Community information

What is mental health?


Mental health is an important and essential component of health. The World Health Organisation (WHO) states that "Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity."

Mental health is about wellness rather than illness.

Mental health reflects our sense of wellbeing. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, make choices, work productively and contribute to community. Mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence through adulthood and older age.

Below are a mix of resources where you can get up to date information regarding mental health services including self-help strategies, on-line mental health resources, telephone and/or face-to-face services.



Online and self-help supports services


Talking to your GP about mental health.

Mental ill health can have a negative impact on your physical health, just as a having a physical health problem can affect your mental health.

GPs are there to help you with any problem related to your mental health as well as physical health. You can go to them if you feel sad after a relative has passed away, if the pressures of life are making you unhappy and anxious, or if you feel angry or confused. GPs don't just prescribe medicines for mental health conditions. They can also help you to access talking therapies and point you towards specialist help.

Some face-to-face services are subsidised by Medicare. If you and your GP think you would benefit from accessing this type of service, your GP will prepare a Mental Health Treatment Plan and make a referral to an appropriately qualified provider.



What is the Mental Health Treatment Plan?


A mental health treatment plan is a tool used by your doctor to work with you in getting the right

Mental health service. The plan helps you discuss with your doctor the focus and aim in achieving what you want and need in your mental health care.

The doctor’s assessment will include taking relevant history, including your present experience of distress, assess any risk, prepare a crisis plan and complete a form known as outcome measuring tool which is a series of questions on how you are feeling. Your needs, goals and actions are then documented with your consent and a referral is made to the appropriate mental health support services. A follow up date is made to discuss the progress of your treatment.


How to access mental health services in your region?


CESPHN supports a range of mental health services within the Central and Eastern Sydney region.

The attached pdf community guide (1.15 MB)  represents services currently funded by CESPHN including those accessible through health professional referral and self-referral. All services funded by CESPHN are free to access.