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"Depression, quality of care"

About: Albany Health Campus / Mental Health Unit

(as the patient),

Very happy with the standard of care provided in the acute mental health ward. Disappointed with how far I had to travel to get that high-quality care.

I knew that my stay on the ward would be difficult, in fact, the hardest thing I've ever done in my life. The last hugs that I had were from the ambo's that dropped me off (patient transfer). 3 weeks without seeing family or friends, you really start to question your self-worth. Things became a little easier once family and friends were able to come down and visit. Tyranny of distance. Home is over 300km from Albany.

Every hospital in the metropolitan area and South West is closer... You really start to question your existence and self-worth when you feel so isolated.

The staff are very professional and helpful. Continuity of care whilst an inpatient is both important and excellent. Peter, Jess, Rylee, Chelsea, Charlotte, Keifee, Lillybelle, Sinu, Silvi, James, Gavin, Jenny, Laura, Ian, Sonia, Christine, Dr Tom, the Psychiatrist's and the rest of the staff are to be highly commended. Thank you.

Testing, reviews and treatment were thorough and timely. I would recommend PGx testing as it can be helpful to guide treatment and medication choices now and into the future.

Some of the OT activities were cancelled or delayed with regularity - functions of weather and COVID. Perhaps a little more thought on alternatives? The plans to upgrade the outside part of the ward look good and I believe need to be actioned. Being able to do more physical activity especially upper bodywork, in my opinion, would be beneficial for patients.

I do have a few recommendations/suggestions to improve patient safety while in the ward. Contact me to discuss these. Thank you. Whilst I hope never to have to go back, I know that should I need to, that I will be well cared for. Thank you.  


Response from Matt Wells, Regional Mental Health Manager, Mental Health Services, WACHS Great Southern 2 weeks ago
Matt Wells
Regional Mental Health Manager, Mental Health Services,
WACHS Great Southern

Manages Great Southern mental health services.

Submitted on 30/03/2021 at 12:37
Published on Care Opinion at 12:43

Dear swingxw95,

Thank you for contacting us via Care Opinion and sharing your experience with us.

It is pleasing to hear that you were very happy with the standard of care provided to you during your stay in the acute mental health ward. We are also very proud of the professional and dedicated staff in the inpatient unit and I will personally ensure the staff you mentioned are recognised. This feedback is wonderful.

I acknowledge the difficulties you must have faced being so far from home and feelings of isolation. That must have been a very difficult period of time for you. I am glad this eased once your family and friends were able to visit. I too hope that in the near future we are able to expand our state wide mental health services to accommodate those living in rural and remote areas.

Thank you for your comments around the OT activities as this is an area we are continuing to work on and we will certainly take on your feedback around providing alternatives. Your suggestion around more physical activity will be raised at the next team meeting and I agree this is beneficial to our patients in many ways. Unfortunately, as you mentioned some days the weather disrupts our outdoors plans and COVID disrupted many of our group activities, however, we are slowly bringing them back into the unit. Yes there is a redesign of the outdoor area in the pipe line and we are confident this will provide consumers with more outdoor space for activities.

I would value hearing your recommendations and suggestions around patient safety. As the Regional Manager of the Mental Health Service, patient safety is a high priority for our service.

I am unable to contact you direct so I ask that you please contact me on 9892 2440 so we can arrange to talk either over the phone or meet in person at a time convenient to you.

I hope to talk to you soon and again, thank you for taking the time to provide this valuable feedback.

Your sincerely,

Matt Wells

Regional Mental Health Manager

WACHS Great Southern Mental Health Services.

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