New role for Sobering Up Centre site

Geraldton Guardian
WA Mental Health minister Roger Cook with WA Mental Health Commissioner Timothy Marney at the site of the abandoned Geraldton Sobering Up Centre on Tuesday.
Camera IconWA Mental Health minister Roger Cook with WA Mental Health Commissioner Timothy Marney at the site of the abandoned Geraldton Sobering Up Centre on Tuesday. Credit: Geoff Vivian

The former Sobering Up Shelter site in Larkin Street, Geraldton, will be used to house mental health patients who are too well to be hospitalised but not ready to return to living in the community.

Mental Health minister Roger Cook announced the new 10-bed, $5.93 million mental health facility in Geraldton on Tuesday.

“The new 10-bed community mental health step up/step down service is anticipated to open in Geraldton in 2021,” he said.

“The transformation will offer short-term residential individualised care for people either following discharge from hospital, or who are experiencing a change in their mental health to avoid a possible hospitalisation.”

Mr Cook said “step up/step down services” aimed to support people living in the community by providing a range of support programs and activities within a residential style setting.

He said they did this by offering additional support for the individual to manage a change in their mental health and being closer to the support from family and friends.

“The service will benefit people already living in the Mid West by providing an additional service that will be delivered through a partnership between a non-government service provider and the local mental health service,” Mr Cook said.

He said more regional community mental health step up/step down services were planned for Bunbury, Kalgoorlie, Karratha and Broome.

Step up/step down services are currently operational in Joondalup (22 beds), Rockingham (10 beds) and Albany (six beds).

Comments attributed to Agricultural Region member Darren West said the Geraldton community had long been calling for mental health services based in the Mid West.

“This new 10-bed community mental health step up/step down will provide a superb service closer to where people live and closer to their local support networks,” he said.

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