The Victorian Statewide Problem Gambling and Mental Health Partnership was a winner!


The Victorian Statewide Problem Gambling and Mental Health Partnership was the winner of the Minister for Mental Health’s Award for enabling person and family-centred mental healthcare, 2011 Victorian Public Healthcare Awards.


With funding support from the Victorian Department of Justice, MAPrc in partnership with Alfred Psychiatry and Gambler's Help Southern conducted a screening project in 2006 and 2009 to assess the prevalence of people presenting with problem gambling to the Crisis Assessment and Treatment and Emergency Department Mental Health Triage Services of The Alfred.

An overall prevalence of approximately 17% of screened patients were experiencing problem gambling.

Despite this high level of need, it was recognised that mental health services are often unprepared to effectively respond to the complicating issues of problem gambling. An initial clinical response was trialled, establishing an "After-hours problem gambling crisis service" that was co-located with The Alfred's Crisis Assessment and Treatment Service, to offer a specialist problem gambling and mental health response to people experiencing a crisis in the community.

In 2009, following recognition of the effectiveness of the service, an expansion occurred with the establishment of the Victorian Statewide Problem Gamling and Mental Health Partnership which was launched in April 2010. The Partnership is delivering a Training and Education Program and a Specialist Problem Gambling Mental Health Clinic, that are both available to staff and patients from around Victoria. Significant gains have already been made in improving the support provided to people experiencing mental illness and problem gambling."

The Partnership was built upon a collaborative project involving MAPrc, Alfred Psychiatry and Gambler's Help Southern and auspiced by the Department of Justice, that identified that a significant number of people presenting to crisis mental health services were experiencing problem gambling. The Statewide Service that is now a recognised winner, is providing an improved response for people around Victoria experiencing problem gambling and mental illness"

Professor Jayashri Kulkarni comments “We are especially thrilled as this is a direct example of excellence in clinical translation of the research conducted by MAPrc".

Minister for Health, Hon. David Davis said “I have been greatly impressed by the enthusiasm to overcome challenges and develop improvements that will help to create a dynamic and world-leading healthcare system we can all be proud of”.


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