We understand that mental health is a sensitive topic and the idea of going to a mental health hospital can be scary.
At Cabrini Women’s Mental Health (WMH), our dedicated team is here to help you through your recovery and make sure you feel safe and cared for when you visit.
Our innovative programs are tailored to the individual needs of each woman. Whether you need an inpatient stay, weekly group therapy or one-on-one counselling, you can rest assured that you will be provided with the necessary tools to handle challenges in the future.
We have compiled a list of frequently asked questions below to explain how we can help you and what to expect when you come to our centre.
Frequently asked questions
Everyone is different and mental health conditions can cause different symptoms for different people.
You may have a mental health condition if you are experiencing one or more of the below for a prolonged period:
feelings of sadness, hopelessness or emptiness
feeling irritable or angry all the time
feeling anxious and unable to focus on your daily tasks
feeling like you are not capable of doing anything right, even though you are trying your absolute best
find yourself avoiding social situations and spending more time alone than usual or you may just feel like you are just not yourself
This can be hard to figure out, and sometimes other people close to us might notice it first. If you are worried that things are not getting better as you expected, speak to your General Practitioner (GP) or your mental health clinician.
If you have a loved one or friend that you are concerned about, it is best to speak to them first, and be there to support them as they explore their options.
It is not always easy to know whether you have a mental health condition that should be treated, but if you are reading this, chances are you have already made the choice to reach out for help.
Figuring out what kind of help you need can be daunting and confusing, it is best to speak with your GP or mental health clinician to see what options are available to you.
Mental illness is much like physical illness, in that it is not something you can instantly treat with medication and be done with. It may require a combination of medication and therapy to really get better, which sometimes may mean taking the time to address the underlying issues.
No, you do not have to be diagnosed with a mental health condition before you can stay with us. However, you will need a referral from a GP or medical practitioner to enter our service.
Once you are admitted into our service, our staff will complete an in-depth assessment and discuss any diagnosis and treatment options with you.
We treat a series of mental health conditions which fall into the following four categories:
Mood disorders including depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, menopause, perimenopause, premenstrual syndrome (PMS), and premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD)
Burnout and stress
Complex trauma including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
For more information on these mental health conditions click here.
Our programs are designed for women between the ages of 18 and 65.
Mental illness is real, and it is not something you should feel ashamed of or try to hide from anyone. However, this is your story, and it is your decision who you tell about your mental health condition. You may be surprised, but most people will likely be understanding and supportive of you.
It is also important to remember that if someone does say something insensitive, it could be because they are not comfortable with the idea of taking care of themselves or others when they do not feel well.
Mental illness is real, and it is not something you should feel ashamed of or try to hide from your employer. If you choose to tell your employer about your diagnosis, or they find out, try not to worry about it, as most employers are very understanding when it comes to mental health issues.
We would recommend talking to your employer about what you need, whether it is a flexible schedule, time out or working from home occasionally. Even just having a conversation every few weeks, where they can check in on how things are going and how they can help you can make things easier for you, could be a good strategy.
When you are admitted to Cabrini WMH, we can discuss how to have these conversations with your employer. It is important to know that we will never breach your privacy or confidentiality.
Your best option is to be as honest and open as possible and let your employer know that you need time off. You do not need to go into detail about what is going on with your mental illness if you do not wish.
Remember, mental illness is not something that can be cured overnight. It requires dedication from you and your treating team and your employer may have a role to play in supporting you through a successful recovery journey.
If required, we can provide you a medical certificate and can discuss this with you further.
There are a lot of women who feel like they cannot afford to take time off work, but if you are dealing with a mental health illness it is in your best interest to find time to deal with the issue. You may be surprised, but most employers are very understanding when it comes to mental health problems.
Your employer wants to ensure you are healthy; it is in their best interest and yours! If you have exhausted your leave because you have been unwell, you may want to talk with your manager about what other options are available to you. You may also wish to look at our community programs.
The first point of contact for a referral to our service is usually your GP. However, we also accept direct referrals from mental health professionals including psychiatrists, psychologists or counsellors.
Once we receive your referral, one of our staff members will be in contact with you to organise an intake assessment. This helps us to determine what programs would be best suited for your individual needs to achieve your goals.
Once the assessment is completed, our team will provide you with some date options for your admission. Sometimes it can be as quick as the next day if that suits you.
If you are concerned about a family member, colleague or a friend you can contact us on (03) 9508 5100 Monday to Friday between the hours of 9 am and 4.30 pm. Our intake coordinator can help you with advice on how to arrange for a referral to our service.
It is important to know that we will never breach your privacy or confidentiality.Your participation in any of our programs remains confidential and your case will only ever be discussed with your treating medical or health professional team.
At Cabrini WMH, we believe that you should be in control of your treatment plan. Deciding on your treatment is a collaborative process. We will discuss what your goals are and what you have or have not done in the past.
Our team will listen to what you have to say about your life and the challenges that you face. Then we will work with you to identify which programs will best help you and create a treatment plan that is tailored specifically for you.
Any medications that need to be changed will be assessed and discussed with your admitting clinician.
The recommended length of stay is between 7–10 days. However, if you require less time, this can be discussed with our intake co-ordinator.
Our intensive inpatient day program is designed to get you back to your optimal health. Clients spend six hours per day in various group activities such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), dialectical behavioural therapy (DBT) and acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) and other complementary activities such as cooking, yoga, exercise and mindfulness.
You will also have a case coordinator who will meet with you one-on-one during your stay to help you to work on your goals. Your psychiatrist will also meet with you during your stay.
Yes. Peer support is particularly important during the healing process. Women learn not only from our therapists, but also from the experience of others and are able to grow together.
Yes, our centre has 30 private rooms all with their own ensuites.
We welcome visitors to the Lisa Thurin Women’s Health Centre, as we understand that family and friends are important to your recovery. You are welcome to have visitors from 6 pm to 9 pm daily.
We understand these visiting hours may not suit everyone. Please speak with your nursing staff if you have any issues.
To gain the optimum outcome of your admission and participate fully in your programs, leave is discouraged.
However, we know everyone’s circumstances are different and, if leave is required and approved by your treating psychiatrists, you will be able to leave the facility after you complete leave documentation.
Inpatient stay is designed for clients to focus on their mental wellbeing and spend time on healing and getting better.
Therefore, we ask that when you stay with us, you fully engage in activities and spend time with your peers.
We encourage you to switch off, take time out from your day-to-day life and fully concentrate on learning new skills.
Not everyone follows the same path. Some people may be able to go back to work the next day, but others may need some extra support.
We encourage all women who access our service to transition back via our community program, so that we can be in contact and support you for any hurdles that may be in your way.
You can discuss what works for you best with your care coordinator.
In addition to our inpatient stay program, we also offer a community program. You can transition into this to continue your healing process.
Depending on your individual needs and goals, you can opt to attend a three-hour weekly group therapy session for up to six months. Alternatively, you can enrol in our HER Therapy program which offers one-on-one individual therapy where you can see a mental health clinician ongoing.
You can discuss what works for you best with your care coordinator.
If you have been discharged from our service, please discuss your concerns with your primary care practitioner such as your GP or treating mental health professional.
If you are still involved with our community program such as Her Therapy or weekly group therapy, please speak with one of our clinicians, who will be able to discuss the options available to you.
We understand that sometimes things do not work out the way we had planned. If you feel that you need additional support, please contact us and we will be able to discuss the options available to you.
As a private hospital, we have arrangements with most major private health insurers. A fund eligibility check can be performed by our intake team prior to your admission.
Subject to your level of cover, some out of pocket costs may be incurred. This could include an excess or co-payment.
If your private health insurance does not cover you for this service, you may be able to apply for a mental health waiver, however this will need to be discussed with your private health insurance provider.
If your private health insurance requests, our provider number is: 0035790X.
Clients who seek to self-fund their admission will be provided with an estimate of the cost of their program by contacting the intake team on (03) 9508 5100.
Group Therapy – subject to your level of private health insurance cover, our weekly group therapy program may be covered by your private health insurance. For more information on your cover and any out-of-pockets costs please contact your insurer.
HER Therapy (one-on-one therapy) – this program has an out-of-pocket cost; however, it can be rebated under Medicare (up to 10 sessions per calendar year). If you would like to access HER Therapy under Medicare, you will need a mental health care plan developed by your GP. Alternatively, you may also be eligible for a rebate through your extras cover through your private health insurance. Please contact your insurer to discuss this.