Groud work underway for Step Up Step Down facility

Stuart McGuckinSouth Western Times
Mental Health Minister Roger Cook and Bunbury MLA Don Punch turn the first sods for the Step Up, Step Down facility in Glen Iris.Picture: Stuart McGuckin
Camera IconMental Health Minister Roger Cook and Bunbury MLA Don Punch turn the first sods for the Step Up, Step Down facility in Glen Iris.Picture: Stuart McGuckin Credit: Picture: Stuart McGuckin

After almost two years of planning the groundwork has started for the Step Up Step Down mental health facility in Glen Iris.

Mental Health Minister Roger Cook and Bunbury MLA Don Punch turned the ceremonial first sods on Friday.

The 10-bed facility was first proposed at the end of 2016 and will provide short-term residential care.

Mental Health commissioner Tim Marney said he hoped the program would start at the facility by early 2020.

“It will help people get the right care, at the right time; it’s the right place to address emerging mental health issues,” he said.

“The purpose will be to intervene early so people don’t deteriorate to such an extent that they require a hospital stay.”

An artists impression of what the facility will look like once completed in 2020.
Camera IconAn artists impression of what the facility will look like once completed in 2020.

Mr Cook said the $4.5 million facility would allow care to be given to be people within the communities they live while surrounded by loved ones.

“It will provide care for those people coming in or out of an acute episode,” he said.

“What we know is that when we improve the level of sub-acute services we take the pressure of our hospitals and we get to people earlier in their mental health journey.

“This provides services in the communities where people live, surrounded by loved ones and allows them to get back on track in order to move on in their lives.”

Similar facilities are already in operation at Rockingham, Joondalup and Albany.

Mr Punch said Bunbury and the South West continued to have a great reputation for offering a helping hand to those in need.

“That’s exactly what this facility is about,” he said.

“I’m so pleased that the mental health commissioner and the minister have made it a priority for our South West.

“While it’s sad that it is needed in our communities, people do suffer from mental illness and this will be a fantastic facility to allow them to stay in the community where the best outcomes are achieved.”

Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.

Sign up for our emails