Federal Member for Parkes, Mark Coulton has welcomed the sweeping changes planned for mental health services across Australia.
Set to directly benefit the people of Western New South Wales, the Mental Health Reform Package sets out bold reforms to be phased in over the next three years.
The key reform will see people with severe and complex mental illness benefiting from new funding approaches to co-ordinating and delivering services. This will provide choice and control for people with mental illness.
Rather than taking a one-size-fits-all approach, Mr Coulton welcomes this package as it will ensure that local individual and community needs are addressed.
“This reform is all about recognising that when it comes to mental health or with any illness for that matter, not everyone is the same and people need varying levels of care or treatment depending on how their condition is assessed,” Mr Coulton said.
At the forefront of planning and commissioning this better care will be local Primary Health Networks.
“Local Primary Health Networks will be in charge of commissioning the mental health services they consider necessary and appropriate in order to meet our specific local needs,” Mr Coulton said.
The reform blueprint includes a range of new and additional services that will be implemented over the next three years.
“Included in the reforms is a new approach to suicide prevention, a single telephone and digital gateway to find the mental health advice or service you need, when you need it, along with specific care reforms focussed on children and indigenous Australians,” Mr Coulton said.
Each year, around 4 million Australians suffer some form of mental health issue, placing it as the third most significant chronic condition in the country, after cancer and cardiovascular disease.
Full details of the Commonwealth Government’s Mental Health Reform Package is at www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/mental-review-response