Centre manager for Grafton Headspace Jason Grimes.
Centre manager for Grafton Headspace Jason Grimes. Adam Hourigan

Headspace funding needed in rural areas

WITH nearly $52 million in extra funding on its way for Headspace from the Federal Government, the question is will regional towns like Grafton receive part of that?

It's understood $39 million of these funds is being allocated towards services and staff. The remaining $12.8 million is earmarked for expanding the digital portal eHeadspace.

The extra investment is on top of the $97.5million a year already committed by the Federal Government.

Headspace Grafton centre manager Jason Grimes said they had identified that rural, remote and regional areas needed more funding.

"Our running costs in comparison to metropolitan areas is a bit higher,” he said.

"Taking into consideration things like transport between here and Yamba, that has additional costs and access to service providers.

"Getting access to psychologists and GPs and attracting them to areas, I'm guessing some of the funding may go towards that. Who we have locally, they are amazing in the work that they do but they are overworked.”

GenHealth Inc chief executive Bronwyn Chalmers said there was still no specific detail on the funding.

"Last year the Coffs Harbour centre supported 1124 young people and the Grafton centre (which opened part-way into the year) supported 198 young people and demand for our services grows every year,” she said.

"The announcement of the additional funding can be taken as a clear sign of the government's ongoing commitment to Headspace as a key component of its national mental health strategy framework.”



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