Series VPRS 8788
Register of General Correspondence Files (Mental Health)
About this Series Related Series Accessing the records in this Series
Date Range: Series ? 1970 - 1983
  Series in Custody 1970 - 1983
  Contents 1952 - 1983
Public Access: Open
Location: North Melbourne
Format of Records: Physical
 
Agency which created this SeriesAgency which created this Series
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Date Range Agency Title Agency Number
1970 - 1978 Mental Health Authority VA 692
1978 - 1983 Health Commission of Victoria VA 652
Agency currently responsible for this SeriesAgency currently responsible for this Series
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Date Range Agency Title Agency Number
1992 - 1996 Department of Health and Community Services VA 3092
1996 - cont Department of Human Services VA 3970
Description of this SeriesDescription of this Series
  • How to use the Records
    NOTE: Researchers should note that the correspondence files registered by this series are CLOSED to public access under section 9 of the Public Records Act.

    How to use this series

    1. VPRS 8787 Alphabetical Index to General Correspondence Files (Mental Health) should be consulted first. It can be used to browse through the subjects covered by the General Correspondence Files which it indexes. The steps to finding entries in the index are as follows:

    Locate the card(s) for the subjects desired (eg. machinery) in VPRS 8787

    Select the desired file (eg. "ECT and EEG Machines and Operators")

    Note the number of the desired file (eg. 54/5)

    Check the consignment lists for the number of the box in which the file is stored.

    2. If the desired file does not appear on the consignment list, locate the appropriate register card using the file number (eg file no 54/5 is the fifth file created in 1954).

    Cards are located in sequences according to year (eg. 54/1, 54/2, 54/3....83/1, 83/2,.....83/95 etc.)

    If the register card entry for that file has been annotated with a two part number (usually in red ink), such as 9/257, then that file has been incorporated into a subsequent record keeping system, and is not in archival custody (as at January 1994).

    In 1981 the Health Commission of Victoria was restructured, and the former Mental Retardation Services Branch of the Mental Health Division separated to become the Mental Retardation Division (VA 2577). At this time some of the files were removed from the Mental Health Division's filing system and incorporated into the filing system of the Mental Retardation Division (VPRS 6352). This procedure is known as file conversion, and the files are "top-numbered" with new numbers. Similarly, this record keeping system ceased to exist in 1983, and some files were incorporated into the new filing system of the psychiatric services section of the Mental Health Division.

    Function

    This series was used to register (allocate numbers) to the General Correspondence Files (VPRS 6344) created by a succession of agencies responsible for the administration of legislation relating to mental health between 1952 and 1983.

    The General Correspondence Files to which this series forms a register relate to the administration, policy, staffing, and development of psychiatric services within Victoria. Subjects covered by these correspondence files include details of psychiatric and mental hospitals, clinics, child and adolescent centres, community mental health centres, domiciliary services, day hospitals and outpatient services, among others.

    System of Arrangement and Control

    This register is arranged by file number in annual/single number order ie. numbers were allocated sequentially each year, with the numbers reverting to 1 at the start of each new year.

    Each card lists 6 file numbers/titles, the number of parts for each file, and the location of the file. Locations were amended as the files moved, and in this way the register was used as a file tracking system.

    Where files have been top-numbered into other series this information appears written next to the entry, (usually in red ink).

    It is not entirely clear when this series was created, but it appears to have started around 1970, when a significant number of files seem to have been culled from the record keeping system. This register may have been needed at that time to control the newly numbered files. The General Correspondence Files registered by this series however, date back to 1952. The first card in this series is therefore, 52/1.

    The date written on the cards is believed to be the date on which the file was registered (not always in order), although this has not been proven.

    Files sent to the Public Record Office in earlier consignments are noted on the cards with the letters PRO and the date eg: -->PRO 26/3.

    The last card for each year often contains registration details of the first few files for the following year. Therefore in order to locate the first file for 1982 it may be necessary to look at the last card for 1981 and so forth.

  • Function / Content


  • Recordkeeping System


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Indexes and RegistersIndexes and Registers
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Date Range Series Title Series Number
Controlled SeriesControlled Series
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Date Range Series Title Series Number
1952 - 1983 General Correspondence Files (Mental Health) VPRS 6344
Previous SeriesPrevious Series
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Subsequent SeriesSubsequent Series
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List/s of records in this seriesList/s of records in this series
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Consignment Number Contents Date Range Public Access No. of Units
P0001 By 1952 - 1983 Open 1
Indexes and RegistersIndexes and Registers
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