Mental health is a major problem in drought stricken areas such as Charleville, but the new 2.9 million dollar funding package is hoping to change all that.
The QLD government is hoping this new package will help people in these areas deal with the problems caused by mental health that have been brought to light during these hard and challenging times.
The drought does not only cause physical and financial stress but also mental and QLD Health is hoping they can provide some help with that.
A new senior mental health clinician will be employed as part of this new deal. Working out of Roma, they will service the entire region and provide help where needed.
South West Hospital and Health Service Mental Health Program Manager Christine McDougall said the priority will be to ensure mental health services throughout our region, both government and non-government, are working together closely and effectively.
“They will help improve coordination and collaboration between all the key agencies in our region that are involved in mental health,” she said.
“They will also work with our existing mental health services to provide training, support and resourcing for health workers who are likely to come into contact with people who are considering or are at risk of suicide or who are experiencing mental health issues.”
The package will be a welcome boost for the struggling region as conditions are forecast to get worst over the coming the months and this increases the risk of symptoms for mental health.
“We want to ensure that anyone who requires mental health support anywhere in our region falls through any cracks between our various services.”
“Regional areas all over Australia face a bigger mental health burden than their city counterparts. Cases of depression and anxiety are higher in regional areas and particularly in men,” Ms McDougall said.
The $2.9 funding was announced by Health Minister Cameron Dick on 10 November and has been allocated to the State Government’s Tackling Adversity in Regional Drought and Disaster Communities through Integrating Health Services scheme.
The scheme allows for senior clinicians to be placed in nine rural and regional health services – South West, Central Queensland, Wide Bay, Darling Downs, Central West, Cairns and Hinterland, Townsville, Mackay and North West.