At the request of an entitled patient, any person may seek a second psychiatric opinion. Guardians, parents of entitled patients under 16 years of age, and the Secretary to the Department of Health & Human Services, if the entitled patient is the subject of a family reunification order or a care by Secretary order, may also seek a second psychiatric opinion.
An entitled patient can seek a second psychiatric opinion at any time.
An entitled patient is a person who is subject to a Temporary Treatment Order or Treatment Order, a security patient or a forensic patient.
A second psychiatric opinion under the Mental Health Act 2014 can be sought from any psychiatrist.
Where a second psychiatric opinion is requested under the Mental Health Act 2014, the authorised psychiatrist must ensure that reasonable steps are taken to assist an entitled patient to obtain a second opinion. This includes assistance to decide the most appropriate psychiatrist to provide the second psychiatric opinion. This will be decided by the patient's circumstances in each case including, the purpose for which the opinion is sought, the diagnosis, the urgency of the request and the patient's financial circumstances.
The Second Psychiatric Opinion Service is conducted by North Western Mental Health Services and Monash Health. Full information about the service is available on the website.