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National Disaster Mental Health and Wellbeing Framework 2021

4.1 Current arrangements

Local governments:

  • • have responsibilities for public health.

State and territory governments:

  • • deliver public acute and psychiatric hospital services or specialist units as well as a wide range of community and public mental health services;
  • • provide general health care that people with mental illness need (including hospitals); and
  • • fund community and social programs such as supported accommodation, domestic and family violence services, and children’s services.

The Australian Government funds:

  • • mental health-related services through Medicare and the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme;
  • • Primary Health Networks (PHNs) to work closely with state and territory Local Hospital Districts (LHDs) on regional planning and service provision; and
  • • community programs which support people experiencing mental illness as well as those grappling with other life challenges affecting personal and family wellbeing. These include telephone and digital crisis lines, crisis support services, and regionally specific and/or innovative services focused on specific populations or needs. It also includes income support, social and community support, and disability services.

The private sector:

  • • provides services funded in part by government and in part through private health insurance. These include clinically focused services such as the provision of assessment, diagnosis and treatment, and counselling and psychotherapy.

The non-government sector:

  • • provides services funded through government or privately. These range from general social support and wellbeing programs, such as neighbourhood centres and family support services, to community-based support for people who live with a mental illness.
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Acknowledgement of Country

The Commission acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands throughout Australia.
We pay our respects to their clans, and to the elders, past present and emerging, and acknowledge their continuing connection to land, sea and community.


The Commission is committed to embracing diversity and eliminating all forms of discrimination in the provision of health services. The Commission welcomes all people irrespective of ethnicity, lifestyle choice, faith, sexual orientation and gender identity.

Lived Experience

We acknowledge the individual and collective contributions of those with a lived and living experience of mental ill-health and suicide, and those who love, have loved and care for them. Each person’s journey is unique and a valued contribution to Australia’s commitment to mental health suicide prevention systems reform.