Model of Care introduces an exciting new phase for veteran mental health support

Open Arms, formerly known as the Vietnam Veterans Counselling Service, has been delivering mental health support services to the veteran community for over 40 years. Founded by Vietnam Veterans, it is one of the few mental health services established by people with lived experience. Its longevity is testament to the ongoing adaptions made to support successive generations of veterans and families.

Open Arms recently launched its Model of Care, a document that outlines what clients can expect when they reach out for support. It defines Open Arms remit as a specialist service, focusing on delivery of military aware and trauma informed care rather than replicating more generalist services.  

“Our Model of Care was inspired by the need to ensure the service is effectively responding to the changing needs of the veteran and family community, and delivering specialised programs related to the impact of military service” said Leonie Nowland, Open Arms’ First Assistant Secretary.

The Model of Care outlines how Open Arms operates on the basis of episodes of care, consistent with other health services. This means that when someone engages with Open Arms for their mental health support needs the engagement is goal based and outcome focused, with a beginning, middle, and an end. When further support is needed, access to other support options are made as easy as possible.

The model of care also outlines how Open Arms works in partnership with health systems, including GPs and psychiatrists to comprehensively support clients, especially where the person is acutely unwell. It summarises a number of changes to how the health system can engage with Open Arms, including a new referral process

“The Model of Care was developed in consultation with key stakeholders and our staff, including clinicians and people with lived experience and trauma informed care within a recovery model. We are very excited about the role it will play in shaping how we support veterans and veteran families into the future.”

To learn more about the Model of Care, visit here

If you want to know how Open Arms can offer you mental health support, contact us any time on 1800 011 046.