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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2015 Week 09 Hansard (Thursday, 13 August 2015) . . Page.. 2839 ..

$26.1 million over four years. Through this funding we will provide more adult community mental health services, including a local service for the Gungahlin region; additional intensive psychogeriatric care for people living in residential care or transitioning from an acute inpatient unit; a self-harm diversion service; a 24-hour supportive accommodation service; more in-home support for people experiencing acute mental health problems; and a redesign of the adult mental health services focusing on clinical management, psychological therapies, crisis care and home-based support.

In providing these services, one of our key goals as a government in the area of mental health is to destigmatise this condition and generate significant improvements in the health outcomes of patients with these issues. There will be more specialised services for patients at Canberra Hospital with extended operation of both the alcohol and drug and the mental health consultation and liaison services and the establishment of a new program of early identification for children presenting with emerging mental health illnesses or disorders.

This budget also continues the significant capital investment through the government’s health infrastructure program which has been underway since 2007. A further $33.8 million in this budget will take the level of allocation to over $900 million. This budget will fund a range of projects including a new $17.3 million central sterilising services facility at Canberra Hospital; 20 more beds across the public hospital system; $12.4 million for theatre upgrades and new medical imaging equipment at Calvary public including a new CT scanner; and, in addition, a new five-storey car park providing 704 spaces, an overall increase of 515 spaces for the Calvary hospital campus.

The health infrastructure program has delivered many projects, including, of course, the Centenary Hospital for Women and Children, the Canberra Region Cancer Centre, the adult mental health unit, a multi-storey car park at Canberra Hospital, and Gungahlin, Belconnen and Tuggeranong health centres. Over the next three years the health infrastructure program will deliver a substantial expansion of the emergency department at Canberra Hospital, the new secure mental health facility at Symonston, a bush healing farm, and continued redevelopment and upgrading of a number of other areas at the Canberra Hospital.

In addition this year we will see the commencement of delivery of the University of Canberra public hospital, which will be the first facility of its kind in the ACT. It will provide a new and innovative model specifically for rehabilitation and mental health care, it will be a teaching hospital to continue the integration of clinical and teaching environments, and it will provide research opportunities to benefit not only this facility and our community but the broader healthcare sector as well.

This ACT Labor government is also investing in health promotion and prevention services to reduce the increasing burden of chronic disease and related, more costly healthcare impacts. These initiatives will also increase business productivity in the ACT and health-related education outcomes.

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