What is Responder Assist?

Responder Assist is the Centre of Excellence for emergency worker mental health.

Our goal is to improve emergency worker mental health in Victoria. We aim to achieve this through three broad pillars of activity:

  • An assessment and referral service to ensure emergency workers can access care that is right for them
  • Awareness, training, and clinician support to help ensure that emergency workers across Victoria are receiving the best possible mental health care
  • Research and evaluation to better understand the needs of emergency workers and to improve the quality of treatment they receive



Our clinical service is available to emergency workers in Victoria (including volunteers and those retired from service) and the practitioners that support them. It is a confidential and independent service aimed directly at supporting emergency workers who have experienced trauma.


Our specialist clinicians are specifically trained in treating emergency workers. As part of the Responder Assist program of work, they are also engaged in ongoing educational and community of practice activities to ensure they are knowledgeable in the latest treatments. Emergency workers who engage our clinical services have the best chance of recovery by receiving care based on the latest available research.


Training & Support

Responder Assist provides education and networking opportunities aimed at increasing the capacity and capability of health providers across Victoria who work with emergency workers. To facilitate this, we have developed a competency framework that outlines key skills for practitioners. This framework, together with our research on evidence-based treatments, forms the basis for our training programs.


Our programs are aimed at delivering key competencies to mental health practitioners working with emergency workers in Victoria. In addition to such training, Responder Assist also facilitates Communities of Practice and provides other networking opportunities for clinicians who support emergency workers. You can read more about our first Community of Practice session in the first edition of our newsletter.



Our research is aimed at optimising clinical services for emergency workers. As part of Phoenix Australia’s broader research efforts, Responder Assist will evaluate the effectiveness of treatments specifically provided by clinicians to emergency workers. We will also engage in clinical trials and conduct associated studies as appropriate in order to develop evidence-based treatments that are specific to emergency workers. You can read more about our trauma research on the Phoenix Australia website here.


To find out more, visit our website, and sign up for updates here. To access treatment or refer an emergency worker contact our clinical intake line during office hours on 1800 329 191.