Bupa Health Foundation announces recipients of $1 million for mental health

Ground breaking research aimed at improving access to mental health care and matching the right care for a person’s need will receive a $1 million funding boost thanks to new grants funded by the Bupa Health Foundation.

These research grants will seek to deliver practical and accessible outcomes. One project will evaluate the use of digital platforms to help young Australians get the right type of mental health care when they need it, while the second grant is for a project assessing the impact of changing mental health providers on consumers and how improved coordination of care could reduce this burden.

Annette Schmiede, Executive Leader of the Bupa Health Foundation (BHF) announced the two successful recipients of the grants. They are:

This is the first time BHF has provided funding of this nature under a new grants submission process.

Annette Schmiede, Bupa Health Foundation Executive Leader
Ongoing investment in the development of mental health models of care is urgently needed to ensure the best outcomes for patients and the health system are achieved. 
Annette Schmiede, Bupa Health Foundation Executive Leader
Annette Schmiede congratulates the recipients of $1million in funding from Bupa health Foundation for mental health models of care research.

"We believe that these projects show great potential in addressing this pressing healthcare matter for Australia," said Ms Schmiede.

“Mental health has been a focus for the BHF for some time. As a health insurer, Bupa has seen mental health claims growth far exceed all other areas of claims. When talking to the community and Bupa customers we hear consistently that they want community-based care.”

“We undertook considerable testing across the research community and the general community to identify the challenges. We then asked the research sector to respond, with high impact research that would translate into improved services.”

Following an overwhelming response from the research community, the two successful projects were selected for their collaborative approach to research aimed at improving the consumers experience and wellbeing through new models of care.

Sydney’s Brain and Mind Centre responded to the BHF’s call with a youth-focused, technology driven proposal. Professor Ian Hickie from the Sydney Brain and Mind Centre said it was important to measure the tangible benefits technology provides in empowering young people to access the best care.

"We want to test whether better coordinated care with new technology saves lives and makes more productive lives by better coordinating the care," said Professor Hickie.

With this project we hope that we can show the right coordination of primary care, specialist care, outpatient settings, or hospital care within districts that actually works.
Professor Ian Hickie, Brain and Mind Centre, University of Sydney

Taking a person-centred approach, the Central Queensland Wide Bay Sunshine Coast PHN use their funding to evaluate and improve on care delivery following the recent introduction of a stepped care model in their region.

Assoc. Professor Pattie Hudson, CEO of Central Queensland Wide Bay Sunshine Coast Primary Health Network, said little is known about how consumers move through various stages of mental health care, or the emotional toll moving between providers may take.

"The research project will use evidence to determine the patterns of service usage across the system, but it will also be heavily informed by the voices and experiences of those that use these services. As far as we know, this will be the first system-wide evaluation of the mental health system from a consumer perspective," said Assoc. Professor Hudson.

Ian Hickie thanks Bupa Health Foundation for funding Best Care, First time mental health research
Follow my journey, Central Queensland Wide Bay Sunshine Coast PHN mental health research