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Lived Experience Focus Group

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Royal Darwin Hospital Mental Health Unit


The NT Government is seeking people with lived experience to inform the design of new mental health facilities at Royal Darwin Hospital. 

Interested people are invited to submit an Expression of Interest to participate in the Lived Experience Focus Groups which will be scheduled during the week starting the 21st of March 2022 (further details to be provided). 

Complete the Expression of Interest Form and return to or

PDF Expression of Interest Form

Further Information:

It is proposed the facility will house two units: 

  • SARA (Stabilisation, Assessment and Referral Area) Unit – a 6 bed unit closely associated with the Emergency Department and for people presenting to the emergency department with mental health concerns, and
  • Mental Health Inpatient Unit – an 18 bed acute facility to complement the existing mental health units.

Both areas will be located within the same building over 2 levels adjacent to the existing RDH mental health facilities. The project is currently in the design phase, understanding the functional, clinical and service requirements. Construction is expected to commence in a staged approach in the second half of this year. 

Due to the nature of this type of building, the finishes need to be robust to ensure safety of consumers and staff. This can result in a hard, unwelcoming spaces which work against the therapeutic environment needed for optimal care. To balance this the Design Team want to integrate well being components into the building fabric and have included a Place Making Consultant to manage this process. The input into this process of people with lived experience of mental illness is vital.  The Design Team need help to negotiate appropriate ways to introduce art and other well being initiatives to create a culturally safe and pleasant environment to recover in. The NT Government are seeking the assistance of people with lived experience of mental illness to assist us with this challenging project.


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