The Centre of Excellence for Emergency Worker Mental Health

What is it and why is it so important?

This ESF Insight Conversation will provide you with an understanding of:

  • the background to the Centre’s establishment

  • the purpose of the Centre and how it will operate to improve mental health outcomes

  • the importance of the centre from both a practitioner and workers perspective

Meet our Speakers

Professor David Forbes is the Director of Phoenix Australia Centre for Post Traumatic Stress, and Deputy Head, Department of Psychiatry, the University of Melbourne. David is a clinical psychologist with extensive experience in the assessment and treatment of mental health problems following trauma. David is an international expert in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and led the development of the Australian Guidelines for the Treatment of Acute Stress Disorder and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. David is a passionate advocate for the use of evidence-based responses the following trauma in order to reduce the mental health effects on survivors, their families and communities. Phoenix Australia has been appointed to operate the new Victorian Centre of Excellence for Emergency Worker Mental Health.

Tony McHugh has been the Manager and Principal Psychologist for the Psychological Trauma Recovery Service at Austin Health. Before that, he held similar positions in the Austin’s PTSD Program. Across these roles Tony has been responsible for the set up and development of psychological treatment programs for severely traumatised ADF and emergency services workers. He is a member of the Centre of Excellence Advisory Group.

Andrew Lawrence is a Detective Sergeant with Victoria Police. His 31 years of experience include work in divisional crime investigation, sex crimes, homicide major collision and heavy vehicle investigation. Andrew will speak about the importance of being linked to the ‘right’ practitioner early.