Women's Mental Health Clinic launch

The  MAPrc Women's Mental Health Clinic was officially opened on Thursday 28 October, 11.30am, by Victoria's Cabinet Secretary and Member for Prahran, Tony Lupton MP. Shadow Minister for Mental Health, Mary Wooldridge, also spoke at the launch.  

Speaking at the launch, MAPrc Director Professor Jayashri Kulkarni said a focus on women’s mental health had always been an important part of the Centre’s work, and the aim of the launch was to draw attention to the gender-specific dimension of many mental health conditions.
“Up until now women suffering from mental illness have not had access to advanced, tailored consultation by professionals with specific expertise in women’s mental health. The medical and mental health field has been somewhat ‘gender blind’ to date, with a one-size-fits all approach to diagnoses and treatments, and this has not been in best interests of female patients,” Professor Kulkarni said.
“This clinic is unique in that consultations and treatments will be informed and shaped by the specific biological, hormonal and gender factors that are often implicated in the symptoms and conditions which women experience.
“We can’t ignore the impact of these factors on women’s mental health and that is why we have created a clinic specific to the needs of women.”
Professor Kulkarni said the clinic would be the ‘go-to’ place for women with unresponsive, complex or undiagnosed mental health conditions, and would offer expert second-opinion and the latest clinical advice and treatment options available.
“With a referral from their GP, women will have access to psychiatrists and psychologists with extensive expertise in women’s mental health.  Consultations include assessment of a patient’s hormonal changes and other reproductive factors, and this information is taken into account in recommending an appropriate treatment plan,” Professor Kulkarni said.
Professor Kulkarni called for greater community awareness of gender-specific aspects to many mental health disorders, including peri-menopausal depression, menstrual cycle related mood disturbances, and psychosis in bipolar affective disorder affecting women. Women are at greater risk of experiencing a first episode of psychosis or relapse of existing illness at periods of major hormonal change, such as the postpartum period and during menopause.


 MAPrc Monash Alfred Psychiatry Research Centre, Level 4, 607 St Kilda Road, Melbourne 3004

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