Head to Health: Australia’s New Digital Mental Health Gateway

The 2018 Australian Rural & Remote Mental Health Symposium will be held this month over 15-17 October at the Hotel Grand Chancellor, Hobart, Tasmania.

Joining us at the conference is Ms Heidi Sturk, Deputy Director eMHPrac at the Queensland University of Technology who will present on Head to Health: Australia’s New Digital Mental Health Gateway’.

Abstract

Introduction:
Head to Health is a digital mental health gateway launched by the Australian Government in October 2017(headtohealth.gov.au). It links Australians to online and phone mental health services appropriate for their individual needs. Services and resources listed on Head to Health are delivered by trusted mental health service providers. They include free or low-cost apps, online support communities, online courses and phone services that are private and secure. Head to Health is not only helpful when seeking support for a mental health condition, it also provides information about staying mentally well.

Methods:
Head to Health was developed in collaboration with the community, the mental health sector and the Department of Health. E-Mental Health in Practice (eMHPrac) is a government-funded project which aims to increase practitioner awareness and use of digital mental health. eMHPrac has been promoting Head to Health as part of their national promotion and training work.

Results:
Head to Health currently has over 370 digital mental health resources from Government funded organisations. These resources are from trusted organisations to ensure both health providers and people with mental health needs and their carers have access to the best information online. This presentation will demonstrate the site and explain useful features. It will also present details of promotion activities, usage figures since the launch and feedback from training participants and site surveys.

Conclusion:
The availability and diversity of digital mental health is continuing to grow and has an important role within our mental health service provision model. The establishment of a gateway is a significant step which allows Australians to have quick and easy access to online and phone based mental health support. The website will continue to evolve based on user feedback and website analytics.

Key Learnings:
1. Knowledge about the new digital mental health gateway.
2. Understanding of how to use the gateway.
3. Awareness of online mental health programs and apps.

Biography

Heidi has a Masters in Organisational Psychology and has over 20 years’ experience in the mental health field. She is currently the Deputy Director of eMHPrac (e-Mental Health in Practice). This federally funded project provides training and support on digital mental health resources to Allied Health Practitioners, General Practitioners and service providers working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

For more information on the upcoming 2018 Australian Rural & Remote Mental Health Symposium please visit anzmh.asn.au/rrmh