The Liberal National Government will establish a new satellite Headspace service in Esperance, to provide mental health services to young people in the region.
Minister for Health, Greg Hunt said young people in the local area face many challenges and this new service will provide a significant boost of support.
“There are more pressures on young people today than ever before and the establishment of this headspace is so important in providing needed services in our region,” Minister Hunt said.
“I am committed to ensuring young Australians can get information, advice, counselling or treatment, when and where they need it.”
“I want our young people to know they are not alone on their journey, and that headspace is there to deliver quality frontline support and coordinate the right interventions for people who are at risk,” Minister Hunt said.
Headspace offers early intervention for 12 to 25 year olds in four key areas – mental health, related physical health, social and vocational support and alcohol and other drug use.
Minister for Indigenous Health, Senior Australians and Aged Care Ken Wyatt said early intervention is absolutely critical to helping young people with mental health issues.
“Headspace will deliver front-line services and coordinate the right interventions for at risk young people.
“The headspace network is at the heart of the Liberal National Government’s vision for youth mental health services and we are continuing to expand it,” Minister Wyatt said.
It is estimated that one in five young Australians aged 16 to 24 experience mental illness in any given year.
Three quarters of all mental illness manifests in people under the age of 25 so intervention early in life and at an early stage of illness can reduce the duration and impact of mental illness.
Federal Member for O’Connor Rick Wilson said he has been approached many times about the provision of more youth mental health services in Esperance.
“The Federal Government has already funded counselling services in Esperance, but there is no dedicated youth mental health service.
“As a result of community feedback that more needed to be done, I approached Minister Hunt to seek a departmental review, and a needs assessment was conducted.
“The department agreed that the isolation of the Esperance community warranted more support.
“It’s really important our youth receive support and care to help them stay on track or get back on track. Early intervention is important to minimise their lifelong impact.”
The Liberal National Government is prioritising better mental health for all Australians with a record $4.7 billion expected to be spent on mental health this financial year alone.
The Government’s strong economic management ensures the continued record investment of funding into vital health initiatives including mental health, life-saving medicines, Medicare and hospitals.