Frequently Asked Questions

  • Where can I find translated mental health information?

    It is important that mental health information provided to consumers and carers in their first language has been prepared by professional translators to ensure that meaning and context are considered, and translations are accurate. Many terms, acronyms and words cannot simply be translated from English to another language, so only professionally translated materials should be used. 

    SOME USEFUL SOURCES OF TRANSLATED MENTAL HEALTH INFORMATION

    • The Health Translations Directory healthtranslations.vic.gov.au 
      An extensive range of translated health information is available on this easy-to-access directory. The Directory is funded by the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services and managed and updated by the Centre for Culture, Ethnicity and Health.
    • Embraceembracementalhealth.org.au/translated-content
      This site allows a search by language for mental health related material.
    • Beyond bluebeyondblue.org.au/who-does-it-affect/multicultural-people/translated-mental-health-resources
      beyond blue offers a range of translated materials for consumers and health professionals, including information for new parents, information on mental health conditions, and translations of the Kessler (K10) assessment form and the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS).

    To translate some of your agency’s materials, the following may assist:

    • Mental Health Community Support Services
      ONCALL provides interpreter and translation services to the community mental health sector. At the time of writing, this service has a monthly spending cap and is accessed on a ‘first come, first served basis’. Authorised agencies have a PIN which is quoted when requesting translating or interpreting services through ONCALL. Agencies can find their PIN by telephoning ONCALL on 03 9867 3788.
    • Clinical Services
      Clinical mental health services can access interpreters and translators as required through their internal mechanisms. Ask your manager about the process in your workplace.
  • What interpreter services are available?

    MENTAL HEALTH COMMUNITY SUPPORT SERVICES

    ONCALL provides interpreter and translation services to the community mental health sector. At the time of writing, this service has a monthly spending cap and is accessed on a ‘first come, first served basis’. Authorised agencies have a PIN  which is quoted when requesting translating or interpreting services through ONCALL. Agencies can find their PIN by telephoning ONCALL on 03 9867 3788.

    CLINICAL SERVICES

    Clinical mental health services can access interpreters and translators as required through their internal mechanisms. Ask your manager about the process in your workplace.

    PRACTITIONERS WORKING IN OTHER MENTAL HEALTH SUPPORT ROLES

    Practitioners in various Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) funded services can utilise the DHHS language services credit line. These include practitioners working in community health settings, Alcohol and Other Drugs services and homelessness services. The Victorian Interpreting & Translating Service (VITS) – or LanguageLoop – is the current provider of the credit line.

    ACCESSING INTERPRETERS FOR THE NDIS

    VTMH OFFERS TWO TRAINING PRODUCTS WHICH BUILD THE CAPACITY OF MENTAL HEALTH PRACTITIONERS TO WORK WITH INTERPRETERS

  • How do I find a bilingual mental health professional?

    Some consumers and carers who speak languages other than English (but not all) might prefer to be supported by a mental health professional who speaks their first language and is from their cultural background. Potential benefits of this could include the consumer/carer not requiring an interpreter and possibly feeling more comfortable communicating in their first language. Remember, however, that a practitioner speaking the same language as a client does not mean they are from a similar ethno-cultural background. Also, some consumers/carers may have concerns about confidentiality when being referred to someone from their cultural community, so it is important to assure them of confidentiality, as with any other engagement with a practitioner.

    Always ask the consumer/carer if they have a preference for referral to a bi-lingual practitioner, rather than assuming this before discussing referral options (if there is an option to refer).

    IF YOU ARE WANTING TO REFER TO A PRIVATE PRACTITIONER, YOU CAN SEARCH HERE:

    OTHER BILINGUAL PROFESSIONALS

    • Pharmacistsfindapharmacy.com.au
      (see ‘language spoken’ option).
    • Infoxchange Service Seekerserviceseeker.com.au
      A variety of health and community service practitioners and agencies can be found on Infoxchange Service Seeker (see advanced search for spoken language or other key words such as “multicultural”). You can search here for specific supports, for example, family violence, housing and so on.

    Consider if referral to a bilingual practitioner is necessary.  Are you or your agency or another specialist service able to adequately support the person working with an interpreter , or with some extra support from VTMH? We have a range of workshops and resources that can build your capacity in working with interpreters. Read more about our workshops here.

  • What mental health services are available in Victoria?

    The mental health system has many parts. For up-to-date information see this page on the Victorian Government Website.

    To find other providers of medical, psychologial and social support, search: Infoxchange or AskIzzy.

  • Which policy documents discuss mental health and cultural responsiveness?

    There is a variety of policy frameworks that speak to culturally responsive practice in mental health and across health and community services. This is not an exhaustive list and provides some key Victorian and National frameworks.

    VICTORIA

    OTHER VICTORIAN GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENTS

    OTHER VICTORIAN FRAMEWORKS

    NATIONAL