Mental health 10-year plan to guide government decisions – Minister Little

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2021-09-22 04:58:59

The government has announced a 10-year plan for improving mental health outcomes, and set up an external oversight group.

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Photo: RNZ / Samuel Rillstone

The plan, called Kia Manawanui, would set out short, medium and long-term actions to be taken by the government, Health Minister Andrew Little said He announced the move this morning.

It was a response to the He Ara Oranga report into mental health and addiction services in New Zealand, and would focus on areas like technology, workforce and investment, he said.

“The mental wellbeing of New Zealanders will be better supported through this programme as it requires government agencies to work together to promote and protect mental wellbeing.”

The external oversight group would be chaired by AUT professor and Waitematā District Health Board chair and former journalist and equal opportunities commissioner Judy McGregor.

It would also include expertise from clinicians, governance entities and those with lived experience, Little said.

He said the government had in Budget 2019 spent $1.9 billion over four years to improve mental wellbeing, and in two years had rolled out free mental health and addiction services to 240 general practices.

Some $1m had been spent on additional funding for Youthline, and 74 Māori and 18 Pacific suicide prevention initiatives had also been funded, he said.

You can watch the announcement here.

More to come…

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