Psychiatrists strongly support announcement to make telehealth permanent

30 November 2020
 
 
 

The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP) has commended the Federal Government on the announcement of their intention to make telehealth permanently available to Australians.

After strongly advocating for the benefits of telehealth throughout the year, the RANZCP is looking forward to working alongside the government to make this a reality for those seeking mental health treatment, said RANZCP President, Associate Professor John Allan.

‘Confirmation from the government on their commitment to the permanent continuation of telehealth will provide assurance to service users and consumers,’ added Associate Professor Allan.

‘The availability and flexibility of telehealth provides Australians with more opportunity and ability to access appropriate physical and mental health care.

‘This is a historic step toward providing Australian consumers and practitioners with the foundations of a more flexible, more adaptable mental health system, through this permanent commitment to the availability of telehealth.

The RANZCP strongly believes the continuation of telehealth, as an addition to face-to-face consultations beyond COVID-19, will provide a significant opportunity to enrich the future of Australia’s mental health service system.

‘Investment, such as this, in mental health needs to be properly considered and made, as the benefits will far outweigh the cost to invest,’ said Associate Professor Allan.

‘We encourage the government to ensure that proper consultation is undertaken, with all stakeholders, throughout the process of implementing their plans for telehealth, as all aspects of health are important, both physical and mental.

‘Now is the time and opportunity to build the infrastructure to support a better, more accessible and sustainable mental health system, able to grow and adapt to user needs as demand requires it.

‘We look forward to working with the government and our fellow allied health to assist in the creation of what will be a significant change in our nation’s health system.’

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 media@ranzcp.org.