The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP) Queensland Branch congratulates and welcomes the re-election of Deputy Premier Steven Miles and his reappointment as Health Minister.
The RANZCP Queensland Branch looks forward to continuing its productive relationship with the Minister and his office.
‘With the Palaszczuk Government re-election, the RANZCP is eager to continue working towards the improvement of the mental health system in Queensland’, said RANZCP Queensland Branch Chair, Professor Brett Emmerson AM.
‘We are looking forward to the further development of our relationship with the re-elected Queensland Government and seeing the implementation of their election promises.
‘The pandemic has created an ongoing level of uncertainty and stress in our community and the possible economic downturn will only prolong these circumstances.
‘We are also seeing our community mental health services under enormous pressure to continue to manage our existing patients suffering from severe mental illness who require additional support and treatment.
‘The RANZCP Queensland Branch welcomes the recent announcements by Premier Palaszczuk, including $46.5 million for localised mental health community treatment and support services, and are eager to see these promises come to fruition as soon as possible.
‘However, mental health services in Queensland are being overwhelmed with some services reporting a 10% to 20% increase in presentations, particularly of the acutely unwell.
'The current commitment will not meet the coming tide of mental ill-health within the community and we encourage the newly re-elected government to look towards a more long-term approach.
‘In the lead up to the election the Government also promised 9,475 additional frontline health care worker roles, we strongly recommend at least 10% of these new positions be dedicated to mental health.
‘The number of crisis presentations in children and young people, as well as more cases of self-harm in our Emergency Departments and demand for eating disorder services is particularly concerning. The only way to address the demand is a commitment to recurrent, ongoing funding in mental health services.
‘We understand the Queensland state government is facing a challenging economic environment, but our community will not recover from the effects of COVID-19 if mental health is not appropriately managed, supported and resourced.
‘Now is the time to be caring for our state’s immediate and long-term mental health.’
For all other expert mental health information, visit Your Health in Mind, the RANZCP’s consumer health information website.
ENQUIRIES: For more information, or to arrange an interview call Sarah Carr on +61 437 315 911, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.