6. Scope of the collection¶
Two features define the scope of the National Outcomes and Casemix Collection reporting requirements.
- They are designed to cover specialised mental health services managed by, or in receipt of funds from, State or Territory health authorities.
- Within specialised mental health services, the focus of the collection is on the activities of Mental Health Service Organisations.
Both of these features also define the scope of long established data collections on mental health services in Australia, being central to the current NMDS – Mental Health Establishments and its predecessor, the annual National Survey of Mental Health Services that was conducted between 1994 and 2005.
6.1. The definition of specialised mental health services¶
6.1.1. Specialised mental health services are those with a primary function to provide treatment, rehabilitation or community health support targeted towards people with a mental disorder or psychiatric disability. These activities are delivered from a service or facility that is readily identifiable as both specialised and serving a mental health care function.
The concept of a specialised mental health service is not dependent on the inclusion of the service within the State or Territory mental health budget.
A service is not defined as a specialised mental health service solely because its clients include people affected by a mental illness or psychiatric disability. The definition excludes specialist drug and alcohol services for people with intellectual disabilities, except where they are established to assist people affected by a mental disorder who also have drug and alcohol related disorders or intellectual disability.
These services can be a sub-unit of a hospital even where the hospital is not a specialised mental health establishment itself (e.g. designated psychiatric units and wards, outpatient clinics etc).
6.1.2. Specialised mental health services include:
6.2. The definition of a Mental Health Service Organisation¶
6.2.1. Within specialised mental health services, the focus of the collection is on the activities of Mental Health Service Organisations. This concept was first defined in NOCC Version 1.0, and subsequently, formally recognised under the National Health Data Dictionary (as an object class with the METeOR identifier 286449) and used to guide all national mental health data collections.
6.2.2. For the purposes of the current specifications, the definition of a Mental Health Service Organisation is identical to that given under the NHDD. That definition is summarised below.
6.2.3. A Mental Health Service Organisation is a separately constituted specialised mental health service that is responsible for the clinical governance, administration and financial management of service units providing specialised mental health care.
6.2.4. A Mental Health Service Organisation may consist of one or more service units based in different locations and providing services in admitted patient, residential and ambulatory settings. For example, a Mental Health Service Organisation may consist of several hospitals or two or more community centres.
6.2.5. Where the Mental Health Service Organisation consists of multiple service units, those units can be considered to be components of the same organisation where they:
- operate under a common clinical governance arrangement;
- aim to work together as interlocking services that provide integrated, coordinated care to consumers across all mental health service settings; and
- share clinical records or, in the case where is more than one physical clinical record for each patient, staff may access (if required) the information contained in all of the physical records held by the organisation for that patient.
6.2.6. For most States and Territories, the Mental Health Service Organisation is equivalent to the Area or District Mental Health Service. These are usually organised to provide the full range of admitted patient, residential and ambulatory services to a given catchment population. However, the term may also be used to refer to health care organisations which provide only one type of mental health service (e.g. acute admitted patient care) or which serve a specialised or state-wide function.
6.2.7. As noted in the next section, Mental Health Service Organisation is a critical concept in the NOCC reporting arrangements as it is a key field used to uniquely identify each Episode of Mental Health care for each consumer.
|||Use of the term ‘designated’ to refer to mental health services in this document is not intended to imply any specific status under the State or Territory mental health legislation. Instead, it refers to the service as having as its primary function the delivery of treatment or care to people affected by mental illness.|
|||Aged care residential services (eg, psychogeriatric nursing homes) in receipt of funding under the Aged Care Act and subject to Australian Government reporting requirements (ie, report to the System for the Payment of Aged Residential Care (SPARC) collection) are considered to be ‘out of scope’ for reporting under NOCC on the condition that they are accredited or are formally engaged in a quality improvement process aimed at achieving accreditation under Aged Care standards.|