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Asylum Seeker and Refugee Mental Health Network

The Asylum Seeker and Refugee Mental Health Network, established by the RANZCP Board in 2019, considers the issues faced by psychiatrists and trainees working with asylum seekers and refugees, whether in restrictive forms of detention, or living in the Australian or New Zealand community.

The Network Terms of Reference [PDF; 117 KB] outline the purpose, responsibilities, membership and governance of the Network.

The responsibilities of the Network are to:

  • Provide a forum for the exchange of ideas and knowledge bi-nationally in relation to the mental health of asylum seekers and refugees.
  • Act as an expert reference group to provide feedback to the College on relevant matters.
  • Advocate for the provision of independent, high-quality, culturally sensitive mental health services for asylum seekers and refugees.
  • Contribute to the development and maintenance of resources which assist and support psychiatrists working with asylum seekers and refugees.
  • Recommend models of care that will improve the quality of mental health services delivered to asylum seekers and refugees.
  • Promote and encourage the highest clinical and ethical standards in the delivery of mental health services to asylum seekers and refugees.
  • Promote and facilitate research relevant to the mental health of asylum seekers and refugees.
  • Promote further education and training of psychiatrists and trainees in relation to asylum seekers and refugees.
  • Identify and promote the role of psychiatrists in the multidisciplinary approach to asylum seeker and refugee mental health, and participate in appropriate cross-sector initiatives.
  • Identify, report, and manage risks in accordance with College Policy.

In discharging its responsibilities, the Network should consider:

  • the role of the RANZCP in supporting members who work with asylum seekers and refugees
  • confidentiality issues and peer review group access
  • policy issues and advice
  • potential clinical and ethical compromises psychiatrists may face when working in detention
  • advocacy on standards for mental health care for asylum seekers and refugees.

Membership

Membership of the Network is open to all interested College members, and other interested professionals including representatives from professional, carer, or consumer organisations.

There are no fees to join the Network.

Join the Network via MyRANZCP [Member log in required]

Non-College members are eligible to join the Network following approval from the Board.

The Asylum Seeker and Refugee Mental Health Network Committee

The activities of the Network are led by a bi-national committee, the Asylum Seeker and Refugee Mental Health Network Committee.  The Network Committee reports to the RANZCP Board.

The current Chair of the Network Committee is Dr Kym Jenkins.

The Network Committee can be contacted via membership@ranzcp.org.