can help make your service system easier to navigate.


Image: Flickr Creative Commons  Some rights reserved by marfis75