Mental health week is an important opportunity for us to focus around our mental health in addition to our physical health.
The theme is to take time for our mental health as this is an opportunity to think about what things we could do differently, or in addition, to ensure that we either maintain good mental health, but also if we are experiencing a whole range of psychological distressors, to think about how do we get some help for that, early.
Shifting minds was released by the Queensland Government last year.
It was a plan designed to shift the mental health system over the next five years, and when I say shift, it’s about improving the quality of the system when people need mental health services.
But it was also about starting to have a focus upstream in terms of how do we promote wellness, prevent illness and intervene early wherever its possible.
The plan talks about the individual, so it talks about better lives; It talks about a population health approach, which is about investing to save; but is also talks about how we improve the whole system so it's working better for individuals.
It also has a spectrum of interventions from promotion, prevention and early intervention to treatment, continuing care, recovery and support.
A roadmap to success
That’s what the plan tries to achieve, and we’re in the first phases of implementing that plan and developing a roadmap which will help government agencies and the broader community to actually take ownership and implement the plan in full.
So we’re working with these agencies to develop a clear roadmap around where we’re going in terms of implementation, who’s taking responsibility for what, and what are the key leverage points and pressure points that we can utilise to achieve the change required.
People who want to be involved in mental health week this year have many opportunities, but some of the major ones that people may want to take part in are the:
- Walk for Awareness, which is sort of the beginning of mental health week
- then we’ve got the Mental Health Week Achievement Awards
- we’ve also got the mental health Week Art Exhibition
- and finally, we’ve got the Walk for Wellness.
Please remember this is an opportunity for you to take time to think about your own mental health
But it’s also an opportunity for you to take time to think about: 'how can I support the reform that’s required in the MH and drug and alcohol systems in Queensland to achieve better lives for people living with mental illness'?