$15.4 M program provide mental health support using telephone or web-based technology.
The purpose of the Teleweb Programme is to provide evidence-based e-mental health support, including peer support projects and telephone crisis counselling to Australians with high prevalence, low severity disorders who are not accessing support or treatment, and those who are experiencing psycho-social crisis. This group is over-represented in a broader group comprising the two thirds of Australians with a mental health disorder who currently do not access services.
Web-based Teleweb services are available ‘en masse’ and are disseminated easily via the Internet in contrast to face to face services. They are able to deliver confidential, flexible, individually tailored mental health support that may not be achievable in the same time frame via other treatment modalities. Access to these services will be greatly enabled by the roll out of the National Broadband Network through increased access to the internet and faster speeds allowing for greater linkages and real time interactive online communication.
The internet is increasingly becoming an accepted medium for mental health service delivery and the efficacy of online mental health interventions has been well supported and is increasingly being recognised as an important and powerful complement to traditional phone based and face-to-face services.
The funding is being provided to further the objectives of the Teleweb Programme. In particular, the Teleweb Programme will support activities which aim to:
- improve mental health outcomes for Australians;
- improve the reach and utilisation of e-mental health supports, particularly in rural/remote areas and with other hard to reach groups such as young men and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people;
- provide cost-effective, high quality, effective, safe and ethically sound services that protect the privacy of consumers;
- provide evidence-based services that respond to current need, and build consumer confidence in e-mental health support;
- increase mental health literacy including knowledge about mental health conditions and how to access services;
- utilise advances in technology to support innovative approaches to mental health care;
- respond to the needs of health professionals/clinicians seeking to refer their patients;
- establish closer links with primary care, and build GP confidence in the benefits of e-mental health;
- reduce the need for expensive mental health treatments in the future by promoting prevention and early intervention approaches; and
- generate data to assess the usage and effectiveness of Teleweb projects for the purposes of review and subsequent planning for future Programme directions.
The following organisations are eligible to apply for Teleweb Programme funding:
- Existing service providers under the Teleweb Programme;
- University Faculties of Mental Health;
- Mental health research institutions;
- Mental Health provider organisations with the infrastructure and capacity to translate appropriate programs into an online environment—including organisations representing the mental health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people or other cultural minorities; and
- Collaborations including at least one of the above categories.
What is eligible for funding?
Applicants for funding under the Teleweb Programme will be considered for funding if project activities:
- provide services to help prevent or treat people with high prevalence, low intensity mental health disorders or in psycho-social crisis using telephone or web-based technology to provide assistance in the form of counselling or self guided treatment programs or related support tools;
- have a demonstrable link to the evidence of current mental health research;
- fill gaps in relation to peer support and services already being implemented to support people with high prevalence mental health disorders or those experiencing psycho-social crisis;
- build on or complement, rather than duplicate, the activities of existing Teleweb services;
- engage a specific population group in an innovative way that is not being offered by existing Teleweb services;
- have a high probability of improving mental health outcomes by addressing the long term impacts of mental health problems at an early intervention stage; and
- are able to demonstrate value for money.
What is not eligible for funding?
Applications for Teleweb Programme funding should not include the following kinds of project activities:
- activities that duplicate existing resources or initiatives funded under the Teleweb programme;
- activities with no demonstrable link to the evidence of current research into mental health treatment and support;
- primary research activities; and
- activities that require Commonwealth investment in capital works, assets and infrastructure.
Teleweb Programme funding available for this one-off open competitive funding round is approximately $15.4 million (GST Exclusive) over the three years, 2012-13 to 2014-15, as indicated in the table below.
Contact us if you need assistance in making your Teleweb Programme application competitive. Applications close at 2pm Canberra Time on Tuesday 15 May 2012