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June 2016

Get into Work

Welcome to the Individual Placement and Support (IPS) bi-monthly newsletter, published by the peak body for community mental health, the Western Australian Association for Mental Health (WAAMH).

In this issue:

IPS WORKS coming soon!
WA Mental Health Commission reinvest in IPS
Baseline fidelity reviews assist IPS providers
IPS promoted at National Consumer and Carer Conference
IPS pays off!
IPS to feature at The Mental Health Services Conference in New Zealand


IPS WORKS coming soon!

WAAMH's IPS Development Unit is undergoing a re-brand and will soon be launching IPS WORKS. A new website will be available at 


WA Mental Health Commission reinvest in IPS

WAAMH would like to acknowledge and thank the WA Mental Health Commission for their ongoing support and commitment to IPS. The Mental Health Commission have extended funding to provide technical assistance to mental health services engaged in delivering IPS services in Western Australia. 

The IPS development unit has seen the value of mental health recovery through employment thanks to the ongoing support of the commission over the last three years. 

Picture:   Philleen Dickson (IPS Program Manager of WAAMH), Tim Marney (WA Mental Health Commissioner), Rod Astbury (CEO of WAAMH) and Kathryn Ashworth (IPS Project Development Officer of WAAMH).


Baseline fidelity reviews assist IPS providers

Picture: (front row) Cassie MacDonald, Carmen Stobie, Emma Craig, (back row) Emma Ketley, Fiona McDonald, Shanae Bird, Carli Sheers, Kathryn Ashworth, Janelle McCrow.

Employment programs with a higher IPS fidelity have consistently better overall employment outcomes. 

The Osborne Park Clinic (OPC) committed to a baseline fidelity review in April 2016. Emma Ketley, Community Development Officer at Osborne Park Community Mental Health Service, said the Clinic recognised the importance of fidelity within the IPS Model for achieving the best employment outcomes and support for clients.

"Having WAAMH's fidelity review support enhanced the working relationship within the IPS site, where staff realised they were part of a bigger team in achieving employment outcomes for clients," said Emma. "The OPC team wanted to see how they had progressed so far, whilst ensuring the service was meeting the core principles of IPS, and were thrilled to achieve good fidelity at the baseline review".  

Maria Lloyd-Jones, Max Employment's National Disability Support Manager said they had also made positive changes to the way they worked using the IPS Model following a good fidelity review. "We aim to achieve higher job rates and get more people into work based on consumer preferences and evidence based practice,” said Maria. 

Click here to read the article "Why Assess Fidelity?"


IPS promoted at National Consumer and Carer Conference

Picture:  Lorraine Powell, NMHCCF WA Consumer Representative; and Carli Sheers, National Register WA Consumer Representative.

The Mental Health Australia (MHA) National Register and National Mental Health Consumer and Carer Forum (NMHCCF) 2016 Annual Issues and Opportunities Workshop was held at the Parkroyal, Melbourne Airport on 9 to 10 May 2016.

The program was developed by and for members to:
• discuss national issues of importance for mental health consumers and carers
• participate in skill building activities, and;
• network and share representative experiences.

Carli Sheers, a WA Consumer Representative of the National Register, highlighted IPS at the forum and gave a brief description of the evidence based supported employment model including the core principles of zero exclusion, time unlimited and individualised support.

Click below for more information about the:
- NMHCCF; and
- National Register.


IPS pays off!

A recently published article, ‘The financial viability of evidenced-based supported employment for people with mental illnesses in a blended funding system’, authored by Vanessa Parletta from The ORS Group, and Dr Geoffrey Waghorn from Queensland Centre for Mental Health Research, concluded that IPS employment services were most financially viable for participants with more severe psychiatric disabilities. 

A disability employment service provider assessed their pre-IPS service results over an eighteen-month period, as well as services enhanced with IPS practices over the same period, and both were compared to the national cohort of disability employment participants.

Supported employment services enhanced by IPS practices were found to achieve significantly more job commencements and were most cost effective per person and per 26-week employment milestone, for those consumers with greater assistance needs.

Read the full article here


IPS to feature at The Mental Health Services Conference in New Zealand

Philleen Dickson, IPS Program Manager at WAAMH, will present on 'IPS Works – Recovery Through Employment' at The Mental Health Services (TheMHS) Conference in New Zealand in August 2016.

Philleen said that recovery based employment practice is not yet given equal value for mental health recovery alongside clinical interventions, and that this needs to change. "Paid employment is a vehicle for recovery and an indicator of health," Ms Dickson said.

In 2011, WAAMH made IPS implementation a priority for sector development which led to the establishment of the IPS Development Unit, the only one of its kind in Australia. This was in response to abundant evidence that most people who live with a mental health condition want and are able to work.

Experiences of implementing IPS in metropolitan and regional areas of Australia will be shared at the conference, as well as comparisons between establishing IPS partnerships versus developing fully integrated IPS services.

Philleen will also co-present a paper with Peter Gianfrancesco, NSW State Manager of Neami National, on 'The right to work! Innovative program breaks down barriers to employment', exploring how Neami National chose to invest in IPS, engage technical support from WAAMH and directly fund an employment specialist in their community recovery team in Hurstville NSW.

For more information about TheMHS Conference, click here

Kind regards

IPS Development Unit

WA Association for Mental Health

1 Nash Street Perth WA 6000



Tel 08 6246 3000
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