Australia's first National Mental Health Commission, coupled with national mental health data collection and strategic research, will contribute to the Government's agenda for mental health reform and inform future investment in mental health.
People living with mental illness, their families and carers need to have confidence that the Government's reforms can be achieved and that mental health services are consistent with best practice.
That is why the Government has allocated $32 million over five years, including $12 million in new funding, to establish a new National Mental Health Commission in the Prime Minister's portfolio. The Commission will provide leadership, drive a more transparent and accountable mental health system, and give mental health national prominence.
The core function of the Commission will be to monitor, assess and report on how the system is performing and its impact on consumer and carer outcomes. It will also provide a strong and consolidated consumer voice, which will contribute to more responsive and accountable policy and program directions within the sector.
The Commission's first task will be to produce a National Report Card on Mental Health and Suicide Prevention in 2012 — delivering on a 2010 Government election commitment.
The National Health and Medical Research Council will allocate $26 million over five years for mental health research priorities to build an evidence base to inform policy.
The Government will also continue its Leadership in Mental Health Reform initiative, which funds essential national data and reform activities that will be critical to the success of the new National Mental Health Commission.