In 2019, the Office of the Chief Psychiatrist commenced an investigation into delays in transfer of care for mental health consumers at South Australian Emergency Departments.
The terms of the review were as follows:
- Determine the frequency and duration of delayed TOC/external triaging/ramping of people with a mental illness across the system and at different hospitals;
- Describe the handover processes in place at different sites;
- Determine the effect these events have on consumers, family and staff;
- Describe the compliance or otherwise with the Mental Health Act (MHA) 2009, and relevant policies during periods of delayed transfer of care, and;
- Provide recommendations to assist in the prevention of delays in the TOC, or if ramping occurs, mitigate the effects of these delays, including actions that could be taken by SAAS and receiving hospitals.
The investigation provides 24 recommendations to improve transfer of care for mental health consumers at South Australian Emergency Departments.
During 2020 a summary of feedback and response to the 24 recommendations arising from the investigation was developed.