The Australian Psychological Society (APS) has congratulated Prime Minister Scott Morison and the Coalition on their election win, and called for the Government’s continued commitment to ease the mental health crisis in Australia.
APS President Ros Knight said the APS looks forward to working with the Morrison government to help deliver psychological care as part of a number of mental health programs announced in the recent Federal Budget.
Programs included the setting up of walk-in adult mental health treatment centres, greater investment in youth programs through headspace, healthy workplace programs, eating disorder centres and perinatal mental health support.
Ms Knight said: “These programs are a good start to reforming the mental health system, but there needs to be a solid commitment to continue the reform process or any gains will be lost.”
“Mental illness is the third highest cause of burden of disease in Australia, but we have a long way to go for it to receive budget parity with physical health.”
Ms Knight said a Government pre-election commitment had been to implement recommendations from the current Medicare Review Taskforce, including increasing the number of sessions for psychologists under Medicare if recommended.
“There is strong evidence that some people with mental health disorders require more than 10 treatment sessions per year. Providing adequate treatment to people who need it must be a priority.
“The APS looks forward to working with the Morrison Government on its mental health agenda over the next three years to ensure all Australians can access the care they need,” said Ms Knight.