Inpatient Care

Most young people receiving services at Orygen Specialist Program can be successfully treated while they continue to live at home. Sometimes this is not possible and it is very helpful to spend a short time in hospital.

The two main reasons why someone might need to go to hospital are:

  • To make sure the young person is safe
  • To provide intensive treatment to reduce their level of distress

Orygen Specialist Program utilises two Inpatient Units: Banksia Unit, which is situated in the new Royal Children’s Hospital in Parkville, and the Orygen Inpatient Unit (IPU) located in Footscray on the Western Hospital site. The decision determining which unit a young person will be admitted to depends upon their age, illness and bed availability.

Hospital care focuses on getting people better and home as soon as possible, and encourages young people and families to be involved in this process. Inpatient care is provided by a multidisciplinary team of doctors, nurses, youth peer workers, family peer workers, social workers, occupational therapists, and an Aboriginal social and emotional wellbeing worker. The Orygen IPU has facilities to make young people feel as comfortable as possible. For example, there is table tennis, board games, sports equipment, TV and books as well as a Group Program which includes various activities to engage young people. All meals are provided, and special diets are catered for.

There are direct phone lines and flexible visiting hours to help family and friends to stay in contact. There are interpreters available for anyone who might need them.

Prior to leaving hospital there is a discharge meeting to discuss any issues about the young person’s ongoing treatment, follow-up and recovery. This meeting involves the young person, carers, the treating team and any other relevant workers.

The unit is located in 35 Mavis St, Footscray, on the Western Hospital site. Telephone 03 8345 7550/1.

Who supports the family and friends of a young person in IPU?

Orygen Specialist Program understands that an admission of a loved one into IPU can be a very stressful time. To support you a Family Peer Support Worker is available to meet with you on Mondays and Tuesdays. She has the ‘lived experience‘ of caring for a young person with mental ill health and can assist you with emotional and practical support and information. Just ask the nursing staff or contact her directly on 8345 7400. A Family Peer Support worker is also available at other Orygen Specialist Program sites after discharge.