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Has the ACT’s MH Act actually improved things for consumers and carers?

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Room 8, 2nd Floor

The Griffin Centre

20 Genge Street

Canberra City, ACT 2601

Australia

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PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS IS A LUNCHTIME FORUM, NOT AN EVENING ONE.

The ACT's 'Mental Health Act, 2015' was a largely welcomed reform that aimed to maximise the involvement of people who experience a mental illness or mental disorder in their own treatment, care and support. In particular, it seeks to support people to make their own decisions.

The Act applies to all people in the ACT who experience a mental illness or mental disorder, as well as their family, carers and significant others. It also instructs professionals, such as mental health workers, ambulance and police officers, in terms of their requirements and responsibilities in providing care, treatment and support.

Mental health carers (usually, but not always a family member) were particularly interested in the provisions of the Act that were designed to give carers access to more information to help them care, such as diagnosis, treatment details etc., and to be consulted about proposed treatment. Under the previous Act, these and other matters related to the consumer were considered 'confidential', and carers were left in the dark.

This Forum will explore the degree to which the Act has actually changed the way that decisions are made - are consumers having a greater say in their treatment now? - and the degree to which carers are consulted as a result of the Act. These and other aspects of the Act will be discussed.

Panel: Helen Connolly (ADACAS), Jenny Adams (ACT Mental Health Consumer Network), Bruno Aloisi (ACT Health) and at least one mental health carer.

These Quarterly Forums are jointly organised by the Mental Health Community Coalition of the ACT, Carers ACT, and the ACT Mental Health Consumers Network.

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Room 8, 2nd Floor

The Griffin Centre

20 Genge Street

Canberra City, ACT 2601

Australia

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