GP psychiatry support line

The GP Psychiatry Support Line is a free service for GPs aimed at helping them manage the care of their mental health consumers which launched this year in July.

Dr Martin Cohen, Senior Consulting Psychiatrist at ProCare, the service provider for the line, has been fielding queries on phenomenology, diagnosis, and issues relating to safety. Dr Cohen says that the GPs he has advised are finding the service tremendously useful. 

“Many GPs normally have a three to six month wait to see a psychiatrist. The support line has helped many GPs get treatment underway far more efficiently and effectively.”

GPs have expressed their opinions regarding the support line. One GP from Sydney North PHN catchment stated, "Fantastic service - highly beneficial for timely management of more complex patients."  Another GP from Western NSW catchment has said, “Great service to support GPs with clinical queries, especially when we have patients who refuse to seek mental health assessment. Thankful for the availability of such a service."

In addition to Dr Cohen, the current pool of psychiatrists servicing the line includes Dr David Burton, Dr Narayani Nair, Professor Sadanand Rajkumar and Dr Vineetha Edirisooriya. Guided by the principles of stepped care, the psychiatrists see the importance of supporting GPs so that mental health consumers are attended to in primary care. Ultimately, this helps reduce demand in the public system and acute care.

In the first six to eight weeks of operation, there have been close to 500 registrations and growing enthusiasm for the GP Psychiatry Support Line.

To register for this free service, visit and follow the links. For any further enquiries, call 1800 16 17 18.

This service is supported by joint funding from Central and Eastern Sydney PHN, COORDINARE – South Eastern NSW PHN, Hunter New England and Central Coast PHN, Murrumbidgee PHN, Northern Sydney PHN and Western NSW PHN. through the Australian Government’s PHN Program.


As part of the aim to help GPs manage the care of mental health consumers, the GP Psychiatry Support Line are producing a series of online resources. Headed by renowned psychiatrist Dr Martin Cohen, these videos invite psychiatrists to present a topic they specialise in, followed by Q/A.

In the first of the series, topics include Adult ADHD; Bipolar Disorder; Gender Dysphoria,

Guest Psychiatrist: Dr David Burton (MBBS; FRANZCP)

Please go to for more information.

This activity is eligible for RACGP CPD points (Category 2), with participation by watching the video and completing the short quiz.

This educational material complements the GP Psychiatry Support Line, which gives you direct access to a psychiatrist for your specific questions, for free.  Remember to REGISTER at and call 1800 16 17 18 for your enquiries.  By registering, you will also be the first to access the second video of the series, due in the second week of February. 


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