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Introducing Dr Andrew Darby, Pinnacle MHN primary care psychiatrist

Andrew joined the Pinnacle MHN primary mental health and addiction team earlier this month and is available to provide telephone advice and support to Waikato GPs managing mental health conditions in general practice, and to give assistance with comprehensive patient assessments and management.

He is also establishing an education plan to support primary care teams, and develop care pathways between secondary and primary to strengthen the capability and effectiveness of all mental health services.

Andrew can visit your Waikato practice to meet and discuss cases and provide education and support around issues you encounter frequently.

Andrew's background

Andrew brings with him much experience, knowledge and connection with Waikato practices having worked in this region for many years.

"I've been in the Waikato since 1995 and have previously worked across a range of psychiatric settings including the crisis service, private practice, general adult inpatient and community settings, drug and alcohol, and in clinical leadership as the clinical director for adult mental health."

Looking forward

Andrew's passion for improving outcomes for patients attracted him to his Pinnacle role.

"There's a real need to improve psychiatric care across all sectors and break down silos of care. I'm also keen to shift the paradigm from the 'reactive ambulance at the bottom of the cliff' to proactive and preventative care, inter-sectorial engagement, and support the development of resilience and independence with in the community," he says.

Andrew will be joined in September by a psychiatrist at Hauraki PHO, Dr Lyndy Matthews, also in a 0.6 FTE role. Andrew and Lyndy will work closely together supporting all Waikato GPs during normal business hours. Once Lyndy is on board, Andrew's phone will automatically divert to her when he is unavailable.

Important points to note

  • This service is during normal business hours only. It is not an urgent or crisis service.
  • Access the service by e-referral, or phone Andrew on 027 208 6316 (this number is also found on the e-referral).
  • When using the e-referral please write 'attention psychiatrist'.
  • If you phone Andrew for advice, please also send an e-referral titled 'as per phone call attention Andrew Darby'. This will ensure we capture the patient details and Andrew can document the conversation. A copy of these notes will then go back to practice via BPAC.
  • Referrals for urgent psychiatric care should continue to go to the Crisis, Assessment and Treatment Service, 0800 50 50 50.

For more information

Andrew works 0.6FTE (Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday each week) and can be contacted on 027 208 6316 or

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