​​​​ On this page

Key plans

The Mental Health Branch is the lead agency responsible for coordinating whole-of-government policy development and implementation in the area of mental health.

The work of Mental Health is driven by the key strategic directions for NSW Health. These include:

  • making prevention everybody's business
  • creating better experiences for people using health services
  • strengthening primary health and continuing care in the community
  • building regional and other partnerships for health
  • making smart choices about the costs and benefits of health services
  • building a sustainable health workforce
  • being ready for new risks and opportunities.

The NSW State Health Plan reflects the health priorities in the NSW Government's State Plan with strategies based on evidence of what works and challenging targets set for the future. The State Health Plan identifies mental health as a priority area.

The Fifth National Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Plan and the supporting Implementation Plan was endorsed in 2017 by the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) Health Council members. The plan builds on the foundation established by previous national mental health plans and reform efforts. It describes a cross-jurisdictional framework for implementing national action over the next five years with targeted action across eight priority areas.

NSW Strategic Framework and Workforce Plan for Mental Health 2018-2022

The NSW Strategic Framework and Workforce Plan for Mental Health 2018-2022: A Framework and Workforce Plan for NSW Health Services provides overarching guidance for NSW Health strategic action over the next five years. Strategic actions aim to improve the mental health and wellbeing of people with lived experience of mental illness, the experience of care for their families, carers and supporters and staff experiences.

Implementation Plan - NSW Strategic Framework and Workforce Plan for Mental Health 2018- 2022

The Implementation Plan for the NSW Strategic Framework and Workforce Plan for Mental Health 2018-2022 guides the Mental Health Branch and partner organisations on key elements of implementation required to achieve the goals over the next five years. An accompanying Excel Implementation Plan has been developed. The Excel document provides more details information on all actions for implementation and related performance measures.

NSW Strategic Framework and Workforce Plan for Mental Health 2018-2022: Progress Report for 2019

The NSW Strategic Framework and Workforce Plan (The Plan) comprises actions arising from the NSW Mental Health Reform in response to recommendations in Living Well: A Strategic Plan for Mental Health in NSW 2014-2024.

It provides the overarching framework for NSW Health action in mental health from 2018- 2022 and responds to recommendations in recent reviews including:

This document is the first progress report of the Plan and provides an overview of state-wide and local achievements, including by NSW Health local health districts (LHDs), speciality health networks (SHNs), Ministry of Health branches, pillars and other NSW Health organisations.

It is intended to be considered and shared for the purpose of continuous quality improvement. The 2019 progress report will support NSW Health and partner organisations in the consistent planning, funding and implementation of actions to realise improvements in service efficiencies and consumer outcomes.

Strategic Framework for Suicide Prevention in NSW 2022-2027

The Strategic Framework for Suicide Prevention in NSW 2022-2027 continues the journey towards zero suicides in NSW. It sets out the state's priorities for further coordinating, integrating and investing in suicide prevention activities, while building on what is already in place.

The Framework has been developed by the NSW Mental Health Commission and the NSW Ministry of Health in collaboration with people with lived experience of a suicide attempt or suicide bereavement, government agencies, mental health organisations and experts in suicide prevention.

The Framework has been written to inspire, drive and coordinate a whole-of-government response to suicide prevention in NSW. It has been informed by extensive consultation with people with lived or living experience of suicidal distress, people caring for someone through suicidal crisis, people who are bereaved by suicide, and people from across the suicide prevention sector.

NSW Aboriginal Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy 2020-2025

The NSW Aboriginal Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy 2020-2025 supports NSW Health services to plan and deliver culturally safe, accessible, responsive and flexible mental health and wellbeing care in partnership with Aboriginal people and communities.


The overarching of the Strategy is for all Aboriginal people of NSW to have access to holistic and culturally safe services that provide the best opportunity for improved mental health and social and emotional wellbeing.

This strategy is the foundation for change that will support a future way of working. It reflects the NSW Government's commitment to closing the gap between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people in NSW.

The strategy is supported by three goals:

  • Goal 1: Holistic, person and family-centred care and healing
  • Goal 2: Culturally safe, trauma-informed, quality care
  • Goal 3: Connected care

These goals are based on the NSW Strategic Framework and Workforce Plan for Mental Health 2018-2022 and align with the NSW Health vision of a sustainable health system that delivers outcomes that matter to patients, is personalised, invests in wellness and is digitally enabled.

The strategy provides clear direction to NSW health services on:

  • co-designing mental health service planning, delivery and monitoring with Aboriginal services, people and communities
  • delivery of holistic care that responds to Aboriginal people's mental health and wellbeing
  • delivering culturally safe, trauma-informed, and quality public mental health services
  • building and sustaining the Aboriginal mental health and wellbeing workforce
  • creating culturally safe work environments
  • delivering coordinated mental health services for Aboriginal people and strengthening partnerships with Aboriginal health and community services
  • implementing what works and building the evidence
  • strengthening performance monitoring, management and accountability.

Housing and Mental Health Agreement 2022​

​​​The Housing and Mental Health Agreement 2022​​ (HMHA 2022) is a commitment that NSW Health and the Department of Communities and justice (DCJ) will work together and with key stakeholders to achieve a shared vision that people with mental illness have:

  • timely access to safe, secure, appropriate hou​sing; and
  • mental health supports in place when needed, to support them to sustain that housing, live well in the community and lead their recovery.

The objectives of HMHA 2022 are to:

  • Re-invigorate effective, accountable and sustainable governance between mental health, housing, and homelessness services.
  • Deliver on a common cross-agency agenda through shared goals in partnership with mental health, housing, and homelessness services and other key stakeholders.
  • Embed agreed principles in policy, commissioning and service delivery.​

Current as at: Thursday 18 January 2024
Contact page owner: Mental Health