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It is estimated that one in six Australians experience some degree of hearing loss and estimates of the signing Deaf community range between 6,500 and 15,400.
It has been reported that up to 70% of adult Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have hearing problems and deafness, often relating to poorly managed childhood infections.
The Deafness and Mental Health Statewide Consultation Service is the only service of its kind in Australia. Deaf and hard of hearing mental health consumers in Queensland have not previously had access to this type of service before.
The Deafness and Mental Health Statewide Consultation Service strives to promote appropriate and accessible mental health care for Deaf and hard of hearing people throughout Queensland.
The mission of the service is to assist people who are Deaf or hard of hearing to access culturally affirmative and inclusive mental health care and treatment.
This is facilitated through:
The service offers assistance to treating teams and private practitioners in their consultations with adults who are Deaf or hard of hearing who may be experiencing symptoms of a mental illness.
This can be provided as a face-to-face service or via video conference.
Consultations focus on:
The service provides a variety of online training modules, in-services and face to face workshops.
The topics provide information on:
The service offers limited therapy programs and counselling that are culturally and linguistically appropriate. The team works with other health professionals, including psychologists and counsellors, to assist them to provide sessions that meet the needs of Deaf and hard of hearing people.
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