The Albanese Labor Government has announced that additional Medicare-subsidised psychology sessions, introduced by the Coalition, will be scrapped leading to concerns over mental health support for vulnerable Redlanders.
To support Australians through increased mental health pressure, the former Coalition Government doubled the number of Medicare-subsidised psychology sessions available through the Better Access initiative from 10 to 20.
Member for Bowman, Henry Pike, said that the cuts have come at the worst possible time for locals struggling with mental health challenges.
“Mental health support could not be more important to Redlanders as we head into the holiday period, with a new Covid wave peaking, and the cost of living and energy bills sky rocketing,” Mr Pike said.
“Despite the significant pressures still impacting our community, the Labor Government has decided to slash subsidised access to psychology sessions in half.”
Mr Pike said that the Labor Government has also placed the future of a new mental health service planned for Redland Bay under a cloud.
“The former Liberal and Nationals Government committed $3.4 million over four years to establish and operate a Head-to-Health adult mental health service at the Redland Bay satellite hospital,” Mr Pike said.
Mr Pike said that the Redland Bay location was selected after a rigorous process of assessment based on local needs evidenced by State Government and Primary Health Network proposals.
“Mental health issues are a growing concern in all Australian communities, but we know that Redlands is severely under-serviced when it comes to all levels of support.”
“One of my first actions as the new Member for Bowman, was to write to Labor’s new Health Minister to confirm that the Albanese Government was committed to this important project and the response was extremely worrying.”
“The Minister has sent the project back for further consideration and refused to provide any answers on whether the new Labor Government will deliver this project.”
“I am calling on the Labor Government to restore these subsidised services and to give the Redlands community certainty about the future of Redland Bay facility.”