Tue, 31/07/2007

Mary Porter and former Victorian Premier Jeff Kennett, may not agree on many things. However, they are certainly of like mind when it comes to seeing depression as a major health issue.

Mr Kennett recently met with members of the Legislative Assembly and their staff in his capacity as the Chairman of beyondblue.

beyondblue was established by Mr Kennett to raise the awareness of depression in our society and also to increase the recognition and responses to depression in Australia as a serious health problem.

The Council of Australian Governments, (COAG), has recognised that mental health is a major concern, and the National Action Plan on Mental Health has funded a package of measures worth about $4 billion over the next 5 years.

The plan will focus on

  • promotion, prevention and early intervention
  • improving mental health services
  • providing opportunities for increased recovery and participation in the community and employment, including more stable accommodation
    providing better coordinated care
  • building workforce capacity

"With 1 in 5 of us suffering a mental illness during our lives it is important that we continue to make people aware that there is help available," Mary Porter commented .

"Support from beyondblue is easily accessible and I urge those who believe they may need help to ring 1300224636 or visit http://www.beyondblue.org.au "