The community visitor will work with the person receiving treatment and the services to resolve any complaints and concerns the person might have.
I have been with the CVP since early 2012 and it is a very challenging, but also very rewarding role.
The Annual Report is an opportunity to make the voices of people who are treated in these systems, heard loud and clear: with decision-makers and politicians, the public and whoever has an interest in the well being of people living with mental illness and disabilities.
This report cannot do justice to the depth and variety of experiences people have shared with us. Although it may seem to some that their pleas and concerns go unacknowledged, I would like to assure all of them, that each and every issue is noted and informs us and the services.
Without these issues raised, big and small, we would not have such a deep understanding of the need for change and improvement in certain areas, and also what is helpful and supportive.
I would like to thank all staff in the services who work with us and assist us, even though we often challenge the status quo.
Most importantly, I would like to express my deepest respect for the courage and tenacity people show in raising the issues that concern them and thank them for their trust in our work.They often deeply affect us and they always keep us inspired and dedicated to the task.
Community visitors are appointed by the Minister for Health for three year terms. They have inquiry, inspection, complaints resolution and advocacy functions.
A person who is unhappy with any aspect of their treatment and care or who requests support when receiving treatment from NT Services may contact a community visitor and request a visit. The Community Visitors respond quickly. If a person asks to see the Community Visitor, the CVP has to make contact or follow-up with the person by the end of the next working day. Often the Community Visitor responds on the same day.
The Community Visitor seeks to address the issue at the lowest possible level.
Community Visitors may help a person make a complaint using internal complaints processes, or by accessing external complaints bodies such as the Health and Community Services Complaints Commission (HCSCC). For mental health and disability functions, the Community Visitor can help the person to use the legislated review mechanisms.
Community visitors visit Mental Health & AMT approved facilities on a weekly basis and Disability services on either a monthly or quarterly basis.
Community visitors also respond to requests from people receiving treatment in the mental health area who receive services in the community (although they will arrange to meet the person at a neutral, safe place as community visitors do not visit people in their own homes).