Mental Health Funding Guidelines Released
7 August 2012 at 11:33 am
The Federal Government has released the funding guidelines for the $549.8 million mental health program called Partners in Recovery.
The Minister for Mental Health, Mark Butler, announced the guidelines at the 13th Australia and New Zealand Mental Health Conference held in Surfers Paradise.
The guidelines reveal how the new program will operate, how funding will be allocated, who can apply and how applications will be assessed.
Butler said the program would provide coordinated support and flexible funding for people with severe and ongoing mental illness with complex support needs.
“Partners in Recovery is designed to pull together services like income support, housing, employment, medical care and education which can often lack coordination,” he said.
The Partners in Recovery (PIR) funding would be available in each of the 61 Medicare Local geographic regions around Australia.
Access to funding for PIR organisations will be available through an Invitation to Apply (ITA) process. The funding round will have capacity to stage the engagement of PIR organisations depending on the quality of the applications assessed, and the readiness of organisations to commence PIR roll-out.
According to the Guidelines “the ITA will involve one competitive funding round that opens and closes to applications on nominated dates, with eligible applications being assessed against identified selection criteria and then ranked and prioritised against competing, eligible applications for the available funding.
The Guidelines say PIR organisations will have access to a limited amount of flexible funding which can be used to purchase services and appropriate supports when client needs are identified but are not immediately able to be met through normal channels.
It says the flexible funding pool will enable the PIR organisation to buy-in these services and supports, and is intended to be used to build system capacity for the benefits of PIR clients within the region, rather than divert responsibility from existing service providers.
Funding for PIR organisations will be available from January 2013.
“Organisations will be invited to apply for funding in the coming weeks and Partners in Recovery organisations will be established from late 2012.”
To supplement the guidelines, information sessions will be held in each capital city.