The Hon. Greg Hunt MP
Minister for Health and Aged Care
The Hon. David Coleman MP
Assistant Minister to the Prime Minister for
Mental Health and Suicide Prevention
The Hon. Andrew Gee MP
Member for Calare
Minister for Veterans’ Affairs and Defence Personnel
JOINT MEDIA RELEASE
7 May 2022
Boost to mental health services in Calare
Residents across Calare will have easier access to mental health services with the Australian Government today announcing a new Head to Health adult mental health satellite for the region.
The Orange Head to Health satellite service will be commissioned by Western NSW PHN, which will receive a total of $3.4 million over four years to establish and operate the satellite, which is fully funded through the Morrison Government’s historic National Mental Health and Suicide Plan announced in the 2021-22 Budget.
Member for Calare Andrew Gee welcomed the announcement of additional mental health services in the region, which will be a major boost to community-based mental health services.
“This Government continues to make the mental health and wellbeing of all Australians a national priority,” Minister Gee said.
“Head to Health satellite services, like the one being established here in Calare are designed to provide a welcoming, low stigma, ‘no wrong door’, entry point for adults to access mental health information, services and supports.
“You don’t have to go it alone and anyone who is worried about their own or a loved one’s mental health should make use of the centre when it is up and running.
“The services will be free, and referrals will be able to be made for more intensive mental health care or social supports if needed.”
The Orange Head to Health satellite service is part of a network of community-based mental health services being established around Australia as part of the Government’s $3 billion National Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Plan to lead landmark reform of the mental health system.
Minister for Health and Aged Care, Greg Hunt, said this was one of many Head to Health satellite services being established across the country, which will provide mental health support to Australians, when they need it.
“We know that the pandemic and the measures taken to contain it have been incredibly difficult and stressful for many Australians, and particularly younger Australians,” Minister Hunt said.
“That is why we are prioritising mental health support, ensuring that young people have access to care that can help them recover and reach their full potential as we reopen the country.”
Assistant Minister to the Prime Minister for Mental Health and Suicide Prevention, David Coleman, said mental health and suicide prevention remained one of the Government’s highest priorities.
“We are committed to further expanding mental health services to ensure Australians can get support, counselling, or treatment, when and where they need it,” Assistant Minister Coleman said.
“These services will provide that much needed support, as well as creating a safe space for Australians experiencing high levels of distress or who are at heightened risk of suicide.”
The satellite will be integrated within the primary care setting to offer support to adults with moderate to severe levels of mental illness over the short to medium term. The PHN will consult with the community to determine the exact locations and ensure that the services provide support in a way that meets the needs of the local community.
The Coalition Government continues to make mental health a national priority, investing a record $3 billion in the 2021-22 and 2022-23 Budgets for the National Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Plan to lead landmark reform of the mental health system.
This brings the Health portfolio expenditure in mental health and suicide prevention services and supports in 2022–23 to a record high of $6.8 billion.
Unlike the Labor Party, which has not given Australians any detail on their plans for mental health, the Morrison Government will continue to ensure that all Australians can access information, advice, counselling, or treatment, when and where they need it.
Anyone experiencing distress can seek immediate advice and support through Lifeline (13 11 14), Beyond Blue (1300 22 4636), Kids Helpline (1800 55 1800), or the Government’s digital mental health gateway, Head to Health (www.headtohealth.gov.au).