Extended Care Unit (ECU)

What we do

The Extended Care Unit is a secure inpatient unit. The unit is 20 bed facility located in the Psychiatry Precinct within the Bendigo Hospital.

The aim of ECU is to provide: ongoing medium term treatment, Provide patients with a safe environment in which to develop the skills of daily living.

The unit has embedded individual, time limited programs for patients based on their assessment needs.

ECU involves patients in the development of individual programs and relatives or carers of patients in the development of individual patient programs.

The team collaborates with assigned case managers in the development and management of individual patient programs as well as community agencies and groups regarding the appropriate use of their services for our patients.

Who we care for

The Extended Care Unit (ECU) provides medium to long term inpatient treatment and rehabilitation for patients who experience unremitting and severe symptoms of a mental illness for people aged 18-65 years.

The unit provides a more secure environment for patients with an associated and significant behavioural disturbance.

How to access this service

Admission to the Extended Care Unit may be required for patients of community team or the acute inpatient service. Referrals may also be received from other services or agencies.

Referral to the Extended Care Unit does not automatically imply admission, as other options may be more appropriate.

There is an expectation that admission to the Extended Care Unit will be time limited, with the length of admission being determined by the treatment and rehabilitation requirements of the patient.

Commonly asked questions

What should I bring to hospital?
Medicare card, Health Care Card and/or concession card (if you have one) and please bring your private health insurance card (if applicable/if you want to use it).

To assist with your treatment and care please bring any information on adverse drug alert card (if you have one), previous x-ray films, scans, ultrasounds or any other test results or reports and medicines you need to take while you are here along with a list of medicines you are currently taking (or the boxes). It is important that you include medicines you have bought without a prescription such as, herbal supplements and vitamins.

Don’t forget your glasses, hearing aid, walking frame, dressing gown and slippers, or comfortable day clothes and shoes. Bring your personal hygiene items, such as shampoo, shaving cream, shaver, toothpaste and deodorant and something to do like a book, a magazine or an iPad/tablet with headphones (remember your chargers for any electronic equipment or phone).

Can I smoke?  

Bendigo Hospital is a smoke free hospital, we will support you by providing access to a Tobacco Treatment Specialist Nurse and Nicotine Replacement Therapy.

Can I have visitors?

Yes, the Extended Care Unit  welcomes the support of family and carers and follows the Bendigo Hospital visiting hours

Psychiatric Precinct

Level 2, Bendigo Hospital

Location

100 Barnard Street
Entry via Mercy Street, Bendigo, VIC, 3550

Phone

(03) 5454 6000

How to refer your patient

Referral to the Extended Care Unit (ECU) does not automatically imply admission, as other options may be more appropriate.

There is an expectation that admission to the ECU will be time limited, with the length of admission being determined by the treatment and rehabilitation requirements of the patient.

Discharge from the ECU will be based on the patient meeting the goals that have been set including the ability to receive treatment and rehabilitation in a less restrictive environment.

The treating team will make all referrals and arrangements for any continued follow up that will be necessary prior to discharge of the patient from the ECU.

Referring persons are asked to provide the following information:

Any recent presentation/concerns and any new findings and recent medical investigations (Pathology, neurological testing/reports, Histology and Medical Imaging).

A list of current medications (if prescribed), relevant patient history, relevant family history, any other information pertinent and that may assist in decision making with patient, family/carer about their care and treatment.

Clinical service overview

The Extended Care Unit provides rehabilitation services to patients of Bendigo Mental Health Services on an inpatient basis. 

It is the preferred area for those patients with a serious mental illness, who have unremitting symptoms together with significant disturbance of behaviour which inhibits the patient's capacity to live in the community and requiring intensive rehabilitation that cannot be undertaken in a community setting.

Admission to the Extended Care Unit is contingent on the referred patient: Having a significant mental illness and an enduring psychosocial disability, having identified treatment and rehabilitation needs that cannot be met in a community setting due to behaviour disturbances - which post a significant risk to themselves or others.

Admission to Extended Care Unit may be required for patients of Enhanced Crisis Assessment, adult PARC, Bendigo Adult Community Mental Health Team or the Acute Inpatient Service. Referrals may also be received from other services or agencies.

Psychiatric Precinct

Level 2, Bendigo Hospital

Location

100 Barnard Street
Entry via Mercy Street, Bendigo, VIC, 3550

Phone

(03) 5454 6000