Funding boost for youth mental health services

Keira Jenkins |

Shannon Fentiman has spoken of the importance of treatment for youth mental ill health.
Shannon Fentiman has spoken of the importance of treatment for youth mental ill health.

As demand for youth mental health services increases, the Queensland government is pledging a $330 million funding boost.

A $68 million portion of the funding will be used to expand acute mental health programs in 12 hospitals and health services across the state. 

“Families often don’t know where to turn and it can be the most distressing time in a young person’s life,” Health Minister Shannon Fentiman said on Friday.

Leah Matthew’s teenage daughter has complex post-traumatic stress disorder. 

She’s been using an acute mental health response team, which Ms Mathew’s said has been a “lifeline” for her daughter.

“We’ve been coming a lot lately in the last year,” she said.

“I just can’t say enough about it because she’s still living, she’s at home and she’s getting the care that she needs.”

There’s been a significant increase in young people accessing the acute response service at Logan, which is recording about 120 child visits a month.

Three years ago the team said about 30 young people accessed their services each month. 

Ms Fentiman said the funding will allow for an extra 33 clinicians to work in the acute response teams across the state. 

 “We are seeing increasing demand,” she said.

“If we’re not investing in the mental health of our children then we’re not going to really succeed in breaking that cycle of mental ill health.”

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AAP