Head to Health
Not feeling like yourself lately? You’re not alone. It’s something most people experience at some point. And there are simple things you can do that can help.
Head to Health is a great place to start and come back to for support with your mental health and wellbeing.
Anyone in need of free mental health advice and support can reach out to Head to Health. Call 1800 595 212 to speak to the Head to Health team.
The Head to Health website is free, available 24/7, easy to access and will connect people to mental health programs and services that best suit their needs.
Head to Health is a free confidential service from the Australian Government. It connects you with the help and support you need to keep mentally healthy.
In the North Western Melbourne Primary Health Network (NWMPHN) region there are also 3 Head to Health hubs where people can access multidisciplinary support for their mental health. NWMPHN commissions these hubs and also operates the 1800 telephone intake service.
- Head to Health is not a crisis service and patients requiring immediate care or crisis intervention should be managed through the local mental health triage or 000 if there are immediate safety concerns.
- GPs and other referrers can also contact the NWMPHN referral and access team directly to speak with our experienced mental health clinicians.
Head to Health hubs are open at many locations across Victoria. The 3 hubs in our region are:
- Broadmeadows – DPV Health
42/48 Coleraine Street, Broadmeadows
- Brunswick East – Clarity Healthcare
3/55 Nicholson Street, Brunswick East
- Wyndham Vale – IPC Health
510 Ballan Road, Wyndham Vale
Watch our Head to Health videos to learn more
For providers, GPs and other referrers
Who is it for?
The service supports Victorians of any age experiencing distress or mental ill health, as well as their families. This includes:
- people who have never accessed mental health services before, and their family and friends
- people in aged care, their family and friends
- those ineligible for Medicare, including refugees, people seeking asylum, international students, those with culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
How does it work with my existing mental health patients and CAREinMIND?
You can still refer eligible patients to CAREinMIND™ and you don’t have to change how you refer patients to CAREinMIND.
The Head to Health intake team may refer eligible patients to CAREinMIND services and other existing services, including those in the NWMPHN System of Care.
Head to Health intake staff will ensure there is no duplication in your patient’s treatment and services with existing providers.
How to access Head to Health
GPs and other health professionals can refer patients to Head to Health. No referral or mental health plan is needed in the first instance.
We ask that you do a friendly transfer to the Head to Health service using the 1800 595 212 intake number.
People can either call Head to Health on 1800 595 212, or go directly to a local hub – although calling the intake number first is strongly preferred.
Access to hubs will not be restricted by the location of the person.
Where are the hubs?
Head to Health services are available in many locations across Victoria. Three of them are in North Western Melbourne Primary Health Network’s region in Wyndham Vale, Brunswick East and Broadmeadows.
Head to Health is not a crisis service. Services currently operate from 8:30am to 5:00pm, Monday to Friday.
If all intake team members are engaged, callers during business hours can leave a message to be called back. After-hours callers will hear a recorded message providing the Beyond Blue number for immediate help. The message also invites callers to call back during Head to Health opening hours.
What to expect
When you call Head to Health, an experienced mental health professional will work with you, or your patient, to assess their needs and connect them with the most appropriate services, which may include the new mental health hubs or existing services.
In most cases, people will be connected to an existing service, online mental health support service or other community mental health services.
In all cases people will be strongly encouraged to connect with their regular GP or will be helped to find a GP.
People may also be connected to aligned services such as alcohol and other drugs services, family violence services and specialist and support services.
In all cases, people will be strongly encouraged to connect with their regular GP, or will be helped to find a GP.
Intake and assessment
Intake and assessment will be performed by Head to Health team members on the 1800 595 212 line or direct at a hub.
Team members will use the Initial Assessment and Referral Decision Support Tool and the Initial Assessment Domains tool to perform intake and inform the level of care required. People with level 1 and 2 needs will be connected with existing lower intensity services. Those with level 3 and 4 needs may receive care at the hubs, either onsite or through telehealth, or other more suitable services. Level 5 will be connected to specialist or acute mental health services, including into emergency care or into an area mental health triage.
Hub services and staff
If there is no appropriate service for a person, the hub can provide telehealth and onsite mental health support through multidisciplinary teams. We are expecting to focus on people with level 3 and 4 needs as determined by the Initial Assessment and Referral Decision Support Tool (see above).
The Head to Health hubs include multidisciplinary teams of mental health workers, including psychologists, mental health nurses, social workers, and alcohol and other drugs workers, who coordinate with the patient’s regular GP – or help them find a regular GP. Most hubs do not have a psychiatrist on-staff, as this is not supported by the funding model.
A team-based approach
We encourage the use of shared care plans, and you will be informed of the outcomes of all your referrals. If your patient needs a mental health treatment plan to access other mental health services, a Head to Health team member will be in contact with you.