Karen Thomas, Queensland  State Manager
Karen Thomas
Queensland State Manager
We are excited by opportunities to demonstrate our strengths and to provide high-quality services.

Having had a long-term but modest footprint in Queensland, we are thrilled to open four new services in the last year, with more to come in late 2018.

Our new intake, assessment, triage and referral service, Connect to Wellbeing generated much of the activity. By building a strong relationship with the Northern Queensland PHN, we have been able to work quickly and design a service targeted to local needs. Getting out and speaking with GPs and community health services has been critical to helping streamline access to mental health services across northern Queensland. With support from the Northern Queensland PHN, we have worked rapidly and iteratively to refine the approach to connect people to the right support, and work through significant waiting lists. Having the resources of a national organisation has been instrumental in resourcing the rapid deployment of our new services.

Being able to work quickly and scale our services up and down is a focus for us here in Queensland. As we see some of our longest running services, the Personal Helpers and Mentors (PHaMs) and Partners in Recovery start the transition into NDIS, we know that through our subsidiary, Me Well, we will need to ramp up or slow down our offerings to meet the need in local communities. PHaMs initially brought Neami to Queensland, and we will ensure support is available to consumers and staff through any transition. I am continually impressed with the work and attitude of the Queensland staff. The team’s consistent display of resilience and commitment to consumers is reassuring in these times of disruption.

We continue to work with clinical services in our Recovery and Rehabilitation services and the new Step Up Step Down service in Nundah. As an organisation we have invested in a comprehensive approach to clinical safety and governance that allows us to work successfully in this area. Managing the complexities of collaborating across clinical and community services is an ongoing process and one where we bring considerable skill and experience. We know that working closely with clinical services results in a real reduction in hospital stays for consumers. We draw on our strong staff culture and our values to work constructively in delivering person-centred, recovery-oriented mental health support.

As we seek to broaden the services we offer, we also seek to partner with others who complement our strengths. We know that together we can extend the positive impact our services make in people’s lives. By working in partnership, we ensure the reach and sustainability of services is extended to support people to improve their mental health and wellbeing.

‘We are aware that to make the most impact upon service and system reform we will require extensive partnerships with all sectors, particularly the Not-for-Profit sector as these are by their very definition in business to effect better outcomes for consumers.’
Gillian Yearsley
Director Mental Health, Northern Queensland Primary Health Network
South Australia

We are adding value through rich partnerships and our specialist mental health knowledge.