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Improving mental health in rural & regional Australia

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Riverbank Room 3

Lower Ground Level

Adelaide Convention Centre - North Terrace

Adelaide, South Australia 5000

Australia

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690,000 Australians live with complex mental illnesses like schizophrenia, personality disorders and bipolar disorder. These illnesses affect individuals and families in all walks of life. All up, complex mental illness touches 4 million Australians – 1 in 4 of all enrolled voters.

In March 2018, Labor and the Greens passed a motion in the Senate to establish an inquiry to investigate mental health services in rural and regional Australia. This inquiry will look at why Australians living in remote and rural areas are accessing mental health services at lower rates than in major cities and why there is a higher rate of suicide in country areas.

There are a number of reasons for these discrepancies, including a dearth of specialist personnel in rural and regional communities and the reality that far less is spent on mental health per capita in rural and regional Australia compared with cities.

Addressing these challenges and exploring innovative solutions such as online peer support backed by specialist telephone and online counselling has the potential to significantly change this situation, ensuring that people with mental illness in rural and regional communities are able to live a meaningful and contributing life.

Convened by Jack Heath, CEO of SANE Australia, this panel will bring together people with lived experience of mental illness, families, clinicians and thought leaders to explore how best to leverage the strengths, skills and experiences of those in our rural and regional communities, including those with lived experience of mental illness, to address this significant issue.

Panellists include:

Dr Michelle Blanchard
Director, Anne Deveson Research Centre
Deputy CEO, SANE Australia

Dr Jennifer Bowers
Managing DIrector/CEO, Rural & Remote Mental Health

Jessie Blaze
2018 SANE Australia Peer Ambassador

Prof Tim Carey
Director, Centre for Remote Health at Flinders University


At the conclusion of the panel discussion, Senator Deborah O'Neill,
Senator for New South Wales and Shadow Assistant Minister for Mental Health, will share her thoughts on this important topic.


***This event is being convened as part of ALP Fringe 2018. The event is free, but attendees must hold a pass for Fringe 2018 to gain entry.***

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Date and Time

Location

Riverbank Room 3

Lower Ground Level

Adelaide Convention Centre - North Terrace

Adelaide, South Australia 5000

Australia

View Map

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