Funding secured to expand Choices service

WA Primary Health Alliance (WAPHA) has been successful in securing approximately $7 million in funding from the Australian Government’s Community Health and Hospitals Program to expand the Choices service.   

The Government’s Community Health and Hospitals Program (CHHP) aims to better equip the health and hospital system to meet on-the-ground needs and close identified gaps in service delivery through targeted funding.

Launched in 2017, the current Choices service connects people at risk of poor health outcomes with social and mental health support as they are discharged from emergency departments and justice services. The service utilises a peer support model, whereby peer workers draw on their lived experience in similar situations to offer supportive intervention. The pilot, run by Ruah Community Services, included delivery of the service at Royal Perth Hospital, Rockingham Hospital, Perth Watch House and the Perth Magistrates Court.

Expansion includes establishment of the Choices service at four new hospitals, including Armadale Hospital, Peel Health Campus, Joondalup Health Campus and St John of God Midland Public Hospital.

An independent evaluation of the pilot program conducted by the University of Western Australia will inform the development of the expanded service. The evaluation report is expected to be released next month.

WAPHA General Manager, Mark Cockayne, said securing funding to expand the Choices service was a great result.

“Choices provides compassionate, integrated support to vulnerable and disadvantaged people and connects them to a general practitioner as well as relevant services and programs in the community.” Mr Cockayne said.

“This is a great opportunity to expand an innovative service that is making a real difference to people in crisis, helping them address their underlying mental health and social issues.”

“We will be working with stakeholders to commission this service over the coming six to twelve months and expect the tender process to begin early in the next financial year.”

Service providers are encouraged to register their interest in upcoming tenders to receive notification of opportunities that are made available to open market.

For more information, contact WAPHA Project Officer Rosie Logie on 6272 4927 or