29 Jul 2022
- Much of the detail about the mental health budget is yet to be released but the headline is an additional $1.645 billion over five years, plus an additional $28.5 million in capital funding under a new 5-year plan, Better Care Together: a plan for Queensland’s state-funded mental health, alcohol and other drug services; and to meet Queensland’s obligations under the National Agreement on Mental Health and Suicide Prevention.
- The funding will support new beds for adolescent, young adult, perinatal, eating disorder and older persons mental health services. This includes a focus on rehabilitation care, additional community care units, adolescent day programs and Step-Up Step-Down services to help people transition from hospital or avoid hospital admission in the first instance.
- It also supports beds for new crisis response services and will provide more than 1000 new staff to operationalise this plan.
- Additional funding is also being provided to support enhanced provision of psychological supports to be delivered by non-government providers.
- To fund the enhancements to mental health services, the Queensland Government has introduced a mental health levy to provide a sustainable funding source.
- The QAS will commission an additional four Mental Health Co-responder services in the Darling Downs, Mackay, Wide Bay and Sunshine Coast.
- Mental health infrastructure
- $21.4 million for Ipswich Hospital Expansion Stage 1A, which includes new mental health facilities for adults and older persons
- $63.9 million as part of the Rural and Regional Infrastructure Package for construction of a new mental health facility at Cairns Hospital
- $45.5 million for an expansion of the Gold Coast University Hospital to deliver a secure Mental Health Rehabilitation Unit
- $19.7 million for the Alcohol and Other Drug Community Treatment Program. The program will deliver a new 45 bed adult Alcohol and Other Drug Residential Rehabilitation Service in West Moreton, 28 bed adult Alcohol and other Drug Residential Rehabilitation Service in Wide Bay and 10 bed youth Alcohol and Other Drug Residential Rehabilitation Service in Cairns
- $17 million for the Fraser Coast Mental Health Service Enhancement, providing a new adult acute mental health inpatient unit at Hervey Bay Hospital and sub-acute older persons mental health unit refurbishment at Maryborough Hospital
- Queensland Health advised the Parliamentary Mental Health Select Committee that it spent an estimated $1.35 billion on mental health in 2020-21 and a further $139 million on alcohol and other drug services (Reference Budget Paper No.2: Budget Strategy and Outlook 2022-23, p. 11 and p. 90).
Broader Health Budget
- Additional funding of $9.78 billion over six years. Focused on expansion program with largest ever investment in new hospitals and new beds. New hospitals and hospital expansion projects will deliver 2509 extra beds over six years.
- Additional funding to support growth in the health workforce - $6.78 billion in additional operational funding over the next four years to employ an extra 9475 staff.