A key message from the Government in the budget lockup was that this Budget aims to deliver on their election promises. It is a credit to the Government and the relevant Ministers that they have ‘hit the ground running’ as this budget has been developed in a very short space of time.

Here is a summary of what we can see in the mental health space and a few other things that caught our eye, as well as links so you can go to the source yourselves.

You can read an in depth budget analysis from SACOSS from a broader social services perspective here.

From a health perspective, the budget aims to fix key problems such as ramping, emergency department waits and hospital bed flows. This includes significant mental health investments in beds and workforce development.

From a human rights perspective we now urgently need significant investment in community support, particularly psychosocial, to ensure these investments are effective in assisting people to recover in the community. Access to housing is critical as are alternatives to Emergency Departments. Without this investment, the ‘flow’ into and out of beds will remain problematic as demand for crisis and acute care will continue to be higher than it should be. Outcomes for people exiting beds will be suboptimal without access to the support they need to rebuild their life and recover in the community.

Mental Health

  • Mental health beds – 72 in metro area $157.8m over 4 years

o   24 beds at Queen Elizabeth

o   24 at Modbury

o   24 at Noarlunga

  • 12 more beds at Mt Barker hospital
  • 6 more mental health beds at Mt Gambier hospital $26m
  • 10 more beds at Women’s and Children’s Hospital $20m
  • 20 more hospital in the home Mental health community beds $12.7m over 3 years (we are seeking clarification about what the model looks like)
  • 20 homelessness discharge beds $4.5m over 2 years (we are seeking clarification about what this looks like)
  • $3.1m boost to Community Mental health teams over 4 years
  • $800,000 to fund LELAN over 4 years
  • SIDS and Kids SA $800,000 over 4 years
  • Mate in Construction $240,000 over 4 years
  • 100 mental health and learning support specialists in SA schools $50m over 4 years
  • 6 more specialist mental health nurses at WCH
  • 5 more psychiatrists and 10 child psychologists to CAHMS $7.8m over 4 years

Here are some further links for you to dig deeper in to this year’s budget –

Budget Overview – check out pages 8 & 9 relevant to mental health and page 18 for homelessness supports here.

To see all the media releases go here.

For Health specific announcements go here and for Mental Health here.

The Budget Measures Statement is here on pg 49.

And if you want to see full budgets in detail go here.