Orygen welcomes opening of first ACT headspace Early Psychosis service

Orygen welcomes opening of first ACT headspace Early Psychosis service

28 June 2024

Orygen is delighted to announce that young people in the nation’s capital will soon be able to access high quality early psychosis care, with the first ACT headspace Early Psychosis program slated to open later this year thanks to the Australian Government and the Capital Health Network, with support provided by Orygen. 

The opening of the new service was made possible after Orygen successfully advocated for extended funding for the Early Psychosis Youth Service from the Federal Government in 2022 of $205.8 million over three years. 

This funding enabled the establishment of the Early Psychosis Youth Service site in Canberra, which will take the nation a step closer to the Australian government’s early psychosis youth service being available in at least one region within every state and territory, with a final service also under development for Tasmania.  

Orygen Executive Director Patrick McGorry welcomed the announcement and said the new site would make a significant impact on the lives of young people experiencing mental-ill health in Canberra. 

“The Federal Government’s establishment of the new headspace Early Psychosis program is vital and warmly welcomed by Orygen. It comes after many years of scientific research and service development and will allow young people in the ACT to access the same quality of early intervention and stage specific specialist care developed by Orygen,” Professor McGorry said. 

Early Psychosis Youth Services provide specialist support to young people aged 12 to 25 who are experiencing, or who are at increased risk of developing, psychotic illnesses. The care is based on the Early Psychosis Prevention and Intervention Centre (EPPIC) model developed by Orygen and now available in hundreds of locations worldwide, and focuses on early diagnosis  minimising the duration of untreated psychosis and ensuring intensive care for the critical early years after initial diagnosis to maximise recovery This national system of early psychosis care supported by Orygen is achieving outcomes as good or even better than anywhere else in the world.  It is a model of care that should be available to all young Australians with early psychosis, their families and their communities.  

headspace Early Psychosis Canberra will be staffed by a large multidisciplinary team that will include psychiatrists, other specialised mental health professionals, clinical case managers, family workers and youth peer support workers. 

The service will be delivered by Uniting NSW.ACT, who currently deliver headspace Early Psychosis services in Western Sydney.  

The site is due to open later in 2024.