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Director of psychiatric services for the ACT



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PRESS STATEMENT 3Y THE COMMONWEALTH MINISTER FOR HEALTH

: DR. A.J. FORBES .

D IRECTOR OF PSYCHIATRIC SERVICES FOR THE A.C.T.

The Minister for Health, Dr. Forbes, announced

today that the Government had agreed to the appointment of -a.

Director of Psychiatric Services, to be attached to. the A.C.T.

Health Services Branch.

He said the purpose of the projected appointment,

for which applications would be called from specialists in

psychiatry, was to expedite the planning and development of

an adequate programme of psychiatric services for the A.C.T.

It was envisaged that this would include the

planning of acute treatment wards in the various hospitals,

"day" clinics and rehabilitation centres, increased child

guidance services and other facilities.

Dr. Forbes said these proposals stemme-d“from

the visit to Canberra in February of Professor W.A. Cramond,

Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Adelaide, to

report on the psychiatric needs of the A.C.T. Professor

Cramond's report recommended, as a first.step towards the

development of a comprehensive psychiatric service for the

A.C.T., the appointment of a fully qualified psychiatrist,

as Director of Psychiatric Services, to begin the necessary

preliminary planning.

Professor Cramond's report was submitted to the

recently-appointed A.C.T. Hospitals Advisory Committee for

study. The committee endorsed the report in principle and

recommended the appointment of a Director of Psychiatric

Services, to undertake the detailed planning of full scale

psychiatric facilities. .

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Dr. Forbes said it was his intention that when

the new Director of Psychiatric Services took up his post he

should be given an opportunity to make a thorough study of the

A.C.T. situation before making concrete recommendations con­

cerning the future development of the Territory's psychiatric ·

services.

The Director of Psychiatric Services would, of

course, work closely with the A.C.T. Hospitals Advisory

Committee, the Management Board of Canberra Hospital and the

authorities who would later administer the new Woden and

Belconnen Hospitals, in the formulation and the carrying out

of.whatever programme he submitted and the Government ·

subsequently approved. Similarly it could be assumed that

the Director of Psychiatric Services would seek the views

of the A.C.T. Council of Social Services, Church and other

authorities administering old people's homes in Canberra,

as well as of organisations such as the Handicapped Children's

Association. The effectiveness of psychiatric services in the

A.C.T. clearly would depend substantially on the co-operation

of these and similar community organisations and he confidently

anticipated such co-operation would be readily forthcoming.

Canberra, November 27, 1967