Many people have advocated for peer support programs to be a part of the mix of services provided to returned veterans experiencing Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and other forms of mental ill health. The main stumbling block in Australia to implementing such programs, which have proven their value in other countries, is resistance to peer models from people who have concerns about clinical governance and support in such projects. Mates4Mates in Hobart has the services of an army psychiatrist who has warzone experience, and firsthand knowledge of the effectiveness of these programs.
With the help of PIR Flexible Funding Mates4Mates will develop a support, supervision and clinical governance structure for veterans peer support programs which they believe will see the development of this approach across Tasmania and they hope, more broadly. Success will mean a far more flexible and cost effective service system will be available to veterans as an adjunct and compliment to more traditional veterans services.