Headspace watches impact of mental health rebates

YOUTH mental health network headspace has revealed it is “scoping the impact” of the Federal Government’s funding cuts to the Better Access program on the GPs working in its centres as doctors continue to fight the measures.

Headspace was widely trumpeted as a beneficiary of the $1.5 billion mental health centrepiece in the 2011–12 Budget, with the Government allocating the funds for another 60 youth centres, on top of the existing 30.

But the package is funded partly by cutting rebates for GP patients on mental health plans. 

Just two-thirds of existing headspace sites currently have a GP despite the model’s blueprint calling for every centre to have one.

Asked how the rebate cuts would affect the centres’ GPs and the centres’ ability to recruit and retain GPs, CEO Chris Tanti told MO that “headspace would be very concerned about anything that reduced its capacity to incorporate general