Urgent action needed for mental health services

The groups, including Suicide Prevention Australia, SANE Australia, and the Black Dog Institute, say they have been given no advice about what will happen after that.

Some are already winding back services and contemplating staff cuts, with some workers having left their jobs already for more secure positions.

Medicare Local funding is set to cease at the same time, and the future of Medicare Local-delivered mental health programs is compounding the sector’s “perfect storm”, Mental Health Australia head Frank Quinlan told MO.

Primary Health Networks (PHNs) are expected to take over some services, but when and how they will do so is unclear. The government has not yet announced the successful PHN tender bids, and continues to defy calls to release the findings of a major mental health services review completed last November.

Mr Quinlan said the severely mentally ill could fall through gaps that Medicare Local-run