A NSW Government website



Information for Families and Carers

In an emergency, Hospital Emergency Departments (EDs)  can provide mental health assessment and support| In life-threatening situations call 000 for immediate help.

HNE Mental Health Service, Family and Carer Mental Health Program

About the Program

Working with people with a mental illness and supporting their families and carers is pivotal to achieving strong outcomes in mental health care.

Research shows supporting carers benefits consumers, including enhancing the effectiveness of service delivery, decreasing hospital admissions and reducing relapse rates.

In acknowledgement of the need to support carers and involve them in care the NSW Government has funded the Family and Carer Mental Health Program since 2005.

The NSW Family and Carer Mental Health Program is a state wide program funded by the NSW Ministry of Health, and delivered in partnership between local health districts

At HNE mental health Service we partner with One Door Carer Services.

More information about the program and framework:

Family and Carer

One Door


One Door Carer Services provides information, education, advocacy, and support, through the Family and Carer Mental Health Program (FCMHP).

One Door Mental Health is the service provider for the NSW Family & Carer Mental Health Program in partnership with five Local Health Districts (LHD). The five LHDs involved are Hunter New England, Murrumbidgee, Southern NSW, Sydney, and South Western Sydney. The FCMHP is funded by the NSW Ministry of Health. One Door employ Carer Advocates to deliver this program to those who support someone living with mental illness.

For information about One Door Carer Services:

Information about treatment and services

HNE Patient Info

For simple information about different diagnoses - click here

Facility list

For information about the various mental health services and their locations - click here

What to expect when accessing our services

To read about what you can expect if you come to hospital - click here

Choice and Medication for Hunter New England Local Health District

This website provides information about medications used in mental health conditions. It is updated and maintained by health care professionals, and receives no funding from drug companies. It is for patients, consumers, carers and health professionals in the Hunter New England Local Health District.

Access Choice and Medication here

Family / Carer Support Map

Partnering with families, kinship and carers in mental healthcare

Phases of Family Engagement - The FIVE Point Plan for Families

This tool was developed in partnership with carers. It is a tool to help you navigate the phases of care.

The NSW Carers Charter

We are committed to working alongside consumers, and see it as key to achieving better outcomes for people accessing mental health services.

Because we are committed to this principle, we have a focus on partnering with consumers and carers in our healthcare planning.

There are a number of ways consumers, carers and the community can get involved and help us to design and deliver mental healthcare.

The Mental Health Lived Experience Participation Unit (LEPU)

People with lived experience of mental health challenges, their carers, families and other support people are recognised as active partners with our service. Effective participation occurs when consumers and carers are meaningfully involved in decision making about a person’s care and treatment, or providing input on decision making about service delivery, health policy and planning, or about the broader wellbeing of themselves and the community (Department of Human Services, 2006).

To support safe and effective engagement and participation across the service, unit, program and organisational levels, HNE MHS has a Lived Experience Participation Unit (LEPU). It is the preferred method for collaborating with independent people who are passionate about engaging in systemic advocacy and service redesign and innovation. The unit is a central point for the recruitment, management and support of these enthusiastic individuals and the service.

People can partner with us in a variety of ways:
  • At an Individual level – examples include: shared decisions about treatment, care and self-management; feedback on your experiences of care (CES Survey).
  • With a Service, Unit or Program – examples include: being involved in co-design of service improvement or new developments; being involved in reference groups and committees; providing feedback and being involved in the co-evaluation of services.
  • Across the Organisation (HNEMHS) – examples include: being a representative on advisory groups and committees looking at policies and new services; participating in governance roles monitoring performance; and being involved in training of staff.
  • At the broader community and strategic systems level – examples include advocacy in consumer and community groups at regional, state, national levels; co-design of policies and strategies; representatives on committees.

Please email for more information or if you would like to become a member of the LEPU

Charter of Healthcare Rights

Charter of Healthcare Rights - apply to all people in all places where health care is provided in Australia. The Charter describes what you, or someone you care for, can expect when receiving health care

Aboriginal Mental Health - Yimamulinbinkaan “The ones who lead/Leaders”

Maruung Maruung   “Good good Deadly”   Yarn up Feel Deadly application

The app includes a number of culturally considerate resources and powerful personal video testimonials. The app includes:

  • Resources to learn Aboriginal language
  • Information regarding mental health conditions, treatments and medications
  • Details of upcoming community events
  • Employment opportunities

It also has a staff portal where training and case scenarios are available on how to provide culturally responsive mental health assessments for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people. While the culturally appropriate app is designed to target the Aboriginal community, the content and links will benefit and be of interest to all.

Yarn Up Feel Deadly Application

Download the free 'SportsBag Communicator App'. Once downloaded press 'My Services', then search and type in Yarn Up Feel Deadly.

Why our services ask if someone identifies as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander

Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) resources

HNE Multicultural Mental Health Service

The Multicultural Health Service supports clinicians to provide equitable and accessible public health care to culturally and linguistically diverse patients and Deaf People.

Families and carers from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds can access more information by clicking here

The Transcultural Mental Health Centre (TMHC)

The Transcultural Mental Health Centre (TMHC) works with health professionals and communities across New South Wales to support positive mental health for people from culturally and linguistically diverse communities

Rural and Remote Information and Resources

Rural Adversity Mental Heatlh Program (RAMHP)

RAMHP exists for regional, rural and remote people and communities of NSW. The program emerged in 2007 during drought and while it has evolved and broadened its community reach, it continues to have a specific focus of supporting people and communities who depend on primary production and agriculture, alongside other priority populations at greater risk of mental ill health.

Access RAMHP here


The Farmgate Support Program provides free emotional and mental health support to people living and working in rural & remote communities  throughout the Hunter New England Local Health District.

Child and Adolescent Information

HNE Mental Health Service web page for CAMHS

Our Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) provide a range of services in the local community to children, adolescents and their families with a range of difficulties that seriously impact on their mental health and emotional wellbeing.

Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) - Mental health (nsw.gov.au)

headspace National Youth Mental Health Foundation

headspace is the National Youth Mental Health Foundation. They began in 2006, and ever since have provided early intervention mental health services to 12-25-year-olds.

Access headspace here

Providing feedback to the Mental Health Service

Complaints and compliments

The information that comes from complaints and compliments helps us to changed and improve our services. Click here for the various ways in which you can submit a complaint or a compliment.

Carer Experience Survey

Carer Experience Survey

We'd love to get your feedback to improve our services and make things easier. You can get a copy of the survey at any of our MH service locations - please ask

Information and Resources for Families and Carers

Family and Carer Update / Newsletter

Please see this month’s edition of the HNE MHS Family and Carer informational Resource. Topic for this month - Talking about deterioration...and how to escalate concerns using REACH (Patient, Family and Carer Escalation)

Click here for a newsletter containing the latest family and carer updates and resources

Factsheets, Information and Brochures

HNE Mental Health Service Family and Carer Resources




Caring through COVID




Dual Diagnosis


Caring for ageing carers, with a focus on caring for the elderly




How to provide meaningful feedback to the service - Part 1


How to provide meaningful feedback to the service - Part 2


Eating Disorders; information and support for families and carers


Trauma as result of exposure to war and/or civil unrest; How to support those we care for and ourselves during times of stress and uncertainty


Navigating mental illness experienced by children and adolescents.


Grief and Loss- the experiences of families and carers


Support for families and carers of people from the LGBTIQ+ community -through a mental health lens


Borderline Personality Disorder- useful resources for family members, partners, friends and other support people


Resilience; what it is and how can we work towards achieving it


NovemberNavigating Change


JanuarySelf care- what does this mean for families, friends and carers?
MarchWorried about the person you support?
MayKnowing your limits. How can you consider safe boundaries for you and the person you care for?
JulyNavigating supports for young adults experiencing mental illness and/or distress
OctoberUnderstanding Schizophrenia - For families, carers and support people
DecemberDischarge from Acute Mental Health - Community and/or Inpatient Services

Useful Links