Caring for our veterans: praise for The Geelong Clinic’s post-traumatic stress disorder team as part of latest accreditation process

The Geelong Clinic’s post-traumatic stress disorder team and the care it provides veterans and first responders, including police officers, firefighters and paramedics, has received praise during the clinic’s latest accreditation survey.

The Geelong Clinic – a dedicated 52-bed private mental health hospital - has successfully completed an extensive accreditation process by the national body, Australian Council on Healthcare Standards (ACHS).

The ACHS accreditation means the clinic has demonstrated it has robust policies, procedures, systems and frameworks in place that are continually reviewed for quality improvement. Importantly, it ensures local residents have access to the best possible care.

Geelong Clinic General Manager Janine Haigh said the extensive accreditation process for the clinic was unique within the health sector because it involved not only rigorous examination against the national standards but also mental health standards and post-traumatic stress disorder standards.

“Our team work amazingly hard and their dedication and commitment has been rewarded with The Geelong Clinic meeting or exceeding all required standards,” Ms Haigh said.

“This ensures we are continuing to provide safe health services and high standard, clinically robust information to our patients and the community.”

The accreditation survey was completed over three days and involved measurement against 23 standards, all-encompassing multiple criteria.

In particular, the Australian Council on Healthcare Standards accreditation surveyors recognised The Geelong Clinic’s Post Traumatic Stress team, which is headed by Dr Edmond Van Ammers and focuses on providing care for Australian veterans and our first responders such as our police, fire and ambulance personnel.

“The high praise attributed by ACHS to the PTSD team is well rewarded,” Ms Haigh said.

“They work tirelessly to provide an all-encompassing mental health service. Our patients often state that the programs are targeted to their exact, individual needs and are able to make a huge impact on their journey to recovery.”

Ms Haigh said the entire team at The Geelong Clinic was not one to “rest on their

laurels” and following its successful accreditation is now working on enhancing specialty programs for a range of psychiatric conditions such as addiction, anxiety and depression, schizophrenia, mood disorders, eating disorders, personality disorders and post-traumatic stress.

“Our focus is always to provide our local community with the services they need to avoid lengthy travel for patients and time away from their loved ones. Our ACHS accreditation demonstrates clearly that quality health care with a focus on patient safety is available right here in Geelong,” Ms Haigh said.