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NSW Older People’s Mental Health Services Plan 2017-2027

Service Plan: 2017-2027


The service plan is underpinned by principles of recovery-oriented care by improving accessibility to services and promoting consistent and high quality care for older people. The purpose of the plan is to ensure services are continually improving and developing to meet the needs of older people with mental health problems.

OPMH Service Delivery Model and Strategic Directions

The key strategic directions for OPMH community services include the following:

  • Improved appropriateness of services for older people
  • Increased accessibility and capacity of services
  • Improved equity by matching service provision to population needs
  • Improved practice, performance and efficiency in regards to national frameworks
  • Promotion of partnerships, collaboration and integration
  • Reorientation of services to become recovery-oriented in line with evidence-based models of care

Implementation, Reporting, Monitoring and Evaluation

The plan will be implemented over the next ten years in two major phases:

Phase One:

  • Improving and expanding OPMH community services
  • Policy and service model development for acute services
  • Service development strategies for specific population groups e.g. LGBTI

Phase two:

  • Further policy and service model development for non-acute OPMH services
  • Policy and model review of phase one

Strategic Policy and Planning Context

The plan has been developed with the following contextual principles in mind

  • A growing ageing population as well as an increasing number of older people experiencing mental health problems.
  • The emerging direction of mental health care which is influenced by person-centred and individualised care, recovery-oriented care and practices as well as consumer-directed care.
  • An insufficient number of community care options as well as limited access to care
  • The vulnerability of the older population and the appropriateness of services
  • The needs and requirements of specific population groups

Reporting and monitoring of outcomes will be documented through consumer clinical outcomes reporting, consumer experience reporting, activity reporting, staffing and service data, NSW mental health performance reporting, financial reporting and mental health reform reporting. A mid-term evaluation will take place in 2022 to review the plan and determine the progress and effectiveness of phase 1 as well as review the context and strategic development for phase 2.

Models of Care

Services that may support the implementation of the OPMHP:

  • Commonwealth Home Care Packages Program – this may be utilised to deliver mental health services to people in the community however the outcome of this is based on the development of partnerships, provider capabilities and assessment practices.


NSW Ministry of Health. (2017). NSW Old People’s Health Services: Service Plan 2017-2027. Retrieved from

NSW Ministry of Health. (2017). Specialist Mental Health Services for Older People (SMHSOP) Community Model of Care Guideline. Retrieved from