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Estimates: What are the government's plans for Partners in Recovery?

Partners in Recovery and Medicare Locals

Senator WRIGHT: I have been in other committee, so if I ask questions that have already been asked just let me know. I understand the department has been unable to advise what plans they have for the future of Partners in Recovery contracts where the lead agency is a Medicare Local. I am interested in whether the department can provide any information about what will happen in these instances.

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Estimates: data and funding for eating disorders

Eating disorders

Senator WRIGHT: I will now come to the issue of eating disorders. I am interested to know what data the department has in relation to the prevalence of eating disorders in Australia in 2014 or recently.

Mr Booth: Again, I do not have that information on me. We would need to take that on notice and see who the appropriate organisation is that collects that type of data. We can certainly look into it and we would be happy to make that information available.

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Estimates: Frozen indexation of mental health programs

Frozen indexation of mental health programs

Senator WRIGHT: I would like to ask now about the fact that it has emerged that there will be around about $20 million, arguably possibly more, of mental health program funding which will have its indexation frozen for up to four years. Is that correct?

Mr Booth: I am not sure. Could you give me some more information?

Senator WRIGHT: I might have to wait and get some more information about that.

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Estimates:

The Hidden Toll

Senator WRIGHT: I want to go to the recommendations of the 'The hidden toll: suicide in Australia', the Senate report into suicide in 2010. This might be a question for Senator Nash to start with. I note that their National Party's 2013 federal election policy platform included a commitment to implementing the recommendations of the Hidden Toll report. Is the minister able to comment on the government's intention to keep that commitment?

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Estimates: The Hidden Toll report

The Hidden Toll

Senator WRIGHT: I want to go to the recommendations of the 'The hidden toll: suicide in Australia', the Senate report into suicide in 2010. This might be a question for Senator Nash to start with. I note that their National Party's 2013 federal election policy platform included a commitment to implementing the recommendations of the Hidden Toll report. Is the minister able to comment on the government's intention to keep that commitment?

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Greens call for national campaign to tackle mental health stigma

The Federal Government should establish a national anti-stigma campaign to tackle ongoing misperceptions and discrimination around mental illness, say the Australian Greens.

Australian Greens spokesperson for mental health Senator Penny Wright said Australia is one of the only English-speaking OECD countries without a national anti-stigma social inclusion campaign.

"It is time for the Federal Government to step up and get serious about tackling stigma in Australia," Senator Wright said.

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Country communities say Abbott Government failing on rural mental health

The Abbott Government's performance on rural mental health has been overwhelmingly condemned in a new survey of rural mental health workers, consumers and community activists.

The survey, conducted by Australian Greens spokesperson for mental health Senator Penny Wright, revealed widespread dissatisfaction with mental health services in rural and regional areas.

Only five per cent of respondents thought local services were enough to meet local needs and 97 per cent wanted government funding for rural and regional mental health increased.

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