20 June 2017

The NSW Government will invest a record $1.9 billion in mental health in the 2017-18 Budget, an increase of $87 million from last year.

Minister for Mental Health Tanya Davies said this Budget delivered on the Government’s commitment to provide the investment needed to improve the lives of those who depend on these critical services.

“A key initiative of this Budget is an extra $20 million to support further implementation of the NSW mental health reform, totalling $95 million this financial year, to shift the balance from hospital care to the community,” Mrs Davies said.

“This investment gives a helping hand to those who need it by expanding community mental health teams, community managed living supports and Schoolink Coordinators.”

The extra $20 million will provide:

  • $8.2 million to increase specialist community mental health teams
  • $5.4 million to fund other mental health initiatives, including investing in the workforce, strengthening capacity to support people with intellectual disability and mental illness, and developing a strategic framework for the mental health system.
  • $4.8 million to enhance psychosocial supports in the community
  • $1.6 million to continue transitioning long-stay patients to appropriate community accommodation.

Further highlights of the 2017-18 Budget include:

  • $23 million to increase admitted and non-admitted mental health patient services
  • $10.6 million to continue the Port Macquarie Hospital Mental Health Expansion
  • $3 million for social investment initiatives in mental health to provide non-government organisation support in the community to prevent re-hospitalisation
  • $1.1 million to recruit an additional 10 Mental Health clinical nurse educators to offer support to new graduates and undergraduates
  • development of a plan for a statewide Mental Health capital works program.

As part of a decade-long whole-of-government enhancement of mental health care, the NSW Government is continuing to put people, not process, at the centre of the mental health care system.