Australia’s first free national online mental health clinic launched

3 May 2013

Parliamentary Secretary for Mental Health, Melissa Parke today officially launched MindSpot, Australia’s first free online and telephone mental health clinic.

The project has been developed by a team of national and international experts led by researchers from Macquarie University and Access Macquarie Limited – the University’s commercial company, and is in partnership with the Federal Government.

The initiative is part of the Australian Government’s mental health reform package to improve access and expand mental health services in remote areas across Australia. It provides confidential assistance to people nationally via the Internet, phone or email.

“MindSpot allows people from all over Australia to access quality mental health care. It provides a powerful complement to traditional face-to-face services,” says MindSpot Project Director, Associate Professor Nick Titov.

“Our online services complement face-to-face mental health support and the existing automated online Teleweb programs, which are available through the online mental health portal, mindhealthconnect,” says Titov.

Minister for Mental Health, Mark Butler, and Ms Parke hailed MindSpot as a great innovation that will make a real difference to the lives of around 38,000 people over the next three years.

“Already, MindSpot has hosted more than 20,000 unique visitors, assessed more than 1300 people, and commenced treatment on more than 450 patients,” Ms Parke said.

“MindSpot won’t just be a one-size-fits-all service; it will carefully assess each client so they receive the right care for their needs.”

Mr Butler said many Australians with mental illness have difficulty accessing the treatment they need due to social or geographical isolation and the stigma associated with mental illness.

“MindSpot will help many Australians take their first steps toward improving their mental health,” Mr Butler said.

The Australian Government has invested $16.4 million over three years in MindSpot. It will be delivered by Macquarie University through Access Macquarie Limited.

About MindSpot Clinic

The MindSpot Clinic is a free telephone and online service for Australians with stress, worry, anxiety, low mood or depression. We provide mental health screening assessments, therapist-guided treatment courses and referrals to help people recover and stay well. The online clinic delivers research-based treatment and operates 7 days a week. www.mindspot.org.au

Filed under: Health & medicine Research