Big bus to beat the blues

A BIG blue bus will take beyondblue’s NewAccess support service for mild to moderate depression and anxiety, which it has run in Canberra since October, to hundreds of communities across Australia over the next 16 months.

Before it heads off around the nation, the big blue bus will be at Canberra Airport’s Brindabella Business Park tomorrow from 8am to 2.30pm, with a free barbecue from 12.30, and in Garema Place this Thursday from 8am to 2pm, with a NewAccess coach on hand to chat with visitors.

The low-intensity NewAccess service provides ‘coaches’ trained by beyondblue to help people get through tough times in their lives, by dealing with specific issues that have catalysed a mild bout of depression or anxiety, based on a succesful model pioneered in the UK.

ACT Medicare Local began delivering the first trial of NewAccess last October and aims to support over 2000 Canberrans over the next two years.

“NewAccess coaches are here to help Canberrans with mild to moderate depression or anxiety set practical goals and help you get back on track,” says ACT Medicare Local chair Dr Rashmi Sharma.

“If you can’t make it to either of the community events this week, you can call the program directly on (02 6287 8066), and arrange for support by either meeting your NewAccess Coach in person or over the phone.

“You can also be referred through traditional avenues by your GP, allied health professional, family member and community services.”

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