Residential stay programsLocations:
Our four-night residential program runs from Monday afternoon to Friday morning. In that time, a multidisciplinary team supports you to develop goals to work through issues that are worrying you and may be affecting your parenting. Discharge time is Friday 9am.
Each week, 10 families are admitted to the Mercy Health O’Connell Family Centre. The centre is a communal setting with shared bathrooms, dining and play spaces. All families are allocated two rooms: a parents’ room and child’s room.
We help you develop a care plan to work towards the changes you want to make and build your confidence as a parent. Your plan will be reviewed daily in collaboration with you. Each nurse cares for three or four families per shift.
While you are staying with us you are responsible for the care of your children.
We offer the following related services for families:
Maternal and Child Health Line
13 22 29
A 24-hour telephone service for families of children aged from birth to school age.
Australian Breastfeeding Association
1800 686 268
A 24-hour breastfeeding helpline providing mother to mother breastfeeding support.
National Perinatal Anxiety and Depression Help Line
1300 726 306
Support and information on anxiety and depression before and after the baby is born. Operating Monday to Friday 10am–5pm.
13 11 14
A 24-hour service providing crisis and suicide prevention services.
1300 726 306
A 24-hour service providing professional telephone support, online support and information for men.
1300 22 4636
A 24-hour service providing information and support to achieve best possible mental health.
1300 30 1300
Provides phone counselling, information and referral service, operating seven days a week from 8am–10 pm.
Find us at:
6 Mont Albert Road
Canterbury Victoria 3126
How can people get access?
All families require a referral by a health professional to access our services.
Reception hours are Monday to Friday, 8.30am–5pm
What to do before
Please think about any parenting challenges you have and identify some goals you would like to work towards during your stay.
What to bring
Please bring the following items:
- completed administration forms, which are emailed to you prior to admission
- Medicare card
- your family’s medications in a snap-lock bag and a letter from your GP listing any prescription medications you take
- Child Health Record book
- clothing and toiletries for all family members attending, including appropriate night wear
- disposable nappies and nappy bags
- sunscreen and hats for outdoor play
- personal items to help comfort your child, for example, a dummy or a special toy
- a play mat
- a pram or stroller.
Please bring the following items if you, or your child, use them:
- breastmilk expressing equipment
- formula and bottles if required (we provide microwave steriliser bags)
- a sipper cup
- any special food you or your family may eat.
You may also wish to bring:
- your favourite snacks
- a familiar meal for your children for the first night, to help them settle in for the week
- a notebook to record details of your stay.
What to expect on the day
Our four-night residential program runs from Monday afternoon to Friday morning
Throughout your stay with us, you will be supported by a multidisciplinary team including:
- maternal and child health nurses
- nurses and midwives
- enrolled nurses
- early childhood workers
- a men’s group facilitator.
Discharge time is Friday 9am
For health professionals
Residential Programs work with families to:
- increase parenting skills and confidence, in turn helping families raise and protect their children
- provide services that are individual and culturally sensitive in meeting family and parenting needs
- promote community and professional awareness of caring for and nurturing the needs of young children
- help families function independently within their own communities by developing connections with other services.
Dads, partners or other carers are encouraged to participate in the program.
If family members or attendees are taking prescription medications, you must provide a list of medications from your GP upon admission. Please note, we do not stock any medications on site.
How to prepare the patient
We are a public hospital. The only cost is a nappy disposal service fee. This is $30 per week for one child or $45 for two children in nappies, payable by cheque or cash. Please note we do not have credit card facilities available.
Families will be sent a list of what to bring during their stay with us.
What/when you should refer to us
You should refer families to this service if you identify issues that are impacting on their parenting capacity. These issues may include:
- difficulty adjusting to parenting and family relationships
- difficulty adjusting socially and emotionally
- feeding and nutrition challenges
- growth and development challenges
- behavioural challenges
- general parenting skills including sleep and settling challenges
- managing multiple births (for example, twins or triplets).
What/when you should not refer to us
We are not a crisis service or an inpatient mental health service. Clients referred to us may wait one-to-three months from receipt of referral until service delivery.
There is high demand for a residential stay for families who are experiencing challenges and wait times for this service can be lengthy. We ask that families who may be able to be assisted by other community services be directed to those supports first.
O’Connell Family Centre
6 Mont Albert Road
Canterbury Victoria 3126
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