Australian Rural and Remote Mental Health Symposium

2016 Rural and Remote Mental Health Symposium

There has never been a more exciting time to be involved in rural and remote mental health. Since our last symposium: 5 states and territories have released their mental health plans/strategies, the Commonwealth has committed to integrated care, local solutions and regional autonomy, the National Mental Health Commission has led the development of the National Consensus Statement on the physical health of people living with mental illness, and the Fifth National Mental Health Plan has been released for consultation.

Across all of these national, state and local directions some consistent themes emerge:

  • The imperative for integration at the local level
  • The expansion of consumer, carer and peer sectors
  • The need to grow and support the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander workforce
  • The growth of the community managed sector, and
  • The key role of Primary Health Networks in coordinating local mental health care.

Our symposium theme of “Working Together, Integrating Care” captures all of these elements and our symposium offers a unique opportunity to learn about exciting new initiatives, to discuss challenges, and to workshop solutions in rural and remote mental health.

This year we have some stellar leaders in Australian mental health presenting and sharing the latest developments in rural service provision and research. We have also changed the format of our workshops to focus on some of the key enablers of service excellence – integration, consumer participation, physical health and suicide prevention.

This year’s symposium promises to be our best ever, it provides opportunities to learn, discuss, workshop and network with others who share a passion for rural and remote mental health.

On behalf of the Committee we look forward to meeting you at the Mantra on Salt Beach Hotel in beautiful Kingscliff.



Dr Russell Roberts
Associate Professor in Leadership and Management, Charles Sturt University

The 2016 Rural and Remote Mental Health Symposium will be held at Mantra on Salt Beach**, Kingscliff, NSW from 3 – 4 November 2016. An optional half day of workshops will be held on Wednesday 2 November 2016.

**Mantra on Salt Beach is less than 15 minutes from Gold Coast Airport, 30 minutes’ drive from Byron Bay and 90 minutes from Brisbane.

Program Format

The program is intended to provide all participants with an opportunity to contribute and learn.

The program will include:

  • Keynote plenary sessions
  • Presenter concurrent streams based on experiences, research, case studies and results
  • Panel discussions
  • Workshops (optional)
  • Networking function
  • Symposium dinner
  • Poster presentations
  • Exhibition of the leading industry professionals
  • Access to presenter podcasts and book of proceedings following the conference

Opening Address

Keynotes 2016

  • Mr David Butt, Chief Executive Officer, National Rural Health Alliance, (Immediate past Chief Executive of the National Mental Health Commission)
  • Scientia Professor Helen Christensen, Director & Chief Scientist, Black Dog Institute, Chair, Centre of Research Excellence in Suicide Prevention
  • Professor Jane Farmer, Research Professor of Health & Social Innovation, Deputy Director, Centre for Social Impact, Swinburne University, Melbourne
  • Ms Alison Fairleigh, Area Manager, Mental Illness Fellowship NQ Inc
  • Mr David McGrath, Principal, David McGrath Consulting
  • Ms Susan Moylan-Coombs, Founder and Director, The Gaimaragal Group
  • Dr Vahid Saberi, Chief Executive Officer; North Coast PHN, Adjunct Professor, School of Health & Human Science, Southern Cross University, Senior Research Fellow, Sydney University
  • Professor Nick Titov, Professorial Fellow, Project Director, MindSpot Clinic, Macquarie University
  • Associate Professor Philip Ward, Associate Professor, School of Psychiatry, University of NSW

Sponsors & Exhibitors 2016

MindSpot freudiancouch aacbt
cranaplus-bush-support-services acthealth act-health-and-geneva-healthcare_logo-2
emhprac  nan-tien-institute-nti  national-disability-coordination-officer-program
quest-for-life-foundation turning-point wayahead-mental-health-association
the-sanctuary-byron-bay  alcoholics-anonymous


Who Should Attend

  • Workers in the provision of rural and remote mental health services
  • Social Workers
  • Mental Health Nurses
  • Aboriginal Health Workers
  • Allied Health Professionals
  • Psychologists
  • Psychiatrists
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Public and Private Health Services
  • Private Practitioners
  • Counsellors
  • General Practitioners
  • Academics
  • Researchers
  • Clinicians
  • Rehabilitation Consultants
  • Health Professionals
  • Carers
  • Consumers
  • Non-Government Organisations
  • Commonwealth Government
  • Community Representatives
  • Educational Institutions
  • Local/State/Governments
  • Policy Makers

What you will gain from the Symposium

  • Be exposed to new and innovating ideas and ways of thinking
  • Network with your peers and leaders in their fields
  • Be inspired
    • by an optimistic, action orientated group of people
    • by profound and positive speakers
  • Learn key skills needed for ensuring the future
  • Learn how to make a positive difference

The 8th Australian Rural & Remote Mental Health Symposium is an initiative of The Australian & New Zealand Mental Health Association, a ‘not-for-profit’ organisation.


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