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headspace Edinburgh North introduces new service model

headspace Edinburgh North introduces new service model to reduce wait times to receive youth mental health services

As a result of high service demand and growing waitlists experienced at headspace Edinburgh North over the past 18 months, the centre has introduced a new model of service delivery known as Single Session Therapy (SST).

SST is an approach to therapy whereby workers make the most out of each encounter by treating each appointment as though it may be the only contact the young person has with the service.

SST is increasingly practiced across a range of service settings. Its growth in popularity stems from evidence that suggests that a large majority of young people attend only one session of counselling and that many find this one encounter sufficient to meet their needs.

The SST approach is appealing to young people as it targets their pre-determined key concerns in a single, solutions-focused appointment. During the appointment, young people work collaboratively with headspace workers to set goals and develop skills for coping  and problem solving. They are also provided with take home resources, as needed.

headspace Edinburgh North is operated by Sonder. At the centre, this new model of service delivery operates under the name Open Door.

The introduction of Open Door at headspace Edinburgh North has already resulted in improved accessibility at the centre. Since the introduction of the Open Door appointments in Dec 2021, headspace Edinburgh North has seen a 90% reduction in the centre’s waitlist and the average time a young person waits to receive an appointment is 4 weeks – down from 9 months in 2021.

Following an Open Door appointment, young people have the option to access additional support by making further Open Door appointments at the centre. They may also choose to access one of the following drop-in services:

  • Check in Space – available every Wednesday from 2 pm – 6 pm at headspace Edinburgh North
  • Sonder’s Walk-in After-hours Mental Health Service for young people aged 16+ available from 5 pm – 9 pm, Monday to Friday at Sonder Edinburgh North.

A young person may also choose to discuss with their worker the option to receive on-going therapy, see a peer worker, or join the centre’s skills-based CBT group, Mind your Mind.

Young people experiencing severe mental illness such as psychosis, borderline personality disorder or bipolar disorder may be referred onto Sonder’s emerge program. emerge is funded by Adelaide Primary Health Network (PHN) and designed as a ‘step-up’ service from headspace for young people who require additional levels of support.

Adelaide PHN’s Mental Health Enquiry Line for GPs is also available on 1300 898 213 and provides information and referral support for local mental health services.

Community members seeking information and referral to mental health services should contact the Head to Health Phone Service on 1800 595 212 for assessment and navigation support.

For more information about this change in our model of service delivery, please email info@sonder.net.au or phone (08) 8209 0700. For more information about headspace Edinburgh North, visit sonder.net.au/headspace

Administration of funding is carried out by the headspace centre’s local Primary Health Network, in this case, Adelaide (Adelaide PHN). headspace services are funded by the Australian Government Department of Health.

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