Embrace’s research has been praised for its contribution to the WA state government’s mental health research strategy released on Monday.
Embrace’s findings report, Identifying the Priorities for Future Infant, Child and Youth Mental Health Research in Western Australia, outlines key priorities according to the community for future research into infant, child and youth mental health. The project featured extensive consultation with young people, parents and carers, and mental health professionals. The findings report informs Embrace's research strategy and both documents were published in late 2022.
You can read the community priority setting project findings report on this page.
Curtin University’s Professor of Clinical Psychology Peter McEvoy, who led the WA Mental Health Research Strategy 2023-2027, said Embrace’s “really thorough project and consultation process” had been pivotal in formulating the strategy document.
Discussing the strategy at the Science on the Swan conference on Tuesday, Professor McEvoy said the project’s aim was to create “a strategy the whole sector could get behind”.
“We had a lot of consultation to do to make sure we got it right,” he said. “Our vision of WA is a global centre of excellence in mental health research translation over [the strategy’s] life course.”
Embrace Co-Directors Professor Ashleigh Lin and Professor Helen Milroy said the strategy’s release was an exciting opportunity for Embrace to continue doing the mental health research the community wants to see happen.
“This state strategy, alongside the recently announced additional budget towards mental health, indicate the importance of mental health research and it’s pleasing to see the state government devoting attention to the sector,” Professor Lin said.
Infant, child and adolescent mental health was provided as one of three priorities in the state government strategy, along with improving Aboriginal and First Nation’s social and emotional wellbeing, mirroring Embrace’s own research strategy.
The third priority outlined in the WA government’s strategy was the mental health of older adults.
Professor Milroy said in a panel discussion at the Science on the Swan conference that she hoped the new state strategy would incentivise more sharing of clinicians’ data.
“We are sitting on an enormous amount of data that doesn’t get used as well as it could,” Professor Milroy said.
“Being able to turn that around and showcase some of the really good work that’s been done so clinicians and services can showcase the important outcomes being achieved.”
Embrace Co-Director Professor Ashleigh Lin speaks during a Science on the Swan panel discussion, involving (L-R) Georgia Anderson, Howard Lance and Embrace Co-Director Professor Helen Milroy.