Regional Mental Health Crisis Continues
At today’s meeting of Auckland Mental Health stakeholders, PSA delegates spoke of the urgent need to find both long and short term solutions to the crisis facing the Auckland mental health service.
“It was good to hear that everyone from the Ministry of Health to the DHB’s, acknowledge and share the PSA’s view that a very serious problem exists for Auckland mental health services. But while everyone agreed urgent solutions are required, nothing has yet been agreed to” said National PSA secretary Richard Wagstaff.
“The PSA called for immediate relief on crisis and acute services in the form of creating an interim facility to take the heat out of the system. A facility for the Auckland region is needed ASAP while we work on longer term plans to bridge the gap between acute and community services” said Richard Wagstaff.
“The significant disparity in funding between Auckland and other parts of NZ is also a serious concern. It’s bad enough that funding is nowhere near the levels required to implement the Mental Health Commission’s blueprint, but to make matters worse, Auckland is way behind the national average, so its no wonder we have the biggest problem””
While we keep searching solutions, the PSA will continue to support its members and their rights to practice safely. The action remains in place. Nurses will refuse to accept admissions over occupancy numbers or to work where there is insufficient trained staff.”
This action has been initiated in the in-patient units and will increase stress on the community and crisis teams where PSA will also consider measures to protect staff and client safety.”
A regional delegates meeting will be held next Friday to plan further action.