AAMH consortium partner St Vincent’s wins national award

December 11, 2012

The Post-graduate Overseas Specialist Training (POST) Program, run by AAMH consortium partner St Vincent’s Mental Health has been awarded this year’s prestigious St. Vincent’s Health Australia National Award for highest achievement in Community Service. This award was accepted on behalf of the program by Associate Professor Chee Ng, Co-director AAMH.

Associate Professor Ng commented that “this significant achievement in international mental health by the POST program, widely known in Asia, has also received recognition here in Australia”

St.Vincent’s Health Australia National Awards are open to services including St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne, St Vincent’s Institute & Bernard O’Brien Institute, St Vincent’s & Mercy Private Hospital Melbourne, St Vincent’s & Mater Health Sydney, Garvan Institute & Victor Chang Institute, and  St Vincent’s & Holy Spirit Health Service Queensland.

The POST Program supports Mental Health Development in the Asia-Pacific by enhancing the capacity of the mental health workforce.

St Vincent’s Mental Health developed the Post-graduate Overseas Training (POST) Program to provide clinical placements for mental health professionals from the Asia Pacific to learn about Victorian mental health models, particularly in community service delivery.

In 2008, the Program was restructured to meet increasing demand and to provide better coordinated and appropriate training. It has engaged other mental health services and over the next 18 months increased the capacity of the Program. POST Fellows were required to complete training objectives and on return to their countries to implement service improvements. In 2009 due to increasing demand from Hong Kong, St Vincent’s staff began delivering training in Hong Kong to more mental health professionals preparing for community mental health reform.

Over 60 POST Fellows from 14 countries in the Asia Pacific region have participated since 2008. Chinese Fellows studied mental health in disasters, and applied their new learning to respond to people affected by the tragic earthquake in Sichuan. Fellows from Mongolia have started community mental health services in traditional Mongolian tent houses called `gers’. By training emerging mental health leaders in the Asia Pacific, this can make a difference to millions of poor and disadvantaged people in the Asia Pacific region.