Alcohol, Drugs and Mental Health

One in five Australians experience mental health problems at some stage during their life and almost one in ten consume alcohol at levels considered harmful to their health. St Vincent’s manages around 30 inpatients and even higher numbers of outpatients with mental or substance abuse issues - many of them homeless - every day.

In 2010 St Vincent’s opened the O’Brien Centre, Australia’s first fully integrated, public mental health, alcohol & drug and community care treatment facility, focusing in particular on the needs of the homeless and vulnerable populations.

St Vincent’s will now complement the current investment in public services by developing private mental health services, firstly through a treatment facility for young people, and then through the planned development of dedicated facilities for the care of adults.

We will also seek to increase our investment in teaching and research – in collaboration with our key academic and research partners – to better target the prevention and treatment of mental illness and substance abuse problems, and with a particular focus on urban mental health research through our own Faces in the Street Urban Mental Health Research Institute. The University of New South Wales will remain a key research partner, particularly through the work of the Clinical Research Unit for Anxiety and Depression (CRUfAD).