The Health Independence Program (HIP) at Werribee Mercy Hospital provides community-based programs designed to help you improve your health and independence.
We can help people who are
- living with a disability
- recovering from an injury or illness
- living with long-term health conditions
- living with multiple health problems
- socially isolated
- adjusting to change in their way of life
- wanting an alternative to hospital care (where safe and appropriate)
We can help you
- increase your independence
- improve your walking and level of activity
- better understand your health conditions
- make better health choices
- improve your quality of life
We will work to
- place you at the centre of your care
- work with you in partnership
- offer you the freedom of choice
Services are provided to eligible people at no cost. You may be asked to pay for any equipment or products you may need. Your therapist will discuss this with you if it is required.
Services may be provided in the centre, in your own home or in the community.
HIP is the overarching service name which includes the below services.
Our five programs complement one another to improve health and well-being.
The programs are:
- Community-based rehabilitation: We help people who have been in hospital, have a disability or long-term illness, or who are frail, to stay as independent as possible. This services includes pulmonary rehabilitation (phase 2) and vestibular rehabilitation.
- Complex care (formerly known as HARP – Hospital Admission Risk Program): We work with you to help you understand your illness, how to manage it and how to stay well. We also help by connecting you with community services and specialists who can support you long-term.
- Falls and balance clinic: We help people who have had falls or have problems with walking and balance. We work with you to improve your strength and reduce your risk of falling.
- Continence clinic: We help people who have difficulties with bladder and bowel functions. We work with you to better manage these difficulties by offering expert advice, care and support.
- Residential in-reach: We help people in residential care avoid coming into hospital unnecessarily. We do this by giving expert care to each resident and advice to staff within the residential care environment.
These services operate from the Continuing Care Centre located on the ground floor of the Catherine McAuley Centre at Werribee Mercy Hospital
Planning for your appointment
Preparation for your appointment
- see your GP if you feel worse in the days or weeks leading up to your appointment.
- Place any letters or results from your general practitioner (GP) in an envelope to bring with you.
- Please bring someone to assist you with supervising children during your appointment. If you require childcare and are unable to make arrangements, please advise staff so we can reschedule your appointment. Mercy Health staff are not permitted to supervise children during your appointment.
- If you wish to see a female doctor please read this information before your appointment.
For an appointment at Werribee Mercy Hospital:
- Please arrive 30 minutes before your appointment. This will give you enough time to find parking and get to the Continuing Care Centre. The walk can take up to five minutes, depending on where you park. The nearest car park to the Continuing Care Centre is at the front of the hospital, best accessed from Hoppers Lane.
- on arrival, please check in at reception
- register at the self-serve kiosk located to the left of the reception desk by scanning the barcode at the top of your appointment letter. If you have any difficulties with this process, the reception staff will be happy to help you.
- appointment lengths vary according to your needs
- you may be seen by several staff members
For an appointment at home:
- we will phone you to arrange an appointment date and time that suits you, and when the Health Independence Program staff member can come out to your home
- home appointments can take between one to two hours
- your appointment letter
- your Medicare card (please note there will be a $350 fee on the day if you do not have a card)
- blood test results
- x-rays or other scan results
- a list of your current medication
- your private health insurance card if applicable
- you may also like to bring a bottle of water and a book to read.
Please come to your appointment with any questions you may have about your care.
If you require a medical certificate or carer’s certificate, please ask your treating clinician during your appointment.
After your appointment
After you see the clinician you may be:
- discharged back to your GP
- given medication or sent for more tests and asked to return. We will make a return appointment for you before you go home.
- referred to a specialist
To change or cancel your appointment
If you cannot attend your appointment, please contact the Continuing Care Centre as soon as possible so that we can arrange another time.
If you no longer need to see one of the clinicians or specialist services, or you have been seen elsewhere, please advise us as soon as possible that you wish to cancel your appointment.
If you do not attend two appointments in a row, your GP will be contacted and your future appointments cancelled. You can get another referral if you would like another appointment made.
My Aged Care
- Website: www.myagedcare.gov.au
Provides up-to-date information about Australia’s care system, services and assessments.
My Aged Care is the Australian Government’s starting point on your aged care journey. Find and access the government-funded services you need.
Helps carers access practical information and advice, and connect with services in their local area.
Many people don’t see themselves as carers. They are just children, parents, partners or friends who care for someone close to them.
If you are a carer, you can get help and support from the government and other organisations.
Wyndham City Council
- Website: www.wyndham.vic.gov.au
Provides information on all council services.
- Phone numbers:
beyondblue Support Service
1300 224 636
24 hours, 7 days a week
- Website: beyondblue.org.au
Equipping everyone in Australia with the knowledge and skills to achieve their best possible mental health, whatever their age and wherever they live. We give people the confidence to support those around them, and make anxiety, depression and suicide part of everyday conversations. And as well as tackling stigma, prejudice and discrimination, we’re breaking down the barriers that prevent people from speaking up and reaching out.
Services avialable through the beyondblue website include:
- Chat online
- Online forums
If you require immediate support, please contact the beyondblue Support Service.
- Website: www.sane.org
Helping all Australians affected by mental illness to lead a better life.
Alcohol and Drug Foundation
- Website: adf.org.au/insights
Educates about the harm caused by alcohol and other drugs in Australia.
Better Health Channel
- Website: betterhealth.vic.gov.au
We provide health and medical information to improve the health and wellbeing of people and the communities they live in. This information is:
- quality-assured and reliable
- locally relevant
- easy to understand.
The information on our site aims to help people understand and manage their health and medical conditions. It does not replace care provided by medical practitioners and other qualified health professionals.
We are fully funded by the Victorian Government, with no commercial advertising or corporate sponsorship.
Continence Foundation of Australia
- Website: Continence Foundation of Australia
Continence Foundation of Australia provides information on funding, referral and products. We also offer free resources for individuals, carers and professionals to help treat bladder and bowel control problems.
- Website: www.diabetesaustralia.com.au
Provides information on diabetes for patients, families and health professionals.
Heart Foundation Australia
- Website: www.heartfoundation.org.au
Provides information on heart health for patients, families and health professionals.
- Website: strokefoundation.org.au
Education and resources about stroke.
- Website: lungfoundation.com.au
Education and resources about lung health.
Last reviewed March 9, 2020.