Member Spotlight: Innovative model of care for mental health patients

iMH/Aurora Healthcare share the benefits of their Mental Health Model and the opening of their brand-new hospital in Canberra.

1. Tell us about iMH/ Aurora Health Australia.

In March 2023 Aurora Healthcare and Medibank Private launched iMHs’ first flagship private mental health hospital, Deakin Private Hospital. The iMH model is focused on preventing avoidable hospital admissions and readmissions while supporting the patients’ recovery in the longer term through a range of innovative community-based services which can be tailored to the patient’s needs.

This innovative model of care aims to ensure that patients receive the right level of care, at the right time, in the most comfortable setting possible for their recovery.


2. What is special about Deakin Private Hospital in Canberra?

Deakin Private Hospital is a purpose built 52-bed facility providing innovative mental health services to the Canberra community. It proudly provides treatment for patients across the age spectrum from adolescents to older persons, including Canberra’s first dedicated adolescent and young adult unit.

The hospital was designed to include the philosophies of identity, nature, active body and mind, independence, connectedness and peace. Our spaces help ease the transition into the care environment, embrace nature, foster independence and create connections. Our beautifully landscaped grounds encourage both active and passive activities, including a gymnasium and a colourful half-basketball court in our adolescent unit. There are educational and therapy sessions daily for the patients to attend, including a focus on healthy lifestyle and diversional therapies.

With a team of psychiatrists, medical, nursing, and allied health professionals who can provide a wide range of treatments across inpatient, outpatient and community care through flexible care pathways.

3. As a new Mental Health model, what benefits do you envisage?

The flexible care pathways will enable tailored treatment journeys, where the care setting can be adjusted during the admission to facilitate treatment delivery in the setting best suited to patient recovery and treatment progress.

The clinical model will enable patients to maintain their connection to their everyday life as far as possible during their admission and treatment, in addition, to a continuity of care across hospital and community settings.

4. What is the Integrated Mental Health (imh) Model? How is it different?

The iMH model provides additional services that are typically not provided under a traditional mental health model of care in the private sector. With flexible care pathways, the treating team determines whether the patient’s treatment needs, and therapeutic goals are best met with inpatient hospital treatment involving overnight care, intensive day hospital attendance, or as a patient who receives care in their home.

Patients can transition from one care pathway to another based on their individual care requirements. We believe that the model puts patients and their psychiatrists in the driving seat as to how their care is best delivered.

The iMH model offers choice and flexibility with wrap around services that can be accessed at any point in the patient’s recovery.

5. Do you have any advice for newly established organisations going through NSQHSS Interim assessment?

There are great resources available on the Commissions website to assist new organisations and services with preparing for interim accreditation.
Having regular contact with your ACHS Customer Services Manager to keep them briefed in there are changes to your opening date and for assisting with questions that may arise during the process is a great resource to utilise.

Having a robust governance and risk management framework developed to support the hospital.

And finally, ensuring that your workforce is educated on the NSQHS and how these apply to their roles and responsibilities is critical.

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