These days every Australian knows that sooner or later they will experience poor mental health, either personally or within their own family. What they may not know yet is that they will struggle to access the same quality healthcare that we all take for granted when we develop physical health problems.
Less than half of those with a need for mental healthcare access it, and if they do it is typically too little, too late and of variable quality. If we develop a mental illness we will die up to 20 years earlier than other Australians. We will not fulfil our true potential, and risk ending up on the scrapheap of welfare dependency and poverty. Mental health care and research suffer from serious underinvestment, yet they represent by far the best value for money for governments increasingly concerned about the sustainability of the health system.
– Prof Patrick McGorry