National survey to investigate complex mental health lived experience

  • The Our Turn to Speak survey. Image: SANE
    The Our Turn to Speak survey. Image: SANE
Michelle Blanchard, Deputy CEO and Director Anne Deveson Research Centre

A new national survey that seeks to understand the life experiences of people living with severe and complex mental health issues is now live and seeking participants.

Our Turn to Speak is the largest survey of its kind ever conducted in Australia. It is being led by SANE Australia’s Anne Deveson Research Centre in partnership with the Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences at the University of Melbourne, and with the support of the Paul Ramsay Foundation.

SANE are looking for people from all walks of life to participate and it’s vital the experiences of those living in rural and regional areas are captured.

Survey participants will be asked to share their experiences across a range of 14 different areas including housing, employment, education, healthcare, insurance and finance. The survey findings will help to inform SANE Australia’s advocacy priorities and contribute to policy change, as well as influencing resources and programs at a local, regional and national level.

More than 690,000 Australians live with severe and complex mental health issues.  This research will examine the individual experiences, whether positive or negative, of people living with these issues.

Data collected will be used to inform future efforts to work toward improved social outcomes and support for all Australians affected by complex mental health issues. It will also provide a unique opportunity for Australians living with severe and complex mental health issues to be heard.

The survey leaders are calling for 7000 people to take part– online, over the phone, or in-person – to gain a deep understanding of how people living with severe and complex mental health issues are treated in Australia. This is much-needed data and has the potential to improve significantly the lives of these individuals and their families.

To be eligible to take part in the survey, you must be an Australian resident, aged 18 and over, who has been living with at least one of the following severe and complex mental health issues over the last 12 months: schizophrenia spectrum disorders, bipolar and related disorders, personality disorders, obsessive-compulsive and related disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder, dissociative disorders, eating disorders, severe and ‘treatment-resistant’ depression and anxiety requiring multi-agency support. 

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