The MHCC’s annual report for 2018–19, along with a summary document, have just been tabled in parliament and are available in the publications section of our website. 

In 2018–19 the MHCC:

  • received 2195 new enquiries and complaints – more than ever before
  • achieved 91 per cent positive outcomes and actions for consumers, families and carers from complaints, either through them being fully or partially resolved or through assistance to raise directly with the service
  • 167 actions to improve Victorian public mental health services, including 77 formal recommendations, 88 service improvements and accepting two undertakings from services to take specific actions in response to complaints, with more currently being negotiated
  • received twice-yearly local complaints reports relaying 1,842 in-scope complaints from 100% of Victorian public mental health services
  • reached thousands of people through our education and engagement activities.

“The complaints made to the MHCC and to services tell us that much more needs to be done to ensure that safe and recovery-oriented practices, supported decision making and trauma-informed care are truly embedded in service provision for consumers, and that there is greater understanding of the supportive role family members, carers and others play”,  says Commissioner Lynne Coulson Barr.

“However, we know that the positive resolution of complaints can make a powerful difference to people’s wellbeing, recovery and future engagement with services, as well as create lasting change to mental health services and systems for others”, the Commissioner says.

The MHCC was established under the Mental Health Act 2014 (Vic), which aims to protect the rights and dignity of people accessing public mental health services and to place them at the centre of their treatment and care.

We work with services to build a complaints culture in which people feel supported to raise their concerns and where services provide effective responses and initiate service improvements.

This year, we made a submission to the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System, drawing directly on the lived experiences, insights and views of the people who have spoken up in the over 16,000 complaints made or reported to our office over our first five years of operation.

“This is a once in a generation opportunity to re-imagine and reform our mental health system and deliver services that are truly person-centred, rights-based and recovery-oriented. We will continue to contribute our insights to the Commission as it formulates its recommendations and to ensure that everyone’s experience matters”, says Commissioner Coulson Barr.

If you have any questions or feedback about the annual report, please contact us.