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Community Settings

Mental health care centres or treatment facilities are not as they are portrayed in horror movies. In fact, most Australian people access mental health treatment through their GP (ABS, 2004). Some people also access community services, which can offer a range of services such as educational programs and support for independent living.  


Statistics (AIHW, 2014):

  • Mental illness is frequently treated in community and hospital-based ambulatory care settings. Collectively, these services are referred to as community mental health care.

  • About 8.7 million community mental health care service contacts were recorded in 2013–14. The rate of contacts per 1,000 population increased by 5.5% between 2009–10 and 2013–14.

  • The most common principal diagnosis reported for patients receiving service contacts was schizophrenia, followed by depressive episode and bipolar affective disorders.


Placement opportunities:

  • Watch the video below to see an example of a community mental health setting that includes an exercise physiology service.



This video has been included with permission of the Sydney Local Health District on the understanding it is used for educational purposes only.





  1. Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2004, Health: Mental Health, accessed 22 November 2015, Available from: <>

  2. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare 2014. Mental health services—in brief 2014. Cat. no. HSE 154. Canberra: AIHW. Available from:

  3. Sydney Local Health District (2015) Lifestyle Program: Community Mental Health video                     Available from: (accessed on 27/11/2015)

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