The need for a mental health prevention and recovery service in North West Tasmania has been raised during a coronial inquest into the death of a man who took his own life.
The man Damian Summers suffered from a mental condition and spent 26 days at the Spencer Clinic in Burnie, was released to his home on King Island on a Friday, and a short time later, he died.
He was the subject of a Treatment Order at the time of his death, which meant he could be placed into a mental health facility at any time, and was required to take medication as directed.
Issues were raised in inquest about discharging patients on Fridays, when there is a lack of services available on a weekend, and the need for a "step-down" facility for people leaving in-patient care.
It was stated by witnesses that Mr Summers "could have spent three or four days building his resilience and then discharged to King Island", which may have softened the fear of return.
Witnesses also provided evidence about the need for a person's GP or treating practitioner to be informed about discharge.
One stated that if they had known of Mr Summer's discharge "then a call would have likely been made to him that day", and described it as frustrating.
Coroner Olivia McTaggart said there was no evidence to predict that Mr Summer's would take his own life.
She did however find issues with the fact that Mr Summers' treating doctors were not informed of his discharge from the in-patient facility when he returned to King Island, nor were they told he was the subject of a Treatment Order.
"It is obviously important for the general practitioner to have immediate knowledge of the existence of such an order," Coroner McTaggart wrote.
"I recommend that when a patient is discharged from an inpatient mental health facility to a rural or remote area a treating clinical or health professional from the facility provides immediate advice to the patient's general practitioners with the discharge summary."
She said that a copy of the Treatment Order should also be provided to the patient's GP, along with a copy of the discharge summary.
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