The Gillard government pre-election commitment of $277 million to tackle suicide prevention is a welcome announcement, though only addresses the immediate need for suicide prevention of 12,500 people are at risk annually.
It falls far short of the mark of health care needs of a significant proportion of our community. To postpone additional measures for a new term of government 3 years down the track, lacks vision and commitment towards a significant sector of the health needs of our nation. Whilst the Liberal’s plans for 1.5 billion is more comprehensive and realistic, it is likely to come at the expense of other health services, which are also needed in an aging population.
Whilst people with mental health conditions need treatment.
We should seek to address some of the other socio-cultural factors that also contribute to mental health problems, such as drug abuse (especially the prevalence of amphetamines). Other illicit drugs and instances of self medications.
Re-investigate and invest in the areas of family and education. Which has a strong influence in the development of character, particularly in one’s formative years of growing up.
To drive a car a licence is needed. Education made available for parents to help develop their parenting skills and understanding of child development; is a worthy investment for our future.
Our education system could include elements addressing character and self-development; such as Emotional Intelligence, Education In Human Values, meditation and mind training techniques; and an understanding of the influence of media. All can be beneficial as preventative measures.
Such a curriculum could be the basis of an ‘educational revolution’ in it’s truest sense.
Picture source: http://mountcope.wordpress.com/2009/07/