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Budget 2004: Funding boost for Mental Health

Hon Annette King
Minister of Health

Funding boost for Mental Health Blueprint

The government is putting an extra $250 million in the next four years into implementing the Mental Health Commission's Blueprint, Health Minister Annette King says.

"The money picks up from the four-year allocation of $257 million made in 2000-01. We will continue this rate of increase until the Blueprint is fully implemented.

"The latest funding injection will enable District Health Boards to continue to plan ahead with certainty and will allow them to provide additional services. DHBs can now identify priority areas for new services and deliver such services in a timely way."

Ms King says another benefit of a secure funding path is that DHBs can work together at a regional level to provide specialty services and collaborate on region-wide issues such as workforce development."

Most of the new funding in 2004-05 will be allocated to the northern half of the country to help bring the Northern and Midland regions closer to the level of Blueprint funding in other parts of New Zealand.

"The government's aim is to achieve fair and equitable 100 per cent funding across all regions. Once we achieve that, we believe there will be sufficient mental health services for the 3 per cent of the population with the most severe mental health needs. We promised to do that, and we are determined to continue fulfilling our pledge as quickly as workforce resources allow us."

ENDS

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