Reforming Australia’s Mental Health System

Australia’s mental health service system is undergoing significant change with PHNs having an enhanced role in mental health, the roll-out of the NDIS, federal and state inquiries underway and a range of new initiatives at the Commonwealth and State/Territory level. Yet many  Australians are vulnerable to service system gaps, there is confusion surrounding funding and accountability divisions between Commonwealth and State/Territory jurisdictions, and GPs grapple with what the Mental Health Commission calls ‘the missing middle’ – the services and supports which sit between the General Practitioner and the Emergency Department.

A panel of experts at this year's National Conference will discuss how Australia can create and manage an effective and comprehensive mental health service system. 

Issues to be discussed include: 

  • How mental health services are funded
  • Identifying service gaps, overlaps, duplication and metro-regional divides
  • GP pathways for better mental health care
  • What should accountability in mental health services look like and how can this be best achieved
  • Workforce issues: qualifications, distribution and access
  • Overcoming Commonwealth-State divides and how to integrate parallel systems: Commonwealth (PHNs and NDIS) and State & Territory (hospitals, community-based) to better meet the needs of consumers, clients and patients
  • Models: capitation, Activity Based Funding, block funding, NDIS funding and other models that create innovation, flexibility, adaptability and can ensure individuals enter ‘no wrong door’