At the start of November, the federal government plans to cut psychological services in the Better Access program in half. People looking for a referral to a mental health specialist will get much less back from Medicare when they see a GP for a referral, and when they start treatment, people will find that they have half the time available to get better. Join with thousands of Australians in objecting to these cuts to psychological services – tell our politicians that cutting treatment short in mental health care is not on!
We are calling on the government to agree to a 12 month moratorium on this decision, but we need YOUR help to reinforce that message, and to show them that the general public do not support these harsh new measures they plan to implement in less than a months time.
To lend us a hand, all you need to do is tell them that you do not support their decision to cut services in the Better Access program. If you have a personal experience that demonstrates why their decision is the wrong way to go, share it with them, so they can see how this policy is a bad decision. You might also like to make some of the following points:
- Cutting psychological services will cost us more in the long run (here are some of the figures). Likewise, there are clear benefits to our economy and to our quality of life across society when we treat mental health disorders properly.
- Scientific research in mental health shows that people need 15 to 20 sessions (you can read about some of the research here). Offering just 10 is negligent and goes against the evidence.
- Rushing people through psychological treatment will increase stigma for people who dont get better in time. Some people wont even bother reaching out for help if they know they are going to get cut short so early in the process.
Please put a few words of your own together – it doesn’t have to be long – and send your views to both the Federal Minister for Mental Health, the Hon Mark Butler MP; and our Prime Minister, the Hon Julia Gillard MP. We have less than a month to make a differences here, so please consider sharing your perspective soon!
To email the Federal Minister for mental health: firstname.lastname@example.org
Or if you would prefer to write: The Hon Mark Butler MP, PO Box 2038, Port Adelaide SA 5015
To contact Prime Minister Julia Gillard, please visit the following link: http://www.pm.gov.au/contact-your-pm
You may also wish to contact other politicians, who you feel better represent your position. Here is a BIG list of them: http://tasmantimes.com.au/944/email-politicians/