MHCA CEO's Weekly Update - 16 May

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This Week

Federal Budget

This week was obviously dominated by the federal budget, and I am certain your email will be full of analysis and commentary.  I commend the policy and communications teams here at the MHCA for producing our updates on budget night and getting the information to you, our members and friends.

Over coming weeks we will continue to provide updates as further information appears, and as the budget headlines strart to translate into tangible changes in policy and activity that affect the mental health sector.

As part of the budget coverage, we produced a short video describing the key highlights that will impact on the mental health sector. If you missed it, you can view the video here.

The MHCA policy team also produced an excellent written summary document that can be viewed here.
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The MHCA’s media release on the budget can be downloaded from our website.

For those seeking some further detail, I attended a post-budget briefing giving my Minister Dutton on Thursday moring, and there is further detail about major health measures given there - GP Co-payments, Medicare Locals, and more.  The speech can be downloaded here.


Day to Day Living Program

On Wednesday Josh Fear presented at the national forum for the Day to Day Living program, organised by Community Mental Health Australia. There was much interest at the forum in what the future holds for clients and service providers of this program, since it is (partly) in scope for the NDIS.  If you weren’t there you may want to ask Josh for more inforamtion

Mental Health Conference Funding Program

The successful recipients of funding under the April round of the Mental Health Conference Funding Program have been announced. The full list of successful conferences is available on our website and I would encourage you all to consider attending these great events. The next funding round will open in September 2014.
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What does the budget mean for Carers?

Out friends at Carer’s Australia have produced a summary of the what the federal budget means for Carers and it can be found here.
More Info



Schizophrenia Awareness Week 11-17 May

This week is Schizophrenia Awareness Week. Our friends at the Mental Illness Fellowship of Australia (MIFA) are calling on us all to help break down the stigma surrounding this ‘last big un-discussable illness’ and help the more than 1 million Australians whose lives are affected by schizophrenia. For people in regional areas, MIFA have developed an initiative to provide support and information. Mi Networks is a free service and more information is available on the website. Read More

National Volunteer Week 12-18 May

We are also celebrating the 25th Anniversary of National Volunteer Week. Each year Volunteering Australia celebrates the contribution that volunteers across the country make to improving the lives of everyday Australians. To mark the 25th Anniversary, a lapel pin is available for purchase from the Volunteering Australia website. Thank you to all the incredible volunteers, your energy and drive make a genuine difference to people’s lives. Download

International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, Intersex-phobia and Transphobia

Tomorrow is the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, Intersex-phobia, and Transphobia (IDAHOT). Since its inception in 2004 this day of action has continued to evolve towards greater inclusivity. The National LGBTI Health Alliance particularly seeks to include the experiences of those people who have intersex status, trans experience, non-binary genders, who choose not to label their identities, or those for whom identity is fluid. Phobia, discrimination and prejudice are not only cultural issues - they are health issues and impact broadly on our communities. For more information please visit the website. More Info

The Freedom Stories

A new series of short films called ‘The Freedom Stories’, was launched this week to coincide with IDAHOT. A collaboration between LGBTI community health leader ACON and, aims to bring focus to young people’s experiences and the importance of reaching out to them in tough times. For more information about the films please visit the website. More Info

National Reconciliation Week 27 May to 3 June

National Reconciliation Week is a time to build better relationships between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and other Australians. As discussed in previous updates, the MHCA is currently developing a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) and as part of that process we will be celebrating Reconciliation Action Week with a staff morning tea that will include a screening of the National Apology to the Stolen Generation. There are many things your organisation can do to get involved in the week so visit the website for some great ideas. More Info

Mind and Its Potential Conference

The Mind and Its Potential Conference will be held from 27-28 October in Sydney. The MHCA is an endorsing body for this Conference and as such have secured a 20% discount rate for our members who register before 27 June. The conference features 30+ world renowned international and local speakers and attendees will discover how individuals, organisations and companies can do extraordinary things to improve wellbeing and productivity. MHCA members, watch out for the discount code in next Wednesday’s Media Summary. More Info

Meeting for Minds International Mental Health Forum

The Meeting for Minds International Mental Health Forum was held this week and you may have heard Professor Ian Hickie of the Brain and Mind Research Institute discussing the event on ABC Perth radio. Professor Hickie spoke of the need to set a new research agenda in mental health. You can listen to the full interview here. Read more

Findings from the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health

Women’s Health Australia this week released a report, Mental Health: Findings from the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health. The report provides a comprehensive picture of women affected by poor mental health and how they are supported. The full report, or the executive summary, can be downloaded from the website. Read more

Eating Disorders and Obesity Conference

A reminder that the Eating Disorders and Obesity Conference will be held from 26-27 May at QT Hotel on the Gold Coast. The conference will encompass contemporary best practice, multidisciplinary care and research into the epidemiology, clinical manifestations and treatments relating to eating disorders and obesity. It will also examine Government and Health Sector Initiatives. Full details including registration information is available from the website. More Info

Warm regards


Frank Quinlan
Chief Executive Officer

T: 02 6285 3100  |  M: 0409 655 460
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Mental health begins with me!


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