Secure extended care units (SECUs) provide medium to long-term inpatient treatment and rehabilitation for people who have unremitting and severe symptoms of mental illness or disorder. These units are located in hospital settings.
Residents of SECUs tend to:
- have difficulty living in the community or a less restrictive environment due to behavioral disturbances
- lack the capacity to live independently
- be at high risk of harm to themselves or others
- have comorbidities, including drug and alcohol problems, acquired brain injury or intellectual disability.
Admission to secure extended care units
Admission criteria to SECUs should ensure that:
- priority is given to people with the greatest need for SECU care and supervision
- the preferences of the person and their carer are considered in the admission process
- the presence of a comorbid condition or other disability is identified and addressed in care planning
- the SECU has the capacity to engage, contain and support compulsory patients.
Discharge from a secure extended care unit
Discharge planning from SECUs should ensure that a person is discharged to appropriate accommodation and access to ongoing mental health treatment and support.
Where necessary, discharge planning may include a trial discharge or a transitional discharge, to a less restrictive environment such as a community care unit.