Inpatient perinatal mental health services come to Casey-Cardinia region

Much needed inpatient and outpatient perinatal mental health services are now available at St John of God Langmore Centre to support women and families in south east Melbourne.

6 Dec 2022

Expanding its mental health treatment options, St John of God Langmore Centre recently opened a dedicated perinatal unit within its 60-bed mental health facility located on Gibb Street, Berwick.
The beautifully revitalised building now includes a 12-bed unit specialising in the care and support of expectant or new parents experiencing depression, anxiety, stress, attachment difficulties, struggles with transitioning to parenthood and unresolved grief issues. 

The unit is well appointed with spacious single rooms, each with ensuite and its own adjoining video monitored nursery. 

St John of God Langmore Centre recognises that both parents or primary carers can be impacted and offers care tailored to each of them. One or both parents can be accommodated, or a support person such as grandparent. Infants up to 18 months of age (if not yet walking) can room-in too.

Parents and primary caregivers can take advantage of: 

  • shared art, music and exercise therapy areas
  • café 
  • chapel 
  • daily newspapers 
  • free parking 
  • outdoor courtyards and sensory garden
  • laundry facilities 
  • Wi-Fi 
  • pastoral care services
  • sensory room.

Nurse Unit Manager Louise Gawler says that being admitted to hospital can be a daunting experience no matter what a patient is getting treatment for, however having the opportunity for support people to accompany their partners throughout their stay in St John of God Langmore Centre’s perinatal mental health unit helps alleviate some of their initial concerns. 

“Transitioning to parenthood can be extremely challenging, the responsibility for the wellbeing of an infant is often overwhelming,” she says. 

“It takes time to get to know your baby and what they are trying to communicate. Having your partner or a support person with you provides the opportunity for you to learn about your infant together, while providing practical and emotional support to each other. 

 “For our patients in particular, it also allows them to focus more intently on their treatment, therapy and recovery, knowing their little one is close by and being cared for by their trusted partner.”
Mother playing with baby on hospital bed smiling at eachother
St John of God Langmore Centre’s highly skilled team of mental health professionals is equipped to deliver the best possible patient care. 

Patients are supported by:

  • mental health nurses
  • psychologists 
  • psychiatrists
  • physicians 
  • social workers 
  • pastoral care 
  • exercise physiologists 
  • occupational, art and music therapists 
  • lactation consultant 
  • other allied health professionals. 

St John of God Langmore Centre takes a holistic approach to patient recovery with tailored services offered to treat a patient’s entire being. This means, not only addressing a patient’s mental health condition but their physical, emotional and spiritual needs as well.

The St John of God Langmore Centre’s perinatal unit expands the scope of services provided for parents by St John of God Health Care in south east Melbourne.

This includes:

  • maternity services at St John of God Berwick Hospital, where services are in place to screen and monitor the mental health status of expectant and new parents, 
  • St John of God Raphael Services a social outreach initiative offering counselling, support and therapy for new families experiencing perinatal anxiety and depression. St John of God Raphael Services charge no out-of-pocket fees and families can access the service through a GP referral from conception up until their child’s fourth birthday.

Read more information on how to refer a patient.

You can also call St John of God Langmore Centre on 03 9773 7000 for more information on our facility, perinatal mental health unit and other mental health services.