About this Event
Why Australia is not an equally well country: What the poor physical health of people living with mental illness tells us about good mental health care, system governance and the design of health services.
Every day in Australia, 30 people with mental illness die prematurely of preventable physical health conditions. The poor physical health and premature death of people living with mental illness highlights the failure of Australian health systems to recognise and address the elevated risk of poor health and premature death for people living with mental illness. With a life expectancy gap of 20 years, people with severe mental illness are 11 times more likely to die of sudden cardiac failure, and eight times more likely to die prematurely due to cancer (even though the incidence of cancer is the same or lower than the general population). Further, poor physical health has been identified as the factor most commonly associated with completed suicides.
This lecture will showcase the best Australian and international initiatives to improve the health and save lives of people living with mental illness and summarise the latest research findings. For clinicians, consumers, carers and advocates it will propose ways to enhance the efficacy of mental health care, improve systems, and address the structural discrimination currently experienced by people with a lived experience of mental illness.
Dr Russell Roberts is Professor of Mental Health Leadership at Charles Sturt University in Orange, NSW. He is the National Director of Equally Well Australia a Commonwealth funded team established to facilitate the implementation the Equally Well National Consensus Statement: Improving the physical health and wellbeing of people living with mental illness in Australia. He is Chair of the International Collaborative Learning Network on physical health and mental illness, Chair of the Australian Rural Mental Health Conference, a Chief Investigator on the Rural Universities Network mental health research collaborative and is on the rural organising committee for the International Initiative for Mental Leadership (IIMHL). He previously completed two terms as Editor in Chief of the Australian Journal for Rural Health and co-authored a recent review of rural mental health services in South Australia.
Russell previously served as Executive Director of Mental Health Services in Central/Western NSW, leading an organisation of over 1,100 staff and $110m pa budget delivering services across the spectrum of mental health care. Facilities in his organisation ranged from Australia’s largest integrated mental health hospital to community teams in Australia’s most remote locations such as Bourke and Lightning Ridge. In this role he introduced the highly awarded Mental Health Emergency Care – Rural Access Program and the Aboriginal Mental Health Workforce Development Initiative.
Russell has extensive experience as a researcher with over 100 refereed journal articles, books and book chapters, 70 conference presentations, 19 keynote speeches, $12.7m in research grant funding and approx. 5,200 citations of his research work. With a unique career profile as clinician, researcher and executive director, he is referenced as one of the 50 most influential rural Australians.
There is NO FEE to attend the lecture.
A light supper will be provided at the end of the lecture.
Event Venue & Nearby Stays
U City, 43 Franklin Street, Adelaide, Australia