A nurse checks on a patient in the cancer ward

Departments

Veterans' Psychiatry Unit

About Us

The Veterans Psychiatry Unit (VPU) provides mental health treatment services to veterans, their widows and eligible family members, as well as past and current-serving members of the Australian Defence Force.

Located on the grounds of the Heidelberg Repatriation Hospital since its inception during WWII, the VPU has a long and proud history in providing support and assistance to individuals experiencing mental health conditions that have arisen as a result of exposure to traumatic events.

Over more than sixty years, the VPU has developed a breadth of experience in providing effective treatment to veterans and their families from WWII, the Korean and Vietnam wars, as well as operations in peacekeeping and peacemaking missions around the world. More recently, the VPU has assisted individuals from the Gulf War, Iraq, and Afghanistan conflicts.

The VPU's philosophy is to provide comprehensive, clinically targeted, and evidence-based treatment by:

  • Providing detailed assessment, diagnosis, and specialist advice regarding post-traumatic conditions, including Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD);
  • Ensuring that treatment interventions are relevant and beneficial for each individual;
  • Delivering treatment that is responsive to the needs and preferences of the individual and their family members;
  • Providing effective treatment of chronic traumatisation and the array of difficulties that consequently arise for individuals and their families;
  • Addressing social and environmental factors in conjunction with biological or physical factors; and,
  • Supporting the management of anxiety-related issues, substance misuse, and associated mood disorders.

The VPU has become the major provider of specialist assessment and management of trauma-related mental health conditions, and takes a leadership role in the development and provision of community-based mental health treatment services for veterans and their families.

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