Mental Health Australia's submission to the Productivity Commission Inquiry into mental health

Anna Siddall

Mental Health Australia’s first submission to the Productivity Commission Inquiry into mental health welcomes the inquiry with hope because of its unique focus on the impact of mental health on economic and social participation.

If this Inquiry is successful, in ten years Australians should be able to celebrate how it incrementally but fundamentally changed the landscape of mental health in Australia. It should outline radical systemic reform but also be mindful of institutional stability. Australia should be able to measure a significant increase in mental health, in social and economic participation, in the nation’s productivity and in increased access to mental health services.

Mental Health Australia has called upon the Productivity Commission to land at a final report which addresses:

• the suite of mental health services and programs required to address anticipated need
• administrative structures to underpin the above-mentioned suite of services
• an approach to addressing the social determinants of mental health.

To assist the inquiry, Mental Health Australia’s submission provides preliminary advice to the Productivity Commission about how to target its Inquiry both in relation to the suite and mix of mental health services needed, and the structures which underpin those services and enable integration across the social determinants of mental health. This submission does not aim to provide a comprehensive set of issues related to components of the mental health service system as many member organisations will submit their own perspectives and advice on a range of potential strategies to improve mental health service delivery.

Mental Health Australia aims to continue to assist the Inquiry, working with KPMG, to provide a briefing to the Productivity Commission in relation to the Investing to Save report, advice around appropriate intergovernmental arrangements and international examples of best practice.

You can read the full submission here.

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