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Expansion in support for mental health conditions in Federal Budget welcomed, says Australians for Mental Health

Australians for Mental Health are welcoming measures a $361 million package for mental health outlined in today's Federal Budget aimed at increasing the level and types of support available to people suffering from mental health conditions but have urged that more is needed to meet the level of crisis in the country.

The Federal Budget today outlined a range of measures to combat the mental health crisis currently facing the country.  

These included;  

  • A plan to create a new national online mental health service in 2026 which will give people access to up to 10 free sessions each year free of charge and without a referral. 
  • A $30m funding increase to the Head to Health mental health networks for people with moderate to severe needs. 
  • An increase to free services accessible through existing Medicare mental health walk-in centres.  
  • A $27.1 million commitment to place more allied health graduates and student clinicians into Headspace centres around Australia. 

“The budget is a modest but welcome response to Australia’s mental health crisis,” Australians for Mental Health CEO, Chris Gambian, said. 

“Ensuring that every Australian can access the quality mental healthcare they need, where and when they need it, at a price they can afford, must be an urgent national priority.  This budget helps get us a step closer to that goal." 

The Budget was also an opportunity to address the structural drivers of mental ill-health, such as poverty, employment, housing and cost-of-living.  

“It is important to recognize that measures to reduce living pressures such as rent assistance and energy rebates are valuable mental health measures, because they will also help to reduce pressure which we know can trigger, or exacerbate, people's level of mental distress.” 

About Australians for Mental Health: 

Australians for Mental Health was founded in 2014 to campaign for fundamental change in the way the country thinks and acts about mental health. Our mission is to ensure that Australia starts putting mental health at the heart of our national life. 

Media contact: Simon Black at [email protected], or on 0420 488 219. 

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