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Fiona Stanley Hospital opens six more beds for 16 to 24 year olds experiencing acute mental ill health

"Between 16 and 24 can be a challenging phase of life for many people and is when the majority of mental health issues begin to emerge," said Mental Health Minister Andrea Mitchell, in a press release by the Fiona Stanley Hospital. The release was published on 20th November 2016 to announce the opening of 6 new beds in the dedicated mental health Youth Unit, for 16 to 24 year olds experiencing acute mental ill health. The aim is to provide more age appropriate services for these young people.

In April 2016, the Youth Community Assessment and Treatment Team, an extension of FSH's Youth Unit, was launched to help identify mental health issues which might emerge at this age. "Specially trained clinicians work closely with schools, community managed organisations and primary health care providers to facilitate early assessment and treatment," Health Minister John Day says. The community outreach team are available both as a preventative measure and post discharge. The release stated that, in the first six months, the Youth Community Assessment and Treatment Team service diverted 32 young people from being admitted to hospital.

Carers have the lowest wellbeing of any group within the community, according to a 2007 study by Deakin University, Geelong, Victoria. Anxiety and depression are among the two most common health concerns listed on the consent forms received by the Young Carers WA program. Young carers aged 18 to 25 are the hardest to engage, with many events organised for this age group needing to be cancelled due to low RSVPs.

Young Carers WA urges young adult carers who are experiencing mental ill health to contact Carers WA's Counselling program, which has counsellors available across all of Perth on selected days. Sessions can also be accessed by phone, email and in special circumstances, Skype. The Carers Counselling line number is 1800 007 332, open 8.00am – 5.00pm. Carers WA's Advisory team can also help link carers in with other supporting services and Young Carers WA offers formal referrals where needed. 

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