We did it!

Parties commit on the health of people with intellectual disability!

 The major parties have responded to our call for action to address the stark physical and mental health inequalities experienced by people with intellectual disability.

Thanks to all our supporters who got behind our campaign, we couldn’t have done it without you!

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The Coalition commitments are centred on:

  • Improving the capacity of health services to act on the health of people with intellectual disability,
  • Action on mental health by Primary Health Networks (PHNs) and
  • Inclusion of people with intellectual disability in the Healthier Medicare reforms.

The Labor Party and Greens

  • Make broad commitments to inclusion of people with intellectual disability in health initiatives.
  • Commit to PHNs including a focus on people with intellectual disability in their work.

All parties commit to continuing to work with CID on health issues.

We have been very active in recent months in calling for the inclusion of people with intellectual disability in current Commonwealth Government mental health reforms.

Thank-you to the more than 750 people who wrote to Health Minister Sussan Ley on this important issue.

All too often, health reforms do not include people with intellectual disability.
This is what was in great danger of happening with the mental health reforms.
Recent conversations with the Department of Health gives us some hope that people with intellectual disability will be included in the mental health reforms though much more needs to be done.

The full commitments of the parties are below.
CID welcomes these commitments by the parties and looks forward to working with them after the election!

Liberal/National Coalition

turnbullThe Turnbull Coalition is supportive of projects that build a sound evidence base about the mental health needs of people with intellectual disability and that support more accessible mental health services, including better equipping mental health workers. One example is National Health and Medical Research Council funding for the University of New South Wales (UNSW) Partnerships for Better Health Project: Improving the Mental Health Outcomes of People with Intellectual Disability which commenced in May 2014 and is due for completion in 2018.

Further, the Intellectual Disability Mental Health Core Competency Framework: A Manual for Mental Health Professionals was launched in March 2016, and will help address the challenges faced by the mental health workforce in managing mental health disorders in people with intellectual disability.

Primary Health Networks (PHNs) were established in July 2015, and from July 2016 will play a key role in leading a regional approach to plan, integrate and commission mental health services at a local level, in partnership with relevant services and with a new flexible primary health care funding pool. PHNs will work directly with general practitioners, other primary health care providers, secondary care providers and hospitals to facilitate improved outcomes for patients, including those with intellectual disability.

As part of the comprehensive needs assessments on the mental health services, gaps and needs of people living in their local region, it is expected that PHNs would identify and address the needs of people living with intellectual disability and mental illness. The baseline needs assessments may identify primary mental health care service gaps for people with intellectual disability, as a local priority.

 In addition, the NSW Council for Intellectual Disability has been involved in providing comment and advice on the guidance being developed to support PHNs to meet the mental health needs of their communities, including people with intellectual disability.

The Turnbull Coalition is committed to meeting the needs of people with intellectual disability across its broader Healthier Medicare reforms, including the development of ‘health care homes’ for those with complex ongoing health problems.

The Turnbull Coalition welcomes an open and ongoing dialogue with the NSW Council for Intellectual Disability in relation to the needs of people with intellectual disability and health services and programmes at the federal level.

Labor Party

shortenLabor understands that people with intellectual disability experience poorer health and can face significant difficulties with the health system. Labor is committed to addressing these issues, ensuring that people with intellectual disability are not excluded from health initiatives and have their needs met.

A Shorten Labor Government will work with Primary Health Networks to ensure that the needs of people with intellectual disability are included in their policies and procedures.

Labor is committed to consulting with all relevant stakeholders regarding future reforms in the mental health and disability space.

We welcome the opportunity to work with organisations such as the NSW Council for Intellectual Disability to ensure the best possible outcome for the sector.

  The Greens

greensThe Greens will work to ensure that Commonwealth policy, including both physical and mental health initiatives, will include consideration of the needs of people with intellectual disability.

As part of our commitment to support for people with intellectual disability, the Greens would work to ensure that the needs of people with intellectual disability are considered as part of the PHN rollout. The Greens will work to identify how best to make sure the needs of people with ID are reflected, including through data collection and charging PHNs to develop guidelines on how to meet the mental health needs of people with ID.

The Greens also will work to ensure that the physical health requirements of people with ID are reflected in PHN rollouts and approaches, including through appropriate guidelines and consultation.

The Greens have a firm commitment to consultation with community members, community organisations and health professionals as we have demonstrated on many occasions in the past, and will work to reflect the needs and concerns of people with ID in the Parliament, and consult with stakeholders as reforms are implemented.

The Greens strongly support the work of the NSW Council for Intellectual Disability, and are keen to continue consulting closely on the range of issues that impact people with intellectual disability.

ph. 1800 424 065
Level 2, 418A Elizabeth St
Surry Hills NSW 2010

email: info@nswcid.org.au
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NSW Council for Intellectual Disability