Australia’s New South Wales (NSW) Government has announced the beginning of construction work on the new Child and Adolescent Mental Health Facility (CAMHS) at Nepean Hospital.   

The start of construction of this unit, which looks to enhance mental health services for young people in Western Sydney, was marked by a sod turn event.   

Nepean Hospital, situated in Kingswood near Penrith in NSW, offers a variety of services to those residing in Sydney’s western suburbs.  

With the CAMHS, the hospital aims to specifically cater to the mental health needs of 12 to 17-year-olds in the region. 

CAMHS’ construction phase has begun with preparatory works, including the demolition of old structures and the relocation of the Aboriginal Reconciliation Garden to the space next to Building D.  

The new facility will house ten single bedrooms with ensuites, consultation rooms, a secure indoor communal area, two private outdoor courtyards, and workspaces. 

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Additional features include a dedicated sensory room, a learning centre, and a media room. 

The NSW government said that CAMHS has been designed with input from young people and carers.  

The unit will be situated adjacent to the current mental health facility and its Triage and Assessment Centre.  

Admissions to the CAMHS unit will be for young individuals with acute mental health issues, post-assessment at an Emergency Department or the Nepean Mental Health Centre’s Triage and Assessment Centre.  

Referrals for planned admissions can be made by a community Child and Youth Mental Health Service team or a doctor. 

The CAMHS is being developed as part of the NSW government’s A$700m ($459m) Statewide Mental Health Infrastructure Programme, which aims to reform mental health care services across the state. 

Nepean Blue Mountains Local Health District Mental Health director Matt Russell said: “We greatly value the voice of consumers and carers, and their input has been integral throughout the whole planning process. We want to ensure this building is providing models of care and support to aid people in their recovery.”