Planning for the Veterans’ Mental Health Precinct

In planning for the new Veterans’ Mental Health Precinct, the government has worked with the Veteran community, SA Health staff and interested parties on all aspects of the precinct’s design and function to ensure it will meet the current and future needs of Veterans.

Expert Advisory Panel

An Expert Advisory Panel was established to advise government about the model of care required and a location for mental health services for Veterans. The panel, co-chaired by the Chair of the Repatriation Hospital Foundation, Associate Professor Susan Neuhaus CSC and the Transforming Health Clinical Ambassador, Professor Dorothy Keefe, included clinicians, Veteran representatives, consumers and carers.

The panel assessed a number of locations based on specific criteria, before recommending Glenside Health Service Campus as the site for the new $15 million Veterans’ Mental Health Precinct.

Glenside Health Service Campus is centrally located, can provide a private, low-stimulus environment and has car parking, public transport links and access to recreational, community and garden spaces as well as other inpatient care provided on site.

For more information, read the Veterans Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Centre for Excellence Expert Advisory Panel Report (PDF 595KB) or view the panel bulletins:

Working groups

Once the location of the precinct was decided, an oversight panel and five working groups were established to progress planning of the precinct. The working groups included: model of care, research, partnerships, memorialisation and building design.

For more information about the oversight panel and working groups, view the oversight panel bulletins:

Building design working group

The building design working group provided advice and input into the design of the clinical space for the new facility to ensure it meets current and future Veteran mental health needs.

The proposed building designs were released for public and Veteran comment and several consultation sessions were held with stakeholders. During the month long consultation process, 34 responses were received, including constructive feedback on clinical spaces, grounds, office space, playground space for families of Veterans and car parks.

The feedback from the forums and online submissions was addressed in the building report recommendations, with many of the suggestions incorporated into the final plans.

View the finalised Veterans’ mental health precinct concept plans (PDF 3MB).

For more information:

Memorialisation working group

The memorialisation working group was established to provide advice and input into the design of the non-clinical space for the new Veterans’ Mental Health Precinct, including:

  • naming of the precinct
  • what items should be brought from Ward 17 and the Repatriation General Hospital
  • memorialisation of the grounds and the facility
  • design of the outdoor space (in collaboration with the building design working group).

Consultation was undertaken with the Veteran community on all aspects of advice, including an extensive consultation on an appropriate name for the precinct. The proposed names were compiled from suggestions received at a workshop held with Veterans’ organisations in February 2016. Veterans also had the opportunity to suggest additional names.

The names were considered against a set of criteria that was developed by the working group before the Veterans’ Advisory Council presented the recommended name ‘The Jamie Larcombe Centre’, which was endorsed by the Minister for Mental Health and Substance Abuse.

For more information:

Model of care working group

This working group was established to develop a Model of Care for Specialist Mental Health Services for Veterans (732KB), shaped by evidence based practice and defined by standards of care.

At The Jamie Larcombe Centre:

  • The model of care for Specialist Mental Health Services for Veterans builds on the existing model for Ward 17 at the Repatriation General Hospital, taking into consideration the wide range of services to be delivered at the Jamie Larcombe Centre. Treatment will be provided to Veterans for a range of specialist mental health issues, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety and depression. PTSD services will also be provided to police and emergency services personnel.
  • A range of therapeutic interventions and programs will be available to patients and their families, to provide education about the impact of mental illness, improve coping strategies and support recovery.
  • Being a purpose-built facility, the Jamie Larcombe Centre will include new facilities to support treatment, including a gymnasium, group spaces, sensory garden, family spaces and separate areas for vulnerable groups.
  • Opportunities to offer tele-psychiatry services at the Jamie Larcombe Centre will be explored, enabling Veterans from country areas to access psychiatry services closer to home.
  • A Partnerships Hub will be developed on-site, where Veterans will have access to support services and information from a range of ex-service organisations. The Hub will help Veterans to plan to return to the community and will provide easy access to the ongoing support services they need.

Veterans’ mental health services will move from the Repatriation General Hospital to the Jamie Larcombe Centre in late 2017, following completion of the new precinct.

For more information, view the Consumer Guide (169KB) or watch the Jamie Larcombe Centre video.

Research working group

Research is integral to enhanced clinical care, ongoing medical education and training and career development. The research working group provided advice and recommendations to the oversight panel on:

  • the potential opportunities for Veterans and emergency service personnel mental health research within the new Veterans’ Mental Health Precinct
  • an appropriate model for the research hub
  • how to best use the space dedicated to research and ensure it is able to adapt to changing research and treatment needs.

Partnerships working group

As a non-clinical group, the partnerships working group collaborated with key Veterans organisations to develop a designated Partnerships Hub within the heritage listed building located adjacent to the Veterans’ Mental Health Precinct.

The development of such a hub will ensure continuation of the partnership arrangements currently in place at Ward 17 whilst exploring opportunities to further enhance access to non-clinical support services within the shared space available.