One year on – Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System

March 2, 2022

The Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System delivered its final report on 3 February 2021 and it was tabled in Parliament on 2 March 2021.

 

The release of the final report from the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health System was a landmark moment. In the year since, major changes have taken place to reform mental health delivery and lay the foundations for further significant changes. This includes the development of a new Mental Health and Wellbeing Act, the start of the recruitment for the Interim Regional Boards, and the development and release of the Mental Health and Wellbeing Workforce Strategy. All this reform took place at breakneck speed as Victoria responded to the COVID-19 pandemic, and while the Department of Health was reforming and developing its own capabilities and governance structures.

VHA engagement and advocacy

The VHA, at the launch and beyond, has advocated on behalf of members and their best interests. This included welcoming the proposed reform while identifying areas that required improvement or further thought.

We consistently engaged with the reform, through Ministers, Department officials and other stakeholders, including the Victorian Mental Health Policy Network. This has included arranging a consultation, in partnership with Mental Health Victoria, on the new Act, advocating for greater consultation with public and community health services and calling for a slowing of the pace of reform due to the pressures of the pandemic.

Read our consultation responses on the Mental Health and Wellbeing Workforce Strategy and the Mental Health and Wellbeing Act.

Next steps

The VHA will continue to represent member interests as reform continues in the coming year.

The VHA is particularly conscious of the requirement on health services to develop Transformation Plans, and is already engaging with the Department of Health to support the delivery of Recommendation 62, which calls for modern infrastructure for ICT systems.