''Incredibly innovative'' when it started, the Family
Mental Health Service in Mosgiel celebrated its 35th
anniversary this month.
Clinical manager Dan Mustapic said the integrated community
service was a new concept when it was established as a joint
initiative between the University of Otago, and the then area
The service was innovative because it brought mental health
services, including psychiatrist and clinical psychologist
clinics, to a community-based setting. Mr Mustapic said the
service was still somewhat unusual, as an intermediate
service between emergency mental health, and inpatient
services, which many places still lacked.
He said about 10% of clients were elderly. Anxiety and
depression accounted for about 70% of referrals.
The centre had about seven staff, and it hosted regular
clinics, and other community outreach services.
Now part of Southern Primary Health Organisation, the centre
had survived many changes in healthcare.
''[The PHO] more or less just left us alone to continue to do
what we're doing. And so we've done that.''
A celebration was held at the service on March 5, attended by
about 30 people.
Formerly known as the Mosgiel Family Health Counselling
Centre, it was set up after a 1976 law change that supported
the development of community-based mental health services.