The team includes ACT Ambulance Service paramedics, ACT Policing officers and mental health clinicians from Canberra Health Services. They work together to provide a more comprehensive mental health response to people experiencing mental health emergencies. Police officers are there to uphold overall safety, paramedics can assist with physical injuries and assessment and clinicians can provide a thorough mental health assessment.
Since the program’s commencement in December 2019, over 80% of people who have been assessed by PACER were suitable to be left at home with referrals to other mental health services in place. This has seen a reduction in the number of people who have needed to be transported to hospital emergency departments, due to receiving a thorough mental health and physical health assessment by the PACER team.
It was recently announced that the program will continue to operate in Canberra and has increased its service to seven days a week.