Review of the NSW State Mental Health Telephone Access Line Program

Mental Health and Drug & Alcohol Office (now known as the Mental Health Branch) of the NSW Ministry of Health

In late 2015, the Mental Health and Drug & Alcohol Office (now known as the Mental Health Branch) of the NSW Ministry of Health engaged Health Policy Analysis to undertake a six-month review of the state wide operation of the NSW State Mental Health Telephone Access Line (SMHTAL) Program as part of the ongoing quality improvement process for the service. The project reviewed business processes, governance arrangements and the performance of the service.

Health Policy Analysis reviewed the effectiveness of the Program, with a specific focus on:

- The effectiveness of corporate and clinical governance arrangements.
- Assessing whether these arrangements supported an effective, integrated and sustainable service.

Health Policy Analysis reviewed the performance of the Program in terms of:

- Performance against the established Standards for this service.
- Resourcing of the service including technology to support the effective delivery of the service.

Based on the above, and to inform the ongoing quality improvement of the service, Health Policy Analysis made recommendations in the following areas:

- Structural / service model
- Capacity / scale
- Budgetary
- Technology
- Corporate and Clinical Governance
- Resourcing