Office for Mental Health

Mental health and suicide prevention are continued priorities for the ACT Government. In addition to a new dedicated ministerial portfolio for Mental Health, the ACT Government is establishing a new Office for Mental Health. 

The key objectives of developing the Office for Mental Health are to:

  • provide comprehensive oversight and increased understanding of the mental health system and how it could be improved in the ACT;
  • ensure person-centred and needs-based approaches across government initiatives;
  • improve the coordination, integration and targeting of services and facilities; and
  • drive a reduction in mental illness incidence, frequency and impact through the development and oversight of a comprehensive Mental Health and Wellbeing Framework.

In recognising the importance of establishing the Office for Mental Health to support the needs of those with lived experience of mental health issues and mental illness, their carers, service providers and the broader community, the ACT Government is seeking genuine and transparent engagement with all stakeholders. Feedback from this engagement will outline any issues of concern held by the community about the current mental health system and how these issues might inform the potential roles, responsibilities, functions and structure of the Office for Mental Health.

ACT Health is working with Synergia Consulting to facilitate these consultations. This includes targeted consultation with key stakeholders, people who access mental health services, in addition to public consultations. Information from these consultations will help to drive the development of the Office for Mental Health.

As part of this process, an online forum has also been developed, which is available at http://informis.co.nz/survey.asp?qnid=411&tag=mhofficeconsult until the 8th of February 2018. 

If you are interested in the establishment of the Office for Mental Health, ACT Health encourages you to participate in this forum and give your honest feedback. This will help us to create an effective and appropriate Office for Mental Health for the ACT community.

A Conversation Starter has been developed, which provides background information and provides an overview of how Mental Health Commissions function elsewhere. This paper may help to set the scene and inform your thinking around the Office for Mental Health and is available for download at Conversation Starter