Faces of Peninsula Health – Q&A with Kate Bendall

Kate Bendall, Mental Health Consultation & Alcohol and Other Drugs Manager.

As the manager of our Mental Health Consultation service, and the Emergency Department’s Mental Health Alcohol and Other Drugs (AOD) Hub, Kate Bendall is committed to providing outstanding Mental Health and AOD services to Frankston and the Mornington Peninsula community.

Q: What do you do in your day to day role?

A: My role varies every day. My focus is always on ensuring we are able to provide the best care, and supporting staff who do an amazing job every day.   This may involve staff support, rostering, ensuring people get paid correctly, investigating incidents, updating policies and procedures, liaison with other areas of the service, meetings, brainstorming new ideas, and always striving to improve. 

Q: What is the Emergency Department (ED) Mental Health and Alcohol and Other Drugs (AOD) Hub, and what service does it provide to our community?

A: The ED Mental Health and AOD Hub was developed in 2020 to assist consumers presenting to the Emergency Department with Mental Health or AOD issues, and to assist with linking into longer term supports. It is staffed with nurses, social workers, a consultant psychiatrist, and peer support workers (who have a lived experience of substance use and/or mental health issues). The hub currently has an outreach service and will include five short stay beds as part of the Frankston Hospital redevelopment. Support is tailored to the individual and involves up to 28 days of outreach support.

Q: What do you enjoy most about working in Mental Health?

A: I am so lucky to have found a career that I have always loved and continue to love after 26 years. I love that I learn every day, that no two days are the same, and that I have the incredible privilege of being able to provide support to consumers who are struggling with their mental health and substance use, and to support the staff who support them.   

Q: What is one stand-out moment or highlight from working at Peninsula Health?

A: Probably a standout for me, was last year’s Thank You Festival. It was amazing – gifts, grazing boxes, bubble tea, ice-creams and more!  Peninsula Health were so generous, and I truly felt the gratitude of the organisation for all the hard work we had all done during COVID.    

Q: Why would you recommend Peninsula Health as a place to work?

A: Peninsula Health is a great place to work. I have felt supported, been given the opportunity to grow and learn, and I love the way that the organisation is always trying to find ways to improve and learn as well. Not only that, it is located on the Mornington Peninsula, where I have lived for 20 years, which has to be one of the most beautiful parts of the world!   

Q: What do you like to do outside of work?

A: I love being a mum and Uber driver to my very fast growing teenage children!