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Australian Federal Budget 2019: Investing in health

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On the Line welcomes the Government investment in prioritising mental health and suicide prevention.

With one in five Australians experiencing a mental health condition in the past 12 months, and almost half of us experiencing a mental health issue during our lifetime, the challenge is significant. At On the Line, we have seen a 23% increase in calls to Suicide Call Back Service and a 27% increase in calls to MensLine from 2016-17 to 2017-18, and they continue to rise.

Below are some highlights from the 2019 Federal Budget announcement.


Mental health and suicide prevention

The Government is investing $737 million over seven years for mental health. The investment includes $461 million for youth mental health and suicide prevention. The funding is intended to reduce wait times for youth mental health services and address youth suicide.

Here are some further mental health announcements:

  • $111 million for 30 new headspace services
  • $152 million to reduce waiting lists for headspace
  • $110 million to extend the Early Psychosis Youth Services program
  • $115 million to trial eight adult mental health centres
  • $54 million to establish four specialist residential facilities for eating disorders
  • $5.5 million to provide extra mental health services for people in Tasmania, Victoria and Queensland who have been affected by natural disasters
  • $5 million to implement suicide prevention initiatives targeted at Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
  • $2.5 million to increase mental health and wellbeing support for farmers in hardship in drought-affected communities.


Addressing domestic violence

The Government is investing $328 million to deliver its Fourth Action Plan under the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children 2010‑2022. The investment will be for frontline services, safe places for people impacted by domestic and family violence, prevention strategies, and more funding for 1800RESPECT.


Supporting carers

Over four years, the government will be investing $84.3 million to expand support for young carers, under the Integrated Carer Support Service. The package includes education financial support packages, training, access to respite, and expanding peer support and coaching.


Honouring veterans

Through the Putting Veterans and their Families First program, the Government is continuing to invest in the wellbeing of veterans and their families. The investment will provide earlier access to services, simpler ways to access treatment, and improved care for veterans with complex needs.


To see the full budget, visit the Federal Government budget website.


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