Primary Health Tasmania

19 September 2018  Project progress

MHPN networks are an opportunity for mental health practitioners from different disciplines to collaborate.  Research shows that networking develops practitioner relationships, improves referral pathways and outcomes for patients. 

The below networks are active in the Tasmania PHN area. 

For more information about active networks in the Tasmania area or how to start a network, contact MHPN on 1800 209 031 or

Hobart Perinatal and Infant Mental Health

Coordinators Kelly Madden & Dr Beamish have been coordinating this network for several years. They meet monthly, with topics this year including - When two become three, Families begin with the couple, Clare House, Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services, The Parenting Centre: Services, Referrals and Q&A and A tour and session about the St Helen's Private Hospital Mother Baby Unit. The group is always well attended and has a diverse mix of all professions. 

Hobart BPD

MHPN has partnered with The Australian BPD Foundation to support a BPD focused networks in Hobart, that is locally coordinated by psychologists at The Hobart Clinic. Health practitioners working in the mental health and related sectors are invited to attend.  The network meets four times per year.  

Hobart Multidisciplinary Balint MHPN

This is a Balint Group which meets monthly.  Practitioners build strong relationships and engage in peer support.  The network has met 55 times.

What is a Balint Group? 

A Balint Group is a small experiential, educational group in which participants meet to discuss difficult and intriguing cases. The focus of the group is on the emotional aspects of the case, particularly the client-practitioner relationship. 

Huonville MHPN

This a small network established in June 2010 and focuses on various areas of mental health. Network meetings consist of presentations by members and invited guests and case study discussions. 
Huonville is situated about 40km south of Hobart with a population of less than 2000 people, and is an example of one of MHPN’s many regional networks. Despite its small size, Huonville’s MHPN network has met 24 times since its inception in mid-2010, making the network one of the most longstanding in the region.  The network meets at the Huon Manor, allowing for a relaxed setting in which to participate in professional development and networking activities. Nearby Kingston/Blackmans Bay network members are invited to attend Huonville meetings as a matter of course, allowing us to support a wider range and number of practitioners to meet.  

Launceston Network

This network has new coordinators, Camille Everett - a social worker from Baptcare, Andy Kelly - a mental health coordinator with Anglicare and Luigi Romanelli - a clinical hypnotherapist and counsellor. The network attracts a high number of local practitioners, has high profile guest speakers, and has met on 26 occasions.  MHPN looks forward to continuing to support this longstanding network and working with the incoming coordination team. 

Launceston Diabetes and Mental Health

This network has a specific focus on supporting the mental health of people diagnosed and living with diabetes. The network membership is made up of primary health professionals such as a GP and registered nurses.  Other members include psychologists who have regular contact or an interest in supporting patients/clients with diabetes, as well as other professionals who specialise in diabetes treatment, such as diabetes educators. The network aims to foster local referral pathways between general practice and mental health professionals. The first meeting for 2017 is to be held in March and will feature a presentation on the New NDSS Diabetes and Emotional Health Handbook by Dr Christel Hendrieckx, Clinical Psychologist and Research Fellow at the Australian Centre for Behavioural Research in Diabetes. 

Tasmanian LGBTI Mental Health Network

The local LGBTIQ+ support service Working It Out, organise the network’s meeting agendas and facilitate the meetings.  The meetings include presentations from local and state-wide services, which aim to inform and educate members across the general health and mental health sectors in LGBTIQ+ sensitive and transformative practice.  The network fosters collaborations and improves referral pathways between primary care and broader mental health services to support the mental health of the local LGBTIQ+ community.

Hobart Eastern Shore Network

Interdisciplinary practitioners meet at the local Senior and Citizens Centre to collaborate and network.  Recently local psychiatrist Dr Stephanie Auchincloss presented on the topic of suicidality and risk of harm to others.  The network used MHPN’s psychiatrist speaker initiative to event.   The network brings together practitioners, which improves referral pathways and mental heath services in Tasmania.  Members include; psychiatrists, GPs, psychologists, mental health nurses, occupational therapists, social workers, or any other practitioner who delivers primary mental health care. 

Hobart Trauma Network

Over 40 local mental health practitioners attend this large interdisciplinary Tasmanian network.   The network welcomes two new coordinators on board for 2017 – Christine Healy (Mental Health Nurse) and Chrissie Webster (Clinical Nurse Consultant).  Trauma focused topics are presented by members, and local professionals provide practitioners with knowledge of local resources.  The group collaboratively address the mental health of those experiencing or who have experienced trauma.  The group has met together seven times since the group was established in 2015.

Hobart Diabetes and Mental Health Network

Diabetes Tasmania partnered with MHPN in 2016 to establish this interdisciplinary network, which is focused on fostering collaborations and referral pathways to better support the mental health of those in the local community who have diabetes.  Jacqueline Townley, a local diabetes nurse educator, coordinates the network.  Members of the network include mental health professionals such as GPs, psychologists, social workers and anyone else providing mental health care that is in regular contact with or has an interest in supporting patients with diabetes. The first meeting for 2017 is to be held in March and will feature a presentation on the New NDSS Diabetes and Emotional Health Handbook by Dr Christel Hendrieckx, Clinical Psychologist and Research Fellow at the Australian Centre for Behavioural Research in Diabetes.