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Good Design win for Head to Health

News and announcements | 12 Sep 2023

Head to Health, the national mental health service navigation website has won a prestigious Good Design Award for Excellence in Design and Innovation at this year’s awards ceremony, with the judges recognising “Head to Health approaches an important service with respect and creativity. The personalised user experience demonstrates the comprehensive research behind the design.”

Population wide mental health is a complex and sensitive issue that needed a new approach in the wake of COVID-19. This award for the New Head to Health Connected Digital Experience recognises how the digital Head to Health team took human-centred design to the next level to meet the challenge in a timely way. By developing a diverse, systemic and collaborative research and design approach to engage people with markedly different experiences, expertise and methods, they were able to create better outcomes for Australians seeking support for their mental health and wellbeing.

The result is an integrated, personalised experience that is helping more Australians who are experiencing mental health challenges (and the people who support them) find a path forward, and access services that are right for them.

Commissioned by the Department of Health and Aged Care, Liquid and Speedwell led the design and delivery of this important national resource, working with over 350 collaborators and contributors from all walks of life and professions. This included people with lived and living experience and their families, people who’d never sought help, GPs, psychologists and other medical professionals, university, and behavioural researchers, health departments and regulators, tech innovators, service providers and service designers and more. Collaboration included working with a team from the University of Melbourne to embed their co-designed, clinically validated Link-me Decision Support Tool and model of care into a consumer facing quiz to assist help-seekers to find trusted services to meet their need.

At the Good Design Awards ceremony in Melbourne last week, members of the Liquid, University of Melbourne and Department of Health and Aged Care teams accepted the accolade.

Photo of members of the Liquid, University of Melbourne and Department of Health and Aged Care teams accepting the accolade

The COVID-19 pandemic increased pressure on Australia’s mental health system, with even more Australians seeking support for their mental health and wellbeing. Despite improving community awareness about mental health, people experiencing mental health and/or wellbeing concerns found it difficult at times to find the right help for them.

“We knew that many people across Australia were finding it hard to get the support they needed for their mental health,” explained Kristen Hodgson, Director Online Service Navigation and Referral. “Many were experiencing issues for the first time and demand sometimes meant long wait times to see a specialist. We also heard that cost and difficulty in finding trusted services were a barrier for people seeking help. In response, the new digital Head to Health experience provides immediate access to the right trusted and free mental health services for their needs and preferences.” 

The new service connects information, programs, and services from across the mental health service system to bring together tailored and relevant options for Australians and empower them, even in periods of uncertainty. By assessing an individual’s situation, it connects them with the best options for care – whether that’s face to face, via phone, or online.

On receiving the award, Liquid’s Head of Strategy Fiona Armstrong said:

“We’re honoured that Good Design Australia have recognised this project. It’s a real example of what can be achieved when you bring together different perspectives and professional disciplines to solve a really difficult problem. Thanks to the generosity of insights, ideas, and expertise from over 350 Australians, service providers, healthcare professionals including GPs, psychologists and psychiatrists, academics, technologists and more we were able to create a meaningful new approach that is already improving access to mental health services.” 

If you would like to know more about the digital Head to Health project, you can read our case study, which details our trauma-informed research approach and some of the new features. 

About Good Design Australia and the Australian Good Design Awards

Good Design Australia is an international design promotion organisation responsible for managing the annual Australian Good Design Awards and other signature design events. With a proud history that dates back to 1958, Good Design Australia remains committed to promoting the importance of design to business, industry, government and the general public and the critical role it plays in creating a better, safer and more prosperous world.

“Some of the Award-winning projects from this year’s Good Design Awards are truly ground-breaking. There are so many inspiring impact-led projects this year that have embraced the power of design as a problem-solving tool – their design stories deserve to be recognised and celebrated at the highest level. We are proud to continue the legacy of celebrating design, and designers making a positive impact on our world. The Good Design Awards showcase what true design excellence looks like, to inspire others to greatness – that’s exactly what these Awards are about.”

Projects recognised with an Australian Good Design Award demonstrate excellence in professional design and highlight the impact a design-led approach has on business success and social and environmental outcomes.

“The Good Design Awards recognise and celebrate the transformative power of design to find innovative, customer-centric solutions to local and global challenges. My sincere congratulations to all the designers, engineers, architects and innovators recognised in this year’s Awards - you deserve to be celebrated at the highest level possible,” Dr. Gien concluded.

The Department of Health and Aged Care and Liquid continue to impress the Good Design judges, previously winning Best In Class in 2019 for the earlier Head to Health gateway website and Gold in 2020 for My Aged Care.

Liquid’s work with other clients has also been recognised over the years, including MyCQU in 2022. The digital platform for students at CQUniversity was honoured with two Good Design Awards, with the jury applauding the seamless user experience. Other past wins include; workforce performance app Ripple (2018 Gold): and ESSI Money, an educational game teaching financial literacy for students (2018 Winner).