The first private mental health clinic south of Perth’s Swan River has officially opened, with a mission “to keep people well in their community”.
Bethesda Clinic was launched by Western Australia’s Minister for Health and Mental Health, Amber-Jade Sanderson on Wednesday 8 March 2023.
The $60 million, 75-bed facility welcomed its first patients the following week, offering inpatient services and day therapy programs through a Wellness and Recovery Centre.
“Bethesda Clinic will help meet the growing demand for mental health services in our state,” said Dr Neale Fong, CEO of the clinic’s operator Bethesda Health Care.
As well as serving residents of Perth’s southern suburbs and regions, the clinic will focus on trauma recovery programs for defence personnel and veterans, and provide a dedicated women’s-only ward, a first for the state.
Bethesda has also partnered with Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare to support patients post-discharge, which it says is the first agreement of its kind nationally.
“We want to keep people well in their community,” Dr Fong said.
“The digital element of the clinic is what we are really excited about, and our model of care works towards minimising repeat admissions. We want to see people supported and well outside of a hospital environment.”
In its first stage of operations, Bethesda Clinic is accepting referrals for general psychiatry; alcohol and other drug addiction; mood and anxiety and trauma; with 45 overnight beds available.
Stage two, beginning in mid-2023, will complete the full complement of 75 beds and include a neurostimulation suite with electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) and repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS).
The site is based in the Cockburn Central West precinct, part of a community wellness hub near the Fremantle Dockers' training complex and the Cockburn Aquatic Recreation Centre, with public transport links and easy access to the freeway.
“Bethesda Clinic is a welcome boost to community wellness and the establishment of sustainable health services in Cockburn, something the city is highly invested in,” Mayor Logan Howlett said.
“It further consolidates a growing cohort of health providers in Cockburn Central.”
Read more: New mental health clinic aims to support veterans