Youth Mental Health

NMHS Mental Health, Public Health and Dental Services (MHPHDS) Youth Mental Health work collaboratively to provide a range of services to improve the mental health and wellbeing of young people across Perth.

The WA Mental Health Commission (WA MHC) defines youth as aged 16 to 24. Youth Mental Health works closely with Adult Mental Health Services and Child & Adolescent Mental Health Services to provide mental health services to young people with serious mental health disorders within the youth age cohort.

Youth Mental Health services are outlined below:

YouthReach South

As of July 1 YouthReach South has moved to the South Metropolitan Health Service (external site).

Youth Axis

Youth Axis provides an early intervention service for young people presenting with ultra-high risk of psychosis and/or features of an emotionally unstable personality disorder. Youth Axis targets young people who have not had extensive treatment by a specialist mental health service for these presenting problems, and will see people for up to six months.

The following criteria must be met to be eligible for service:

 

Meets all criteria: Plus either:
  • The young person is residing in stable accommodation in the Perth Metropolitan area
  • 16 to 24 years old
  • Willing to accept help
  • Early intervention

 

Exclusion criteria:

  • Continual psychotic symptoms for more than seven days
  • Needs are better met by another service

Ultra-high risk of psychosis. Unusual and out of character thoughts and / or behaviour.

or:

Features of an emotionally unstable personality disorder (which include a combination of):

  • suicidal ideation and / or self-harming
  • risk taking / impulsivity
  • emotional instability
  • impaired sense of self
  • impairment in interpersonal functioning
  • separation insecurity: fears of abandonment by significant others

 

Services offered

  • Assessment
  • Evidence based counselling, skills-based therapy and psycho-education
  • Psychosocial support
  • Outreach
  • Transitional support
  • Consultative advice and support to other agencies including collaborative clinical interventions and projects.

 

Referral information for Youth Axis and YouthLink

  • An integrated triage and entry process exist between YouthLink and Youth Axis
  • Type referral details in an Electronic Referral form (Word) and send to the service by email
  • Hand write referral details in this Referral form (PDF) which needs to be printed, scanned and sent to the service by email
  • Referrals / triage phone: 1300 362 569
  • Email referral form to: youthmhtriage@health.wa.gov.au
  • Fax referral form to: (08) 9287 5762

 

Contact us

Tel: (08) 9287 5700
Fax: (08) 9287 5760
Hours: 08:30 to 16:30 Monday to Friday
Location: 32-34 Salvado Road, Wembley WA 6014

Youth Hospital in the Home (Youth-HITH)

Youth Hospital in the Home (Youth-HITH) is an eight-bed service that provides short term intensive management for up to 14 days in the patient’s home or usual place of residence that would otherwise be delivered within a hospital as an admitted inpatient.

The service model is based on the principles of the National Framework for Recovery-Oriented Mental Health Services relating to patient-focused service delivery and Trauma Informed Care. Care and treatment offered is patient-centred, with carer/family collaboration, multidisciplinary, comprehensive and collaborative. The multidisciplinary team consists of a Consultant Psychiatrist, Medical Officer, Mental Health Nurses, and Allied Health staff.  Youth-HITH clinicians work in partnership with the individual and their families or carers to provide intensive support, education and guidance to all parties. Where possible, clinicians work with the patient’s general practitioner (GP) and other service providers to enable maximum communication and continuity of care.

 

How the service operates

Clinicians conduct the initial assessment interview in the most appropriate environment, in collaboration with the consumer, their family or carer and other services as required. An agreed treatment plan is developed, which includes a crisis plan.

Clinicians visit the home every day to review and monitor treatment and progress. Counselling and information is typically provided to the consumer or carer on a daily basis to help develop a better understanding of the illness experience and to improve existing coping skills. Youth-HITH patients may also have a psychiatry/medication review in the home if indicated.

 

Who is eligible?

Young people:

  • Aged 16-24 years who are experiencing an acute phase of mental illness and require short-term support (up to 14 days)
  • Low to moderate risk
  • Residing in the North Metropolitan Mental Health Catchment Areas and have stable accommodation
  • Able to give consent and are willing to accept Youth-HITH as an alternative to hospital.

 

Who can refer?

Young people may be referred from specialised mental health inpatient units, Inpatient services, Community Mental Health Teams, Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services, Adult Community Mental Health Services, Youth Mental Health, Emergency Departments and private Psychiatrists.

 

Referral information for Youth Hospital in the Home:

 

Contact us

Tel: (08) 6159 6436
Fax: (08) 6159 6388
Hours: 08:00 to 20:30 Monday to Sunday
Location: Gascoyne House, Mt Claremont WA  6010

Youth and Adult Complex Attentional Disorders Service (YACADS)

Youth and Adult Complex Attentional Disorders Service (YACADS) is a consultation and liaison service for youth or adult Community Mental Health Services (CMHS).

We provide specialist consultation, assessments, and treatment for individuals with a history of complex attention and hyperactivity symptoms and co-occurring Axis 1 or Axis 2 diagnosed mental health conditions. We work with youth and adults currently under long-term case management by a youth or adult public CMHS (i.e., Continuing Treatment Team).

Please note: We operate Monday, Thursday and Friday, and do not provide emergency medical or mental health services.

 

YACADS team

  • Consultant psychiatrist
  • Senior clinical neuropsychologist
  • Administrative assistant

 

YACADS Services

YACADS provides diagnostic assessment for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), with consideration of differential and comorbid diagnoses (e.g., psychiatric, neurodevelopmental, neurodegenerative), and brief stimulant prescribing trials for individuals who are diagnosed with ADHD by YACADS and are suitable/eligible for pharmaceutical therapy.

Once a referral has been accepted, the client will be waitlisted for assessment, and case managers advised of approximate waitlist times. Clients who are next on the waitlist will be offered a psychiatry assessment, which CMHS case managers are encouraged to attend. Case managers may be contacted prior to the appointment and asked to provide further collateral information that will be useful in determining an ADHD diagnosis.

A neuropsychological assessment may be conducted to confirm a diagnosis of ADHD; however, it is not always required. If your referral for assessment is primarily to obtain a neuropsychological assessment, please consider referring your client to the Neurosciences Unit (see referral criteria here: Neurosciences Unit Adult General Diagnostic Program (PDF).

 

What is a neuropsychological assessment?

A neuropsychological assessment is an assessment of thinking (e.g., attention, problem-solving, memory, executive functioning) skills and behaviour. Clients will be required to complete tests that involve question and answer, paper and pencil, and computer-based tasks. They will also be asked to complete questionnaires about their current mood, sleep and behaviour. As part of the neuropsychological assessment, we usually speak with someone who knows them well (e.g., family member, significant other, friend), and can provide information about their developmental history and/or symptoms of ADHD.

Neuropsychological assessments are usually 4 hours long (including breaks) and may be split across two sessions if clinically indicated. Please let YACADS know if there are any special requirements to be considered when making these appointments (e.g., fatigue, severe performance anxiety).

After the diagnostic assessment process is complete, the client and their case manager will be invited to attend a feedback session during which they will be advised of the assessment outcome and recommendations for clinical management. The client and case manager will be encouraged to take an active part in future care-planning during the feedback session. A summary report of the assessment will be provided to the case manager and can be provided to the client through Freedom of Information.

 

Referral information

Eligibility criteria

Individuals must meet ALL of the following criteria:

  • Aged 16 to 64 years old (inclusive)
  • Has a co-occurring Axis 1 or Axis 2 diagnosed mental illness (e.g., depression, anxiety disorders, psychotic disorders, personality disorders)
  • Be case managed by a youth or adult Community Mental Health Service Community Treatment Team (CMHS CTT)
  • Has longstanding, complex presentation of moderate to severe difficulties with attention and/or hyperactivity / impulsivity, consistent with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), which interfere with their educational, occupational and/or social functioning
  • Does not already have a diagnosis of ADHD OR has a diagnosis of ADHD that is being questioned by their CMHS team.

 

Exclusion criteria

We do not accept referrals for the following:

  • Diagnosis of ADHD in individuals under the age of 18 (except 16 and 17 year olds case managed by a youth Community Mental Health Services). These referrals could be directed to paediatricians or assessment services in the private sector. Children with complex attention difficulties who are linked in with Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services may be referred to the Complex Attention and Hyperactivity Disorder Service (CAHDS) for assessment and management.
  • Assessment of individuals who already have a diagnosis of ADHD and the diagnosis is not in question.
  • Individuals who are case managed by a CMHS Assessment and Treatment Team (ATT).

 

Additional acceptance requirements

For clients with a known or suspected medical, psychiatric, or neurological condition, it is expected that assessment by relevant medical specialist (e.g., psychiatrist, neurologist) will have occurred or be in progress prior to referring the client for an ADHD assessment.

Known co-morbid medical, psychiatric, and neurological conditions should be treated (e.g., eating disorders, obstructive sleep apnoea) and ideally stable prior to referring the client for an ADHD assessment. Stability of such conditions will be reviewed prior to YACADS appointments being offered.

 

Referral sources

Referrals are only accepted from youth and adult CMHS.

As YACADS is a consultation liaison service for youth and adult CMHS, we are unable to accept referrals from the private sector. However, private service providers are encouraged to liaise with their client’s CMHS case manager regarding referral to YACADS, and are encouraged to provide additional information outlining their concerns.

 

Contact us

Tel: (08) 9227 4300
Fax: (08) 9328 5911
Email: YACADS@health.wa.gov.au
Location: 223 James Street, Northbridge WA 6003
Nearest car park: Wilson Parking 217 James Street and CPP James Street
Nearest train stations: Perth (1km walk) and City West (1.1km walk)
Nearest bus stop: Fitzgerald Street (Stop No: 12819; 242m walk)

Gender Pathways Service (GPS) 

The Gender Pathways Service (GPS) within YouthLink can be accessed state-wide and provides specialist gender diversity consultation, training, community development, referral information and assessment for suitability and readiness for gender affirming medical treatment such as hormones and/or surgery.

Transgender and gender diverse youth are at elevated risk of suicide, self-harm, homelessness and other mental health and psychosocial difficulties. The GPS aims to improve the mental, social, and physical health outcomes for gender diverse youth by increasing capacity within services to provide gender-affirming care and to facilitate access to medical interventions to address gender dysphoria through specialist assessment.

The GPS provides:

  • Specialist assessments to ascertain diagnosis and suitability for gender affirming medical interventions for gender diverse youth, aged between 17 and 24 years, presenting with:
    • complex mental health/neurodevelopmental disorders AND/OR
    • having experienced significant barriers to accessing gender affirming care.
  • Referral for ongoing mental health and psychosocial support for youth with gender issues.
  • Consultation to mental health providers, professional bodies and organisations around issues relating to gender diverse youth.
  • Education and training in the youth sector to increase inclusive and gender affirming practices.
  • Peer consultation and education to develop capacity to complete assessment for readiness for gender affirming medical interventions.
  • Peer education and consultation to mental health service staff to support the management of young people with gender issues who also present with mental health and/or neurodevelopmental disorders.
  • Development of psychoeducational resources/support materials related to social and medical gender transition.

Note: The GPS does not provide ongoing mental health support or case management. A referral to a Youth Mental Health service, in addition to a referral to the GPS, would be advised if the young person is likely to require ongoing mental health support and meets the criteria for YouthLink, YouthReach South or Youth Axis.

Assessment follows the World Professional Association for Transgender Health standards of care guidelines.

 

Admission Criteria for Assessment

  • 17-24 years of age (inclusive)
  • Gender questioning /gender-diverse identity
  • Seeking assessment to determine suitability for readiness for medical intervention/s to address gender dysphoria. Gender dysphoria refers to the distress that may accompany the incongruence between an individual’s experienced or expressed gender and their sex assigned at birth
  • Presenting with co-occurring complex mental health and/or neurodevelopmental concerns, AND/OR
  • Experiencing heightened distress due to facing significant barriers to accessing assessment needed to pursue gender affirming medical interventions
  • Must be experiencing significant barriers in accessing these assessments elsewhere.

 

Exclusion Criteria

  • Is eligible for/is a current client of the Gender Diversity Service at Perth Children’s Hospital.
  • Has capacity to/is accessing private psychiatry/mental health services that can complete assessment
  • Currently accessing gender-affirming hormone therapy (not applicable if the young person is seeking assessment for surgery).

 

Referral information for Gender Pathways Service

 

Contact us

Tel: (08) 9227 4300
Fax: (08) 9328 5911 
Hours: 08:30 to 16:30 Monday to Friday
Location: 223 James Street, Northbridge WA 6003

NMHS Youth Community Assessment and Treatment Team (YCATT)

YCATT provides an intensive community outreach service for young people aged 16 to 24 years, with emerging and/or exacerbation of symptoms of potentially severe or complex mental health disorders.

The service delivers community-based triage, assessment and intensive short-term management for up to 12 weeks for young people in the North Metropolitan Health Service Mental Health (NMHS MH) catchment area.

YCATT provides a specialist youth multidisciplinary team offering person-centred, trauma-informed, acute mental health care that promotes strengths and a recovery focus in partnership with families, carers, other youth services and non-government organisations (NGOs).

 

Phase 2

YCATT is continuing to evolve through phases to achieve full operation. As such, we are currently providing a limited service based on our Phase 2 inclusion criteria prior to our full launch.

The criteria for this phase are young people aged 16 to 24 within the NMHS MH catchment area who:

  • Are experiencing an acute phase of mental illness that has been deemed currently low to moderate risk
  • Have a severe and complex mental health concern that would benefit from a multidisciplinary team
  • Are able to engage in case management, medical and other allied health support via outreach (home visits and community outreach), clinic-based or telehealth (medical)
  • Are not already receiving treatment from a NMHS MHPHDS Community Adult Assessment and Treatment Team (ATT) or Continuing Treatment Team (CTT), or Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services, or have previously received treatment from an adult CCT.

Our phase 2 exclusion criteria are:

  • Primary management of eating disorders
  • Primary management of substance use disorders
  • People with high acute risk.

Note: We have limited capacity to accommodate “urgent” referrals. As we approach phase 3 (full operation), we will be providing additional services, including extended hours for appointment flexibility.

 

Referral sources and information

  • Referral form (Printable PDF) | Referral form (Electronic PDF)
  • We are accepting referrals from all sources, including health service providers, general practitioners, NGOs, schools / education providers, Department of Communities, psychologists, hospitals, families, friends and individuals, as well as self-referring.
  • For more information or to discuss a potential referral, please contact our triage officer via (08) 6382 3700.

 

Contact us

Tel: (08) 6382 3700
Email: ycatt.nmhstriage@health.wa.gov.au
Hours: 08:30 to 16:30 Monday to Friday
Location: 20 Brown Street, East Perth, 6004

Last Updated: 13/09/2023