Our Catchment Area
The St Vincent's Mental Health Service catchment area which forms a ‘u' shape around the Sydney CBD has a population of (approx) 125,000 people, of whom around 14,000 are aged 65 and over. An estimated 6% of the older population will suffer from an anxiety disorder, a mood disorder or a substance use disorder in any one year. A further 6% of the older population will suffer from dementia at any point in time, and of those around 30% will suffer psychiatric complications. And a further 2-3% of the older population will have a personality disorder and/or a substance use disorder.
An estimated 75% of the St Vincent's population of older people will have a diagnosed medical condition. The unique characteristics of the population of older people in the St Vincent's area are that some are homeless, some live in government housing, some are living in hostel and nursing home accommodation, some are of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander origin, some are from non-English-speaking backgrounds, some have HIV/AIDS and some have survived the holocaust. All of these groups of older people are at some increased risk of psychogeriatric disorder.
Additionally, a number of non-resident older people enter our catchment area every day from other parts of the city, state, country and from overseas to work or recreate or reside temporarily, which frequently places a significant ‘extra' demand on our service.