Mental health disorders rank third after heart disease and cancer as the largest causes of illness related burden in Australia.
However, they represent the largest cause of disablity, accounting for nearly 30 per cent of the burden of non-fatal disease.
Approximately 4% of people in Australia will experience psychosis (schizophrenia, bi-polar disorder, related disorders) at some stage in their lives, with schizophrenia alone being the third leading contributor to the burden of disease and injury in Australian males aged 15-24.
Psychotic disorders also drive more than 75% of public mental health services expenditure.
In a historic partnership between researchers and the consumer and carer movement in Australia, the Psychosis Australia Trust was established to build on the work of the Australian Psychosis Research Network (APRN) and the Australasian Schizophrenia Conference (ASC). The Mental Illness Fellowship of Australia (MIFA) auspices Psychosis Australia, and provides Secretariat support to the Trustees in their work.
The mission of the Psychosis Australia Trust is to support organisational, investment, and policy capacity to carry out priority-driven research into schizophrenia and bi-polar disorder – with the aim of helping all those affected by these mental illnesses to live better lives now.
Established to be an umbrella organisation and knowledge bank for research and services related to psychosis in Australia, the immediate goals of PAT are to:
- Review current research programs and activities being carried out in Australia in relation to psychotic disorders, and developing an evidence-based approach to allocating priorities for further research;
- Carry out research and research-related activities in relation to psychotic disorders;
- Link the priorities of researchers with those of Australians who have the lived experience of psychosis, through our partnership with consumer and carer organisations across Australia; and
- Promote and facilitate the translation of research into practice in relation to psychotic disorders – thereby reducing the burden of disease.