Jonathan Nicholas, CEO of ReachOut.com by Inspire Foundation, today welcomed the Government’s delivery of its pre-election commitments, whilst also urging the Government not to lose focus on mental health prevention and early intervention as essential components of an efficient and effective mental health system.
“In a tough budget, the Government’s delivery on its pre-election commitment is good news for the mental health of young Australians,” said Nicholas. “With one in four Australians experiencing a mental illness, and 75% of those illnesses having their onset before the age of 25, research and services targeted at young people are wise investments.”
Currently, poor mental health persists as a massive cost to the Australian economy, as shown in research published in 2012 by EY and ReachOut.com by Inspire Foundation.
“The Counting the Cost report showed that poor mental health in young men alone costs the Australian community more than $3 billion every year,” said Nicholas. “We must intervene early and minimise the impact of mental health difficulties not just because it helps Australians to stay well, but also because it’s good economics.”
Further evidence in the Crossroads report published in 2014 with EY shows that prioritising funding for mental health prevention and early intervention has the added benefit of helping to prevent massive increases in the cost of service provision into the future.
“The current inquiry by the National Mental Health Commission (NMHC) into the provision of mental health services in Australia presents an opportunity to ensure that existing services are effective and efficient,” said Nicholas. “Australia’s mental health system as a whole must be constructed in a way that prioritises mental health promotion and prevention, and enables the greatest number of people possible to receive appropriate help.
“We’re optimistic the NMHC’s review will build on the findings of Counting the Cost and Crossroads, by recognising the role that prevention and early intervention services can play in achieving outcomes that work socially and economically.
“ReachOut.com looks forward to continuing to work with both the NMHC and the Government to ensure that Australia’s mental health investment is well-targeted, ensuring that efficient and effective services are there to help.”
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Director of Marketing and Communications
ReachOut.com by Inspire Foundation
0499 977 123
About ReachOut.com by Inspire Foundation
ReachOut.com is Australia’s leading online youth mental health service. Designed to help young people under 25 tackle everything from finding motivation to getting through really tough times, the service provides practical tools, forums and information in a safe and anonymous online environment. ReachOut.com is the help young people need, where and when they need it.
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