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THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Housing and Homelessness Minister for Social Inclusion Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform

28 June 2013

FIRST EARLY PSYCHOSIS SERVICE OPENS IN MELBOURNE

The first of nine new early psychosis services has been opened in South East Melbourne today by Federal Minister for Mental Health Mark Butler.

headspace Elsternwick will provide Early Psychosis Services based on the EPPIC model of care which has been championed by the 2010 Australian of the Year, Professor Patrick McGorry.

Mr Butler said this service was the first of nine enhanced headspace sites delivering much-needed early psychosis services.

"At least one enhanced headspace site will be located in every state and territory to boost support to young people living with psychosis and their family and provide a seamless and continued pathway of care.

This world's best practice service includes: 24 hour home based care and assessment; community education and awareness programs; easy access to acute and sub-acute services; continuing care case management; mobile outreach; medical and psychological interventions; functional recovery, group, family and peer support programs; workforce development; and youth participation.

Mr Butler said the nine enhanced headspace sites would be utilised as a 'hub and spoke' model and will be a key element of headspace's growing network.

"For example, the headspace Elsternwick will be the central hub offering these enhanced supports through the cluster of existing headspace sites in south east Melbourne which includes the headspace services based in Dandenong and Frankston.

"I am very pleased headspace will be delivering these services as they have a proven track record in youth mental health, having supported almost 100,000 young Australians since inception,' Mr Butler said.

headspace CEO Chris Tanti said this service represents a world-first, once-in-a-generation change in the way young people with serious but less common mental health issues are supported in our community.

"headspace is extremely proud and excited to now be leading this effort and thrilled to open the first service here in south-east Melbourne.

"headspace has been providing mental health support in a youth friendly environment since  2006. Young people trust headspace and recognise it as an accessible and safe place to get help for their problems.

"It's about creating a coordinated and integrated safety net, no matter what the mental health problem, so that no young person falls through the gaps," Mr Tanti said. These enhanced headspace service delivers on the remaining element of the Labor Government's $2.2 billion national mental health reform plan – early psychosis youth services.

"These services will provide a single front door for young people, with an integrated service response to deliver services wrapped around people with mental illness," Mr Butler said.

"This adds to the other successful elements of the reform plan including Partners in Recovery, 90 headspace centres, free online professional counselling (MindSpot), the expansion of the Access to Allied Psychological Services program, MindMatters, KidsMatter and many other programs," Mr Butler said.

Mr Butler said state and territory governments would be important to the delivery of the Early Psychosis Services through headspace and he would continue to work with the all jurisdictions on how they can contribute.

"If state and territory governments are able to commit their own resources, this initiative can be scaled up in their jurisdictions," Mr Butler said.

Media Contacts: Karen Palmer (Butler) 0427 339 594

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Housing and Homelessness Minister for Social Inclusion Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform THE HON WARREN SNOWDON MP Minister for Veterans Affairs Minster for Defence, Science and Personnel Minister for Indigenous Health Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on the Centenary of ANZAC

JOINT MEDIA RELEASE

17 June 2013

NEW HIGH-LEVEL GROUP ADVISE ON TACKLING INDIGENOUS SUICIDE

A new expert group has been set up to advise the Federal Government on improving mental health and suicide prevention programs for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Advisory Group will be chaired by two eminent Aboriginal experts in the field, Prof Pat Dudgeon, recognised as Australia's first Indigenous psychologist, and human rights campaigner Dr Tom Calma AO, the new chancellor of the University of Canberra.

The new Group will advise on practical and strategic ways to improve Indigenous mental health and social and emotional wellbeing.

The Group met for the first time in Canberra today to discuss its priorities, including implementation of the recently released National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention Strategy.

Also on the agenda for the inaugural meeting are the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Plan and the renewed Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social and Emotional Wellbeing Framework.

Professor Dudgeon is from the Bardi people of the Kimberley and is known for her passionate work in psychology and Indigenous issues, including her leadership in higher education. Currently she is a research fellow and an associate professor at the University of Western Australia.

Dr Calma is an elder of the Kungarakan tribal group and a member of the Iwaidja tribal group in the Northern Territory. He was appointed National Coordinator of Tackling Indigenous Smoking three years ago.

Previously, he was Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner at the Australian Human Rights Commission from 2004 to 2010 and served as Race Discrimination Commissioner from 2004 until 2009.

The other members of the new Group are (alphabetically): Mr Tom Brideson, Ms Lisa Briggs, Mr Ashley Couzens, Ms Adele Cox, Ms Katherine Hams, Ms Victoria Hovane, Professor Ernest
Hunter, Mr Rod Little, Associate Professor Peter O'Mara, Mr Charles Passi, Ms Valda Shannon and Dr Marshall Watson.

The Federal Labor Government's commitment to reducing high levels of suicide within Indigenous communities was highlighted by its development and recent release of Australia's first National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention Strategy.

The Strategy is supported by $17.8 million over four years in new funding to reduce the incidence of suicidal and self-harming behaviour among Indigenous people.

This builds on the Labor Government's broad strategic investment in suicide prevention, as outlined in the Taking Action to Tackle Suicide package and the National Suicide Prevention Program which, together, include $304.2 million in vital programs and services across Australia.

Funding already allocated to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander programs under these two national suicide programs, includes:

  • $4.6 million for community-led suicide prevention initiatives.
  • $150,000 for enhanced psychological services for Indigenous communities in the Kimberley Region, through the Access to Allied Psychological Services program.
  • $6 million for targeted suicide prevention interventions.

Media contact: Tim O'Halloran (Butler) – 0409 059 617 Marcus Butler (Snowdon) – 0417 917 796

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Housing and Homelessness Minister for Social Inclusion Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform

MEDIA RELEASE

14 June 2013

HEADSPACE LEAD AGENCIES ANNOUNCED FOR 15 LOCATIONS

Fifteen new headspace youth mental health services will open across the country to support young people dealing with depression, substance abuse and other mental health issues with lead agencies announced today to deliver the youth focussed services.

Federal Minister for Mental Health, Mark Butler, said the lead agencies include some of the nation's most experienced community-based organisations with proven success in supporting young people with mental health issues.

"These service providers will deliver the right early interventions and support in partnership with headspace to give young people a better future and help them fully participate in the social and economic life of our community," Mr Butler said.

"We know that 1 in 4 young people will experience a mental health issue this year, making it the single biggest issue facing young Australians.

"However, three-quarters of these people aren't receiving the professional help they need because of a lack of access to youth-specific mental health services.

"Today's announcement means around 70 centres will be up and running, providing care and support to young Australians by the end of this year."

Mr Butler said the new centres were part of the Labor Government's record $2.2 billion National Mental Health Reform Plan, which included almost $200 million to establish 90 headspace sites across the country.

"So far, 92 per cent of young people have reported improvements in their mental health after using headspace," Mr Butler said.

"The new centre will provide information, promote early detection and offer holistic care tailored to young people in the areas of mental health, physical health, alcohol and drug use, and social and vocational support."

The lead agencies were independently selected following an open Expression of Interest process by the headspace National Youth Mental Health Foundation.

For more information about the national headspace program, see www.headspace.org.au.

Media contact: Tim O'Halloran – 0409 059 617

 

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Social Inclusion Minister  Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform

MEDIA RELEASE

12 June 2013

DRUG ACTION WEEK LAUNCHED

More than 1000 activities involving around 400,000 Australians will be the focus of this year's Drug Action Week, launched today by Minister for Mental Health Mark Butler.

Mr Butler said these activities would boost community awareness about the dangers of illicit drug
use and the help that is available.

"These activities help us drive the message home to young people and the broader community about
the dangers of illicit drug use and issues like binge drinking," Mr Butler said.

"Individuals may struggle to cope alone, but with the support of families and communities you
can end up in a better place."

Mr Butler said building a better understanding of the problem would help reduce the harms to individuals, families, communities and Australian society as a whole.

"We have definitely made strides in recent years with big investment in research, education and
making more services available to help those in need."

"We now have three national drug research centres of excellence—the National Drug and Alcohol
Research Centre, the National Drug Research Institute and the National Centre for Education and Training on Addiction."

"And services funded under the Gillard Labor Government's $2.2 billion National Mental Health Reform Plan, including headspace and the new online mental health portal have made a big difference, although clearly there is more work to be done."

Drug Action Week runs from 16 – 22 June. For more information visit www.drugactionweek.org.au/

Media contact: Karen Palmer 0427 339 594

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Housing and Homelessness Minister for Social Inclusion Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform

MEDIA RELEASE

7 June 2013

FIFTH ANNIVERSARY OF THE NATIONAL SOCIAL INCLUSION AGENDA

The Australian Social Inclusion Board returned to its origin in Broadmeadows today, to mark five years of the Labor Government's social inclusion agenda.

The Board first met in Broadmeadows in 2008 and has since played a key role in advising the Government on ways to achieve better outcomes for the most disadvantaged in our
community.

Speaking at the Board's meeting, Minister for Social Inclusion Mark Butler said Broadmeadows was an appropriate place to celebrate the anniversary, as one of the ten sites for the Government's Better Futures, Local Solutions program.

"A key part of the Gillard Labor Government's social inclusion agenda, Better Futures, Local Solutions aims to help families and individuals boost their work skills, find jobs and provide opportunities for their children," Mr Butler said.

"It is a great example of a program designed with the Board's advice that encourages local capacity building and stronger governance and community engagement."

The Board also took the opportunity to meet with staff and participants from Spectrum Migrant Resource Centre about the Future Pathways Project, along with Lentara UnitingCare and Wintringham aged care.

"The Board has been fortunate to meet with hundreds of local organisations over the last five years to ensure our advice is grounded in a good understanding of current local challenges," Lin Hatfield Dodds, Chair of the Board said.

Mr Butler also announced that the Government would continue its support of Social Inclusion Week in 2013. SIW is a national initiative, founded by Dr Jonathon Welch AM from the School of Hard Knocks Institute.

"Social Inclusion Week will involve thousands of Australians in hundreds of events celebrating our diversity and our inclusive society and the Gillard Labor Government is proud to support this year's week which will run from 23 November to 1 December," Mr Butler said.

"These events have raised awareness about social inclusion and I'm pleased we can continue our support this year."

Media Contact: Karen Palmer 0427 339 594

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Housing and Homelessness Minister for Social Inclusion Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform THE HON MELISSA PARKE MP Parliamentary Secretary for Mental Health THE HON ANTHONY BYRNE MP Federal Member for Holt LAURA SMYTH MP Federal Member for La Trobe

JOINT MEDIA RELEASE

7 June 2012

IMPROVED SAFETY TO SUICIDE PREVENTION AT HOTSPOTS

Minister for Mental Health Mark Butler today announced the Gillard Labor Government's commitment of $7.6 million in capital works to improve safety at locations known to have a high
suicide risk – called 'suicide hotspots'.

Announced today at a suicide prevention roundtable in Berwick co-hosted by Member for La Trobe Laura Smyth, Mr Butler said the funding would help reduce suicide risk in a range of sites nationally.

"We know all too well how devastating suicide is for individuals, families and communities and this funding is vital to reducing suicide and improving the safety of our community," Mr Butler said.

Parliamentary Secretary for Mental Health Melissa Parke said four projects would be funded at identified high risk locations in New South Wales, South Australia and Victoria.

"Funding will flow to New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service, Woollahra Municipal Council, the South Australian Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure and Metro
Trains Melbourne," Ms Parke said.

Federal Member for La Trobe, Laura Smyth said that while suicide is a complex issue in Australia, the additional infrastructure provided by the Government will help to increase safety at identified high-risk areas.

"Improved fencing or barriers, night lighting, signage promoting help-seeking behaviour and closed circuit television monitors are just a few ways that we can make these locations safer,
particularly in south-eastern Melbourne," Ms Smyth said.

Federal Member for Holt Anthony Byrne said he was pleased the Government had committed $3.9 million to improve safety for the Melbourne rail network.

"While suicide prevention takes many forms, ensuring high-risk locations are made safer is an important step towards preventing tragedy," Mr Byrne said.

This funding has been provided as part of the Gillard Labor Government's $304.2 million investment to help raise awareness of suicide risk and help those at risk of suicide.

Media Contact Karen  Palmer (Butler) 0427 339 594,  Ron Mizen (Parke) 0409 447 025, Steve Grimmant (Smyth) 0433 356 658, Daniel White (Byrne) 0400 945 239

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Housing and Homelessness Minister for Social Inclusion Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform

MEDIA RELEASE

5 June 2013

GET SOME MAN THERAPY

The Gillard Government and beyondblue have teamed up in an unconventional new mental health campaign called "Man Therapy" designed to battle depression and anxiety in Aussie men.

Minister for Mental Health Mark Butler launched the humorous campaign alongside beyondblue Chairman Jeff Kennett, both of whom were overshadowed by the cult figure of Dr Brian Ironwood (the fictional character appointed to head up the campaign).

He is a self-described "straight-talking, irreverent, man's man" with a PhD in everything, whose character has been created to host the Man Therapy website and urge Australian men to take charge of their mental health.

"We know humour works in advertising with men and we need to ensure the message cuts through to Aussie men about the need to take care of their mental health," Mr Butler said.

Financed by the Gillard Government and delivered by beyondblue, Mr Butler said the campaign seeks to address the high rate of depression and anxiety in Australian men by taking a humorous approach to a serious issue.

"ABS data shows that the number of men who died by suicide in 2011 is almost twice the number who died on the roads, making suicide the biggest killer of Australian males aged between 15 and 44," Mr Butler said

"Men account for more than three quarters of all deaths by suicide and the tragedy is that about 72 per cent do not seek help for their underlying mental health issue.

"We need to do something about the high rate of suicide among men and this campaign is one of a number of programs the Government has funded as part of a record $304 million investment in suicide prevention."

The Gillard Government's suicide prevention programs sit alongside Labor's five year $2.2 billion National Mental Health Reform Plan 2011-2016.

Man Therapy ads will appear on television, radio, print, social media and online starting today and will run until the end of the year.

For more information, check out mantherapy.org.au or follow Dr. Brian Ironwood on twitter @DrBrianIronwood

Media contact: Tim O'Halloran – 0409 059 617

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Housing and Homelessness Minister for Social Inclusion Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform and THE HON JILL HALL MP Member for Shortland

JOINT MEDIA RELEASE

31 May 2013

NATIONAL SURVEY TO SHED LIGHT ON YOUTH MENTAL HEALTH

The largest national survey examining the mental health and wellbeing of Australian children and adolescents has been launched, supported by $6 million from the Gillard Labor Government.

Federal Minister for Mental Health Mark Butler launched the Young Minds Matter survey at a mental health roundtable on the Central Coast, with local MP Jill Hall, saying the
survey will involve more than 6000 Australian families and will look at the emotional and behavioural development of children and young Australians.

"It will allow us to better understand how our kids are coping and what we as a nation need to do to better support them," Mr Butler said.

The survey is being conducted by the Telethon Institute for Child Health Research and the University of Western Australia, in collaboration with Roy Morgan Research.

It will build on the first similar survey conducted 15 years ago that was instrumental in shaping and developing Australia's support services and needs in the key area of  adolescent and child mental health.

"The results of the survey will be used to plan improved health services, and programs in schools to better support the development of children and adolescents in Australia," Mr Butler said.

Member for Shortland Jill Hall said she was pleased there had been a focus on the mental health needs of young people in recent years.

"The Gillard Government's $2.2 billion investment is starting to have a real impact on the ground here on the Central Coast but there is lots more still to do," Ms Hall said.

The survey begins tomorrow (1 June) and will run until December 2013, with results expected late next year. For more information go to: www.youngmindsmatter.org.au

Media contact: Karen Palmer (Butler) 0427 339 594 Eliza Atkins (Hall) 0409 979 711

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Housing and Homelessness Minister for Social Inclusion Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform

MEDIA RELEASE

30 May 2013

RETIREMENT OF ROBYN KRUK AM

Ms Robyn Kruk AM has advised the Prime Minister that she will shortly retire from the Australian Public Service and from her role as CEO of the National Mental Health Commission.

I would like to acknowledge Ms Kruk's distinguished career, in which she has dedicated some thirty years of service to the  Australian public. Ms Kruk has worked tirelessly on behalf of the people of Australia and NSW, holding a suite of senior roles in both State and Commonwealth public services.

Ms Kruk has served as Director General the NSW Department of Premier and Cabinet, NSW Health and the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service.

In 2009, Ms Kruk took up the position of Secretary of the Commonwealth Department of Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts. The Australian Government was pleased to appoint Ms Kruk as CEO and Commissioner of the new National Mental Health Commission in 2011.

In her role as CEO, Ms Kruk has brought her considerable judgement, experience and skill to the Commission during its critical establishment phase. She has helped to build the Commission into a leading voice for mental health reform and for those with lived experience of mental illness.

The Commission has quickly become a key source of independent advice to governments on the effectiveness of the mental  health system and how best to meet the needs of people with mental illness, their families and carers. Ms Kruk has led the Commission in its work with consumers, carers and families, and in its production of the inaugural Report Card on Mental Health and Suicide Prevention.

In 2005, Ms Kruk was appointed to the Order of Australia as a Member for service to public administration.

Ms Kruk will step down in mid-2013 to take up a position as Defence Abuse Response Taskforce Reparation Payments Assessor. The CEO position will be advertised shortly as part of a national merit-based selection process. The Deputy CEO of the Commission, Ms Georgie Harman, will act as CEO prior to a new appointment being made by the Government.

Media contact: Tim O'Halloran – 0409 059 617

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Housing and Homelessness Minister for Social Inclusion Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform

23 May 2013

MAJOR EXPANSION FOR HEADSPACE AS EPPIC MOVES FORWARD

The successful headspace National Youth Mental Health Foundation will deliver the last remaining element of the Federal Government's $2.2 billion national mental health reform plan – early psychosis youth services (EPPIC).

Minister for Mental Health Mark Butler said headspace had a proven track record in youth mental health, having supported almost 100,000 young Australians since inception.

"The Gillard Government is providing $247 million to allow headspace to broaden their service offering to deliver nine early  psychosis youth services across all states and territories to support young people with more complex mental illnesses," Mr Butler said.

Initially, four 'hubs' will be established, building to nine over a three year period, with at least one located in each state and  territory. The initial four sites will be located in: western Sydney; south-east Melbourne; western Adelaide; and north-east Perth, with two to be up and running by 1 July.

"These sites will act as service 'hubs' and will be a key element of headspace's growing network across Australia," Mr Butler said.

The sites will deliver the services based on the EPPIC model of care which has been championed by the 2010 Australian of the Year, Professor Patrick McGorry.

This world's best practice model includes: 24 hour home based care and assessment; community education and awareness  programs; easy access to acute and sub-acute services; continuing care case management; mobile outreach; medical and  psychological interventions; functional recovery, group, family and peer support programs; workforce development; and youth participation.

headspace CEO Chris Tanti said this announcement represents a world-first, once-in-a-generation change in the way young people with serious but less common mental health issues are supported in our community.

"headspace is extremely proud and excited to now be leading this effort," Mr Tanti said.

"headspace has been providing mental health support in a youth friendly environment since 2006. Young people trust headspace and recognise it as an accessible and safe place to get help for their problems.

"Young people and their families will now be able to walk into headspace, regardless of the mental health issues they are facing, and be confident they will get the right support at the right time."

Professor McGorry welcomed the development, saying "the decision to channel early psychosis care through the national  headspace platform is a welcome breakthrough in mental health reform. It will allow young Australians with early psychosis in every state and territory to access expert 21st century care for the first time."

"Young people and their families will now be able to access specialist care for early psychosis in optimistic stigma-free  environments and in a more holistic evidence informed and comprehensive way," Mr McGorry said.

"This strategic partnership between EPPIC and headspace represents a significant stage in building a national system of youth mental health care and realising the potential of young Australians to flourish and contribute.

"21 years after the birth of EPPIC in Victoria, it is wonderful to see the benefits beginning to flow to young Australians in many other parts of the country."

Mr Butler said the expansion of headspace's service offering provide a seamless and continued pathway of care for these young people and their families.

"It will provide a single front door for young people, with an integrated service response to deliver services wrapped around people with mental illness," Mr Butler said.

"This adds to the other successful elements of the $2.2 billion national mental health reform plan including Partners in Recovery, 90 headspace centres, free online professional counseling (MindSpot), the expansion of the Access to Allied Psychological Services program, MindMatters, KidsMatter and many other programs."

"We are moving forward with headspace to ensure delivery of the EPPIC initiative on time because we know there are thousands of young people out there in need of these supports."

Mr Butler said state and territory governments would be important to the delivery of the EPPIC initiative and he would continue to work with the all jurisdictions on how they can contribute.

"If state and territory governments are able to commit their own resources, this initiative can be scaled up in their jurisdictions," Mr Butler said.

Media Contacts: Tim O'Halloran (Butler) 0409059617

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing THE HON WARREN SNOWDON MP Minister for Indigenous Health THE HON MELISSA PARKE MP Parliamentary Secretary for Mental Health

JOINT MEDIA RELEASE

23 May 2013

NATIONAL STRATEGY TO REDUCE INDIGENOUS SUICIDE

The first national whole-of-government strategy specifically addressing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander suicide has been launched today, supported by $17.8 million in new funding over four years.

The National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Suicide Prevention Strategy will focus on early intervention and building stronger  communities with the aim of reducing the prevalence of suicide and the impact on individuals, their families and communities.

The Strategy identifies six broad action areas, which are:

  • Building strengths and capacity in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities;
  • Building strengths and resilience in individuals and families;
  • Targeted suicide prevention services;
  • Coordinating approaches to prevention;
  • Building the evidence base and disseminating information; and
  • Standards and quality in suicide prevention.

The Strategy had been developed in close consultation with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, including 14 community  meetings across Australia, a national expert workshop, and a website that received 48 contributions directly from the community.

The Australian Government would like to thank all those who have worked hard on the development of this strategy, including those  community members and organisations that participated in our extensive consultations around the country.

Funding will support the establishment of local suicide prevention networks and a centre of best practice to support and prioritise local,  community-led activities, and share knowledge in suicide prevention for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples across the nation.

These activities will be developed in consultation with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and will implement key elements of the Strategy.

The Government recognises that suicide is a complex issue that impacts on individuals, families and the communities in which they live  and this is even more so for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are experiencing suicide within their communities at approximately twice the rate of the rest of the population.

This Australia-first strategy will guide us in delivering more community-focused, holistic and integrated approaches to suicide prevention.

The Strategy also encourages the development of increased coordination between Commonwealth and state or territory governments and across departments.

The funding for initiatives under the strategy is in addition to funding allocated to Indigenous programs under the two national suicide  programs, including $4.6 million from the National Suicide Prevention Program and $6 million over the four years from the Taking Action to Tackle Suicide (TATS) package.

The development of an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander suicide prevention strategy was recommended by a Senate inquiry into suicide in Australia in 2011.

Media Contacts: Tim O'Halloran (Butler) 0409 059 617, Lidija Ivanovski (Snowdon) 0407 108 935 and Ron Mizen (Parke) 0409 447 025

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Housing and Homelessness Minister for Social Inclusion Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform

MEDIA RELEASE

14 May 2013

COMMITMENT TO MENTAL HEALTH REFORM CONTINUES

The 2013-14 Budget underlines the Gillard Government's commitment to ongoing mental health reform.

Building on the Government's five-year $2.2 billion National Mental Health Reform plan announced in the 2011-12 Budget, initiatives will  be funded to support Australians living with and recovering from mental illness, including expectant and new mothers experiencing depression.

Perinatal depression
Funding of $37.4 million over four years will improve prevention and early detection of antenatal and postnatal depression and provide better support and treatment for expectant and new mothers experiencing depression.

Building on the existing National Perinatal Depression Initiative (NPDI), the funding comprises:

· $35.4 million for a National Partnership Agreement with state and territory governments for continued screening, support services, and training for health professionals; and

· $2 million to beyondblue for continued national coordination and leadership in the implementation of the NPDI.

Minister for Mental Health and Ageing, Mark Butler, said addressing perinatal depression provides real benefits for mother, baby, family and community.

"This funding will be a big help for some of our new mums who may be finding things overwhelming and for young children who, the research tells us, can also be affected by the condition," Mr Butler said.

"Treating the condition in the perinatal period is good for mother and child and it is a cost-effective way of preventing mental illness later in life."

Research undertaken by beyondblue shows that up to one in 10 women experience depression during pregnancy and this increases to almost one in six in the months following the birth of the baby.

Continued funding will also be provided via the Access to Allied Psychological Services program for the prioritisation and treatment of women with perinatal depression, totalling $20 million over the next four years.

Mental Health Nurse Incentive Program
Around 60,000 people living with a severe and persistent mental illness will continue to get the care they need with new funding in this Budget to support the Mental Health Nurse Incentive Program.

An additional 23.8 million over 12 months will ensure that the equivalent of 375 full-time mental health nurses can continue to provide coordinated clinical care and support to some of the most vulnerable in our community.

Funding will continue to be allocated in 2013-14 under the current rules of the Mental Health Nurse Incentive Program, which provides incentive payments to GPs, psychiatrists and other eligible organisations to employ mental health nurses.

"Mental health nurses play a key role in delivering mental health care," Mr Butler said.

"They are critical to providing vulnerable patients with support during periods of significant disability – including monitoring a patient's mental state, medication management, and linking with other support services.

"This coordinated care for people with severe and persistent mental illness helps keep them well in the community and out of hospital."

A recent evaluation of the program has found that patients receiving regular care from mental health nurses benefit from greater continuity of care and more follow-up. Patients get support when they need it and are complying more with their treatment.

Mr Butler said he would work closely with stakeholders to restructure and improve the program in 2013-14.

National Mental Health Reform Plan
The new funding provided in this Budget compliment what is already a big program of reform and investment planned in 2013-14 under the Government's $2.2 billion National Mental Health Reform plan which remains fully funded for the period 2011-12 – 2015-16.

Mr Butler said key elements of the reform plan which are planned for the 2013-14 financial year will further boost services across the board.

"Our $550 million Partners in Recovery program will begin rolling out in 2013-14 providing coordinated support and flexible funding for people with severe and ongoing mental illness with complex support needs," Mr Butler said.

"Partners in Recovery is a key plank in the reform plan, designed to pull together services like income support, housing, employment, medical care and education which can often lack coordination."

"It addresses one of the major issues in our mental health service system – a lack of coordination in the care and support provided across a range of agencies."

Mr Butler said this was just one of a range of programs funded under the reform package which will expand in 2013-14, along with the rollout of new headspace centers, the MindSpot online mental health clinic, and services for young people experiencing early psychosis.

We're protecting funding for mental health services while the opposition wants to cut services like this to the bone.

This budget keeps our economy strong, makes the smart investments for our future and ensures every Australian gets a fair go.

Media contact: Tim O'Halloran – 0409 059617

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Housing and Homelessness  Minister for Social Inclusion Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform

MEDIA RELEASE

8 May 2013

NEW MENTAL HEALTH REPORT RELEASED

A new report by private health insurer Medibank has estimated the overall cost of supporting people with mental illness in Australia at $28.6 billion per year.

The Medibank/Nous Group report, launched by Minister for Mental Health Mark Butler in Melbourne today, says that while substantial funding is being directed at mental health, the system needs to be better coordinated.

Mr Butler said the report is right in identifying the need to make our service system more 'joined up' and simple to navigate for people with mental illness.

"People with mental illness and their families have enough on their hands without having to fight for decent services," Mr Butler said.

"In 2010-11 we heard from people across Australia who were crying out for a national approach to mental health in Australia and we responded with a $2.2 billion National Mental Health Reform package to address these issues," Mr Butler said.

"These reforms are beginning to have an impact on the ground with major aspects of the reforms rolling out this year."

Mr Butler said one of the centrepieces of the reform package was the $550 million Partners in Recovery program which aims to pull together services like income support, housing, employment and medical care, which can often lack coordination, for 24,000 Australians with the severe and chronic mental illness.

"Partners in Recovery responds to precisely the issues being raised in this report and the rubber is about to hit the road on this important new service with preferred tenderers having been selected last month and services being rolled out this year."

"We have also just launched Australia's first ever online virtual mental health clinic – MindSpot – which is now providing free online therapy with trained health professionals right around the country."

"These new reforms add to programs already established like headspace youth mental health services increased service provision under the Access to Allied Psychological Services Program (ATAPS), MindMatters, Kids Matter and many others."

Mr Butler said state and territory governments remain principally responsible for mental health services in Australia and it was important to engage the states on these issues.

"We need to continue to demand better support for people with mental illness through the state-based service system," Mr Butler said.

Media contact: Tim O'Halloran – 0409 059 617

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Housing and Homelessness Minister for Social Inclusion Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform

MEDIA RELEASE

23 April 2013

MENTAL HEALTH SUPPORT IN DARWIN

Federal Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Mark Butler today opened the Mental Illness Fellowship of Australia's new drop-in centre in Coconut Grove.

Mr Butler said the centre will provide much needed respite services for carers and people with mental illness in the Northern Territory.

"The Mental Illness Fellowship of Australia is a bedrock of the community and it's fitting that they have a modern, comfortable facility like this to provide respite services for people with mental illness and their families in Darwin," Mr Butler said.

"The new facility will provide a much more comfortable setting for these services to be delivered, with air-conditioning and better surroundings."

Mr Butler said around one in five Australians will experience a mental health problem in any given year and carers of people with mental illness have specific support needs.

"Due to the unpredictability and episodic nature of mental illness, carers have specific support needs themselves."

"The Federal Labor Government is proud to support the Mental Illness Fellowship in the Northern Territory with more than $438,000 funding over three years for their respite program, providing a break for carers when they need it."

"This allows the Mental Illness Fellowship to provide important respite services which give carers a break from their caring role to participate in social activities or receive counselling and advice for themselves."

"It also gives them more options to balance their caring role with participation in paid work, education and training."

Mr Butler said the Federal Government was committed to delivering its $2.2 billion mental health reform package which includes significant increased funding to the Territory.

Media contacts – Tim O'Halloran 0409 059 617

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Housing and Homelessness Minister for Social Inclusion Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform

MEDIA RELEASE

11 April 2013

KNOX headspace TO HELP YOUNG PEOPLE IN OUTER-EAST MELBOURNE THROUGH HARD TIMES

Young people in outer-east Melbourne with mental health issues will get better support with the launch of a new Knox headspace service today.

Minister for Mental Health Mark Butler opened the service saying it would provide valuable support in areas including mental health, drug and alcohol treatment, physical health and social and vocational support.

Mr Butler said the headspace centre would be well positioned to support the growing youth population in the area, focussed on people aged 12 to 25.

"An astonishing 92 per cent of young people have reported improvements in their mental health after using the headspace service, and we expect to see similar results here in Knox," Mr Butler said.

"The new headspace service will give young people in Melbourne's outer-east the help they need to get through tough times, get back on their feet and fulfill their potential."

Minister for Mental Health and Ageing, Mark Butler, said that with the right care and coordinated support young people can get back on track and have a better future.

"We know that 1 in 4 young people will experience a mental health issue this year, making it the single biggest issue facing young Australians," Mr Butler said.

"However, three-quarters of these people aren't receiving the professional help they need because of a lack of access to youth-specific mental health services or because they don't know who to turn to."

Mr Butler said the new service was part of Labor's record $2.2 billion mental health package, additional funding of almost $200 million is being invested to establish 90 headspace sites across the country.

"The ongoing rollout of headspace across Australia shows that the Gillard Labor Government is continuing to deliver on its promise to make mental health a national reform priority."

The service is open Monday to Friday 9 am to 5 pm and located at 2 Capital City Boulevard, Knox City Shopping Centre, Wantirna.. For more information, see www.headspace.org.au

MEDIA CONTACTS: Karen Palmer 0427 339 594

 

 

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Housing and Homelessness Minister for Social Inclusion Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform

MEDIA RELEASE

9 April 2013

MIDLAND HEADSPACE TO HELP YOUNG PEOPLE THROUGH TOUGH TIMES

Young people with mental health issues in Midland (WA) and surrounding areas will get better support with the launch of a new headspace service today.

Minister for Mental Health Mark Butler opened the service saying it would provide valuable support in areas such as mental health, drug and alcohol  treatment, physical health and social and vocational support.

"Midland has a big youth population and the headspace centre will be well positioned to support the growing population in the area, focussed on people aged 12 to 25," Mr Butler said.

"We know that 1 in 4 young people will experience a mental health issue this year, making it the single biggest issue facing young Australians."

"An astonishing 92 per cent of young people have reported improvements in their mental health after using the headspace service, and we expect to see similar results here in Midland."

Mr Butler said the new headspace service will give young people in this area the help they need to get through tough times, get back on their feet and fulfill their potential.

"Three-quarters of young people with mental health issues aren't receiving the professional help they need because of a lack of access to youth-specific mental health services or because they don't know who to turn to – headspace helps to turn that around."

"With the right care and coordinated support, young people can get back on track and have a better future."

Mr Butler said the launch demonstrates that the Federal Labor Government is continuing to deliver on its promise to make mental health reform a priority.

"This is part of Labor's record $2.2 billion mental health package, with additional funding of almost $200 million is being invested to establish 90 headspace sites across the country."

The Midland headspace will be open Monday to Friday 9am-5pm and appointments can be made direct with headspace, without a doctor's referral. It is located at 14 Sayer Street, Midland. For more information check out www.headspace.org.au.

MEDIA CONTACT: Karen Palmer 0427 339 594

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Housing and Homelessness Minister for Social Inclusion

MEDIA RELEASE

4 April 2013

NATIONAL SUMMIT CALLED TO ADDRESS LOWER LIFE EXPECTANCY OF PEOPLE WITH A MENTAL ILLNESS

A National Summit of Mental Health Ministers has been called to address the high rates of premature death and adverse health outcomes amongst people with mental illness.

Federal Minister for Mental Health, Mark Butler, and NSW Minister for Mental Health, Kevin Humphries, announced the Summit to be co-hosted in Sydney in May.

Mr Butler said it was important that states, territories and the Commonwealth work together to address the hidden toll of preventable premature death among people living with a mental illness.

"In our efforts to focus on rehabilitation and recovery from mental illness we have tended to concentrate on the mental health needs of people, but physical health is just as important and we need to make sure those issues aren't ignored," Mr Butler said.

"The Summit will discuss strategies to reduce the rate of avoidable death from issues like cardiovascular, respiratory and infectious diseases."

NSW Minister for Mental Health, Kevin Humphries said it was vital the State and Federal governments work together to reverse the poor health outcomes experienced by people with a mental illness.

"Knowing that people with a serious mental illness die on average 25 years earlier that the general population and that 70 per cent of people with a serious mental illness die from cardiovascular disease compared to 18 per cent of the general population, I felt compelled to bring together my colleagues across Australia to start turning this around," Mr Humphries said.

"These are statistics which should concern us all. For most, early death is not caused by their mental illness but is the result of physical health problems such as poor diet, reduced physical exercise and increased likelihood of smoking.

"It is my hope that through this summit we can work together to deliver real improvements in the life expectancy and the quality of life of people with a mental illness."

Media contact: Tim O'Halloran (Minister Butler), 0409 059 617

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Housing and Homelessness Minister for Social Inclusion Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform THE HON SHAYNE NEUMANN MP Parliamentary Secretary for Health and Ageing Member for Blair

JOINT MEDIA RELEASE

4 April 2013

IPSWICH HEADSPACE TO HELP YOUNG PEOPLE THROUGH TOUGH TIMES

Young Ipswich and Somerset Region residents with mental health issues will get better support with the launch of a new headspace service today.

Minister for Mental Health Mark Butler and local MP and Parliamentary Secretary for Health and Ageing Shayne Neumann opened the service saying it would provide valuable support in areas such as mental health, drug and alcohol treatment, physical health and social and vocational support.

Mr Neumann said Ipswich has a significant youth population and the headspace centre would be well positioned to support the growing population in the area, focussed on people aged 12 to 25.

"An astonishing 92 per cent of young people have reported improvements in their mental health after using the headspace service, and we expect to see similar results here in Ipswich," Mr Neumann said.

"The new headspace service will give young people in this region the help they need to get through tough times, get back on their feet and fulfill their potential."

"Today's launch demonstrates that the Federal Labor Government is continuing to deliver on its promise to make mental health reform a priority."

Minister for Mental Health and Ageing, Mark Butler, said that with the right care and coordinated support young people can get back on track and have a better future.

"We know that 1 in 4 young people will experience a mental health issue this year, making it the single biggest issue facing young Australians," Mr Butler said.

"However, three-quarters of these people aren't receiving the professional help they need because of a lack of access to youth-specific mental health services or because they don't know who to turn to."

As part of Labor's record $2.2 billion mental health package, additional funding of almost $200 million is being invested to establish 90 headspace sites across the country.

For more information about the national headspace program, see www.headspace.org.au.

MEDIA CONTACTS: (Butler) Karen Palmer 0427 339 594 / (Neumann) Madonna Oliver 0477 757 791

 

 

THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Housing and Homelessness Minister for Social Inclusion Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform

MEDIA RELEASE

2 April 2013

$37 million boost to help Victorians with mental illness

Victorians with a serious mental illness will benefit from $37 million in funding over four years to deliver new initiatives under the Commonwealth-State National Partnership Agreement Supporting Mental Health Reform.

Announced today by Federal Minister for Mental Health Mark Butler and Victorian Minister for Mental Health Mary Wooldridge, the initiatives address three key areas, including reducing hospital emergency admissions; reducing homelessness; and helping people with mental illness into stable housing.

Mr Butler said that the Victorian initiatives were part of a COAG commitment to improve responses from the health and housing service systems to the needs of people with mental health issues.

"The Federal Labor Government is providing $37 million to address service gaps and prevent repeated presentations to acute mental health services," Mr Butler said.

"For example, many people with mental illness find themselves in hospitals where a community based service would have been more appropriate to their needs."

"We also know people with mental illness have a significantly higher rate of homelessness and that is a problem nation-wide which we're addressing here in Victoria and across the country."

Ms Woolridge said the funding would form an important part of the mainstream service system's response to people with mental illness.

"The Victorian Coalition Government proposed innovative approaches to tackle some of the most challenging issues for people with a mental illness and were successful in securing this Commonwealth funding," Ms Wooldridge said.

"Twelve Victorian projects delivered by health services and community-based service providers were then selected to provide more than 1,400 Victorians with severe and enduring mental illness with better care, more treatment and greater stability in their lives."

The initiatives funded through the National Partnership Agreement Supporting Mental Health Reform are:

· The Mental Health Hospital Admission Risk Program (MH-HARP) – a $7.8 million trial of a new model in three metropolitan sites that will target people with a mental health condition who frequently present to emergency departments. It will facilitate access to community support and provide better management of patient mental and physical health, which will reduce emergency department presentations. Approximately 700 people will be assisted across the three metropolitan sites.

· Breaking the cycle: reducing homelessness – a $12.1 million program that will provide mental health outreach support and care co-ordination for people experiencing entrenched homelessness as a result of their mental illness and other conditions. The program, which complements the Victorian Government's $76.7 million Victorian Homelessness Action Plan, will assist around 260 people over the life of the project.

· Mental Health support for secure tenancies – a $10.1 million outreach support program targeted to people with severe mental illness who are, or are at risk of being, homeless and who need active support to access and maintain stable housing. Approximately 500 people aged from 16 to 64 will be assisted through this program across five sites in metropolitan Melbourne and large regional centres.

· Capital for Psychiatric Assessment and Planning Units - $6 million in capital funding to Victoria to build three, four-bed Psychiatric Assessment and Planning Units that will provide up to 72 hours of specialist assessment, monitoring and treatment for acute episodes of mental illness.

Media contacts: Tim O'Halloran (Mr Butler's office) 0409 059 617 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Michael Moore (Ms Woolridge's office) 0400 719 355 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

 

THE HON TANYA PLIBERSEK MP Minister for Health THE HON MARK BUTLER MP Minister for Mental Health and Ageing Minister for Social Inclusion Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on Mental Health Reform

JOINT MEDIA RELEASE

31 January 2013

$5 MILLION FOR MENTAL HEALTH RESEARCH

Suicide prevention, substance abuse and better mental health planning will be the focus of research efforts at two new Centres of Research Excellence based at the University of NSW.

Minister for Health Tanya Plibersek and Minister for Mental Health Mark Butler today opened the two new Centres of Research Excellence in Sydney which will focus their work on mental health.

Ms Plibersek said the centres formed part of the government's 2011 Budget commitment of $26.2 million over five years to strategic investment in mental health research.

"Minister Butler and I are delighted to open these Centres as part of the Government's strategic investment in mental health research priorities through the National Health and Medical Research Council," Ms Plibersek said.

"Centres of Research Excellence work to achieve real health gains for Australians. They support the transfer of
research outcomes into improved knowledge, better health systems and improved treatment for individuals and their families."

Mr Butler said the two centres would play an important role in advancing our understanding of correlations between substance use and mental health, as well as improve suicide prevention efforts.

"Mental health and substance use disorders account for more years of life lost due to disability than any other disorders, and often occur together, affecting more than 300,000 Australians every year."

"These two research centres will identify strategies which encourage people to seek help, and give us better
evidence about the appropriate mix of services and support, and help us better understand the impact of substance use on mental health."

"I look forward to the seeing the outcomes produced by both the Centre for Research Excellence in Suicide Prevention and  Centre for Research Excellence in Mental Health and Substance Use Translating Innovative Prevention and Treatment," Mr Butler said.

Details of the Centres:

·        Professor Helen Christensen, UNSW Black Dog Institute, received $2.5 million to improve suicide prevention in
Australia through better implementation of effective interventions, improved risk identification and evidence informed policy.

·        Professor Maree Teesson, UNSW National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre received $2.5 million to address mental health and substance use and to examine innovative prevention and treatment.

MEDIA CONTACT:

Minister Butler: Brooke Wylie 0408 833 967

Minister Plibersek: Paul Perry 02 6277 7220

 

 


 

2012 Ministerial Releases, updates and information

2011 Ministerial Releases, updates and information

Minister Butler's address to the National Press Club