Mental health information for health professionals
Most of our mental health information has moved.
Mental Health Alcohol and Other Drugs Branch
The Mental Health Alcohol and Other Drugs Branch is a specialist policy and project unit within the Department of Health, Health Policy and Strategy Division.
The unit is responsible for monitoring the delivery of mental health alcohol and other drugs services as well as:
- service development and integration
- mental health and alcohol and other drug legislative reform matters
- National mental health and alcohol and other drug reform agenda activities and projects
- provision of funding to non-government organisations.
Mental Health and Related Services Act 1998
The Mental Health and Related Services Act 1998 (the Act) is the framework that balances the rights and treatment of those with acute mental illness in the Northern Territory.
It is underpinned by international, national and Northern Territory legislation, principles and quality standards. The Act is to be interpreted so that a person who has a mental illness receives the best possible care and treatment in the least restrictive and least intrusive environment enabling the care and treatment to be effectively given. The objective of treatment under the Act is directed towards the purpose of preserving and enhancing personal autonomy.
The purpose of the Approved Procedures is to provide guidance to procedural requirements arising from the administration of the Act in the day-to-day operation of mental health services. The Approved Procedures have been approved by the Chief Executive of the Department of Health in accordance with section 18 of the Act.
Admission and treatment
Any medical practitioner registered to practice in the Northern Territory can make a Recommendation for Psychiatric Examination.
Before you submit a Recommendation (form 9) call the mental health helpline on 1800 682 288.
Appointments and delegations
- #21: Authorised Psychiatric Practitioners (APP) Appointment Procedure
- #22: Designated Mental Health Practitioners (DMHP) Appointment Procedure
External monitoring and review
- #19: Northern Territory Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NTCAT) hearings procedure
- #19A: Assessment Warrants procedure
Transport of people with a mental illness
Regulated treatment and measures
- Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT)
- #12: Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) Procedure
- #12A: Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) Licensing of Premises Procedure
- Non psychiatric treatment, major medical procedures and clinical trials
- #30: Non-psychiatric Treatment, Major Medical Procedures, Clinical Trials and Experimental Treatments Procedure
Any questions regarding the approved procedures should be directed to the Mental Health Alcohol and Other Drugs Branch on (08) 8999 2691 or emailed to mhaod.DoH@nt.gov.au
Approved Procedures and Quality Assurance Committee (APQAC)
The Approved Procedures and Quality Assurance Committee (APQAC) is a statutory Committee established under Part 17 of the Act. Membership is outlined in the Terms of Reference, and endorsed by the Chief Executive of the Department of Health.
Pursuant to section 145(2) of the Act, the function of APQAC is to:
- monitor and review the approved procedures and forms and where appropriate, recommend amendments to them
- assess and evaluate the quality of mental health services, including clinical practices and privileges, and where appropriate, recommend changes to them.
Any questions regarding APQAC should be directed to the Mental Health Alcohol and Other Drugs Branch on (08) 8999 2691 or emailed to mhaod.DoH@nt.gov.au
The peak body for community-managed mental health is the Northern Territory Mental Health Coalition (NTMHC).
For a list of non-government services go to community based mental health services.
- A National framework for recovery-oriented mental health services: guide for practitioners and providers
- A National framework for recovery-oriented mental health services: policy and theory
- National standards for mental health services 2010
- The Fifth National Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Plan
- The Fifth National Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Plan – Implementation Plan
- Consumers guide to the Mental Health and Related Services Act
Mental Health Alcohol and Other Drugs Branch - Darwin
PO Box 40596
Casuarina NT 0811
Phone: (08) 8999 2829
Last updated: 25 March 2020
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