'We have to continue to improve NZ's mental health services'

Author
Newstalk ZB Staff,
Section
Audio,
Publish Date
Thursday, 20 April 2017, 8:43AM
A damning new report is demanding an urgent funding increase for acute and community based mental health services (Photo / File)

The man in charge of our mental health services says it's good that we're having a debate about how to meet people's mental health needs.

It follows a damming new report demanding an urgent funding increase for acute and community based mental health services, and a Royal Commission of Inquiry.

SEE ALSO: Opposition calling for Govt to hold inquiry into NZ's mental health system

Director of Mental Health at the Ministry of Health, Dr John Crawshaw told Mike Hosking they are now seeing around 168,000 people a year.

"At the heart of some of this is, yes, we have to continue to improve our services and continue on a transformational journey we've been on.

"But also in order to have good mental health, that requires the assistance of the community and people around us."

LISTEN ABOVE AS DR JOHN CRAWSHAW SPEAKS WITH MIKE HOSKING

Meanwhile, advocates say an inquiry into the state of our mental health system must be independent.

Sophia Graham from the Mental Health Foundation told Nadine Higgins they want the politics taken out of the issue.

"We've asked for a cross-party health select committee inquiry into the mental health system.

"We don't want this to turn into political football. We've been asking for change for a long time, we've been advocating for change for a long time."

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