Resolve program: a first in Australia!

Christine miniawya on floor at youth forum.jpg

The Resolve Program is about reducing the length of time people stay in hospital.

Program Manager Christine Miniawy (pictured above) describes it this way: “On the one hand there are people who are home and well, and on the other hand there are people who are unwell and in hospital. We know that on the recovery journey people don’t fall neatly into either category, so in between there is a large gap. The obvious question is: surely there is something we can do to be proactive, so that people are not just waiting for their next hospital admission?”

The Resolve Program is the answer. Christine calls Resolve an “experiment” across seven years which involves a “huge amount of investment into a completely different way of providing mental health services.”

One outstanding feature is that the heart and soul of Resolve will be its peer workers. There will be nine altogether, five based at Orange to cover Western NSW, and four based at Cranebrook near Penrith covering the Nepean/Blue Mountains area.

Social Impact Bonds (SIBs) are a different way of meeting the cost of social service programs. They are designed to raise private capital for intensive support and preventative programs which address areas of pressing social need. More detailed information about the Resolve Social Benefit Bond is available from the Social Ventures Australia Website: www.socialventures.com.au/work/resolve-sbb/

Resolve is really three programs in one: Firstly there is “warm line” which is a telephone service that allows people to talk through their anxieties before they become crises. Secondly, there is an outreach service, where staff make home visits. Thirdly, there is a residential service.

“This is not a replacement for hospital,” says Christine, “but a way that people can hopefully avoid a hospital admission by spending some time away from home.”

It is the first Flourish Australia venture to be financed through social impact bonds (see article in June Panorama). In fact, Flourish Australia General Manager (Operations) Andrew O’Brien says, “This new type of partnership with the NSW Government is an Australian (if not international) first, and we’re committed to making it a great success.”

Resolve is the result of cooperation between Nepean Blue Mountains Local Health District, Western NSW Local Health District, Social Ventures Australia and Flourish Australia and it commenced in October 2017 in Penrith and Orange.

It is estimated that there will be 530 participants over the first five years. On average, it is hoped there will be a 25 per cent reduction in the time they spend in hospital. This will lead to a saving of $30,000,000, which will include a saving of up to $15,000,000 to taxpayers as well as a return to investors.

RESOLVE MENU

1. Reduce the time you spend in hospital AND…

2. Save the taxpayer millions!

To fund this venture, Social Ventures Australia raised $7,000,000 in social impact bonds. Sound like a good investment?

To be eligible, participants need to be aged 18 to 65 and have spent between 40 and 270 days in hospital during the preceding 12 months.

“It will be a 24/7 operation and we will work closely with clinicians, but Flourish Australia’s track record in recognising the value of peer work is what makes our approach unique.”

Resolve training IMG_0861[1].jpgAbove: The Resolve Program Team pictured in Sydney at a training course. Standing from left to right are Gavin Kelly (Penrith), Timothy Morandini (Penrith), Samuel Sutton (Orange), Shane Morrow (Penrith), Debbie Stein (Orange), Ben Wilshire (Orange), Bonnie Wallace (Orange) and Ruth Getachew (Penrith). Crouching in the front are Jolyon Briggs (Orange, on the left) and Evan Fulton, Manager at Flourish Australia’s pioneering peer-run service at Hervey Bay, who was the trainer.

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