A key mental health target has been missed, again, with 60% of patients forced to wait longer than eight hours for a mental health bed in Victoria’s emergency departments.
Data from the Victorian Agency for Health Information (VAHI) shows that the Andrews Labor Government continues to fail to meet their 80% target of admission within the clinically recommended eight-hour timeframe.
This is also a shocking blowout of more than 11 percent since March 2022.
Shadow Minister for Mental Health, Emma Kealy, said these continued waiting time blowouts are unacceptable when the Royal Commission was tabled years ago.
“Four years ago, the government was urged to immediately address the looming workforce crisis when the Royal Commission handed down an interim report.”
“Labor has failed to act and Victorians are paying a horrific price with access to critical mental health support worse than ever.”
“Even before the Royal Commission’s final report, we had dozens of reports exposing the crisis, including their interim report and reports from the Victorian Auditor-General’s Office.”
Ms Kealy urged the Andrews Labor Government to prioritise the mental health system in the upcoming State Budget, with particular focus on leveraging the mental health levy to address the sector’s workforce issues, critical infrastructure underinvestment, and critical funding for the AOD sector.
“Labor has botched the implementation of the Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health system and blown the massive mental health levy, and more than 60% of Victorians now can’t get the acute mental health support they need, when they need.”
“We know the mental health workforce is in crisis, and that’s putting the whole system into crisis – the government has simply left it far too late to expand and support the system.”
“Much has been said by Labor about fixing Victoria’s mental health system, so Victorians are right to be bitterly disappointed that yet another report shows wait times for critical mental health support continues to get worse and miss clinical targets.”
“Victorians deserve to be able to get the mental health care they need, when they need it, but Daniel Andrews and Labor are failing you when you need them the most.”