New Zealand’s mental health and addiction services - February 2018

The monitoring and advocacy report of the Mental Health Commissioner

27 Feb 2018

The purpose of this report is to provide a systematic and evidence-based way of assessing the performance of mental health and addiction services and make recommendations for service and system improvement. The ultimate aim is to improve the well-being of people who need to use those services.

The structure and methodology of the report is designed to be replicated on an annual basis to identify trends over time and provide accountability for progress against recommendations and performance measures.

The report focuses on the performance of publicly funded health services in their response to the needs of people with mental health and addiction issues. Publicly funded health services include primary and community care services (such as a family doctor or midwife, non-governmental organisation (NGO) primary health support, and specific mental health and addiction interventions funded for delivery in primary and community care settings) and mental health and addiction services that are funded by district health boards (DHBs) and provided by either DHBs or NGOs.

The full range of services and providers that respond to mental health and addiction needs are not covered in this report, nor does it cover prevention activity and broader community responses required to promote population well-being and recovery.

This is HDC’s first report based on the monitoring framework developed with the sector in 2017. Unfortunately, we have not been able to cover a number of important consumer groups, including disabled people, gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and intersex populations, older people, and refugee, migrant and rural communities. Each of those populations has distinct and significant mental health and addiction issues, which deserve monitoring and advocacy focus in the future. Similarly, we have not been able to consider some important specialised services, including eating disorders, transgender support services, and problem gambling services, which also deserve attention, nor consider regional as distinct from national issues.

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