Health plan a ‘pos­i­tive step’

Pilbara News - - News -

Lead­ing Pil­bara Abo­rig­i­nal health ser­vice Mawarnkarra has ex­pressed in-prin­ci­ple sup­port for a new State Gov­ern­ment men­tal health plan, but are con­cerned whether it will meet the de­mands of the re­gion.

The State Gov­ern­ment last week an­nounced the Men­tal Health, Al­co­hol and Other Drug Ser­vices Plan 2015-2025, de­vel­oped by the Men­tal Health Com­mis­sion, the Depart­ment of Health and grass­roots stake­hold­ers.

The plan is based on the rec­om­men­da­tions of the 2012 Stokes Re­view into men­tal health in WA and from re­gional com­mu­nity con­sul­ta­tion, in­clud­ing Kar­ratha and Roe­bourne, ear­lier this year.

WA’s Min­is­ter for Men­tal Health He­len Mor­ton said the plan’s fo­cus on re­gional ar­eas recog­nised the im­por­tance of lo­cal men­tal health treat­ment and ad­dressed men­tal health pri­or­i­ties flagged in fo­rums.

Im­prove­ments slated for the Pil­bara in­clude ex­pand­ing ex­ist­ing men­tal health, al­co­hol and drug ser­vices, adding 29 hos­pi­tal beds and 22 com­mu­nity-based beds for men­tal health care, and in­creas­ing beds and treat­ment fa­cil­i­ties for drug and al­co­hol detox­i­fi­ca­tion and re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion.

Mawarnkarra’s busi­ness de­vel­op­ment of­fi­cer Monique Wheat­ley said there was great de­mand for more men­tal health fa­cil­i­ties in the re­gion and the plan was a pos­i­tive step for­ward.

“We sup­port the fo­cus (of the plan) on com­mu­nity-based preven­tion and care. This model is prov­ing ef­fec­tive in pri­mary health within our com­mu­nity and across Aus­tralia,” she said.

How­ever, she said im­ple­men­ta­tion of the plan needed to start as soon as pos­si­ble and should ex­tend fur­ther than the re­port cur­rently pre­scribed to meet grow­ing de­mand. She also said the roll­out of the plan should be done through ex­ist­ing health or­gan­i­sa­tions aware of lo­cal cul­tural sen­si­tiv­i­ties.

Pil­bara-based Shadow Min­is­ter for Men­tal Health Stephen Daw­son echoed Mawarnkarra’s com­ments, say­ing with no im­ple­men­ta­tion date or fund­ing al­lo­cated more com­mit­ment was needed.

Mrs Mor­ton said she could not yet say where any of the planned men­tal health ser­vices would be lo­cated.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.