Topics: BUDGET, Elections

TAHUA 2017: Mental Health receives $224 million

Mental Health will receive and extra $224 million over four years which includes $124 million focused on innovative approaches.

Social Investment Minister Amy Adams and Health Minister Jonathan Coleman say this reflects social investment is a priority for the Government.

Amy Adams says, “It’s one of our most complex social issues, and it is having big impacts across the employment, housing, health and justice sectors.”

 “Mental health issues can lead to much poorer outcomes for these people and their families. It’s important to come up with innovative solutions which keep up with the evolving needs of New Zealanders.”

“In line with international trends here in New Zealand we’ve seen an increase in demand for mental health and addiction services in recent years,” Dr Coleman says.

Cabinet is expected to consider a new mental health and addiction strategy which will include a ‘new approach’ to dealing with mental health issues.

The Budget 2017 funding includes:

  • $100 million for a new cross-government social investment fund that will target innovative new proposals to tackle mental health issues.
  • $4.1 million for the Ministry of Social Development to trial integrated employment and mental health services.
  • $11.6 million to help the Department of Corrections better manage and support prisoners at risk of self-harm.
  • $8 million in Vote Maori Development to extend the Rangatahi Suicide Prevention Fund.
  • $100 million for DHBs to support local mental health and addiction services as part of their total new budget spend through Vote Health. Individual DHBs are able to invest more if they feel it is required.

Through Vote Health mental health and addiction services funding has increased from $1.1 billion in 2008/09 to over $1.4 billion for 2015/16.