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The consumer and carer perspective

Priority Area 8: Ensuring that the enablers of effective system performance and system improvement are in place

The Fifth Plan states the following will be different for consumers and carers:

  • • Services will continue to improve over time.
  • • There will be improved opportunities to translate consumers’ and carers’ experiences into helping others to work through their own experience of recovery.

Most consumers and carers have not observed improvements in mental health services and have not been invited to contribute to service improvement.


In 2020, the majority of respondents (66% in 2020 and 69% in 2019; Figure PA8) indicated that they had not observed any improvement in mental health services in the past 12 months, while almost one in five respondents had observed improvements (19% in 2020 and 17% in 2019).

In both 2019 and 2020, the majority (69% in 2020 and 65% in 2019) of respondents reported that they, or the person they care for, had not been asked or encouraged by their care providers to share their experience to help improve the service. This represents a significant missed opportunity for service improvement.

Figure PA8: Observed improvement in mental health services in the last 12 months, 2019 and 2020

Sideways bar chart showing 2019 and 2020 data for the proportion of consumers and carers who did and did not observe improvement in mental health services in the last 12 months. In 2019 69% of consumers and carers did not observe improvement and 17% did observe improvement. In 2020, 66% of consumers and carers did not observe improvement, and 19% did observe improvement