From The Longreach Leader - Friday, September 6, 2019

More people are becoming aware of mental health - and responding

By Zoe Thomas

UNDOUBTEDLY, outback communities are some of the strongest in Australian society — the resilience, strength and courage in the face of drought and environmental disasters are equally as commendable as they are jaw-dropping.

Therefore, it is of no surprise that these added pressures and stressors will impact and have an effect upon the mental health of the individual — so much so, that the Central West has experienced a surge in the number of residents seeking mental health support services.

Resultant to these comments, this evidence became the basis of a mental health roundtable discussion held in Longreach last week. The Central West Mental Health Roundtable was the second of its kind following the inaugural event last year.

The Roundtable was jointly organised by the Western Queensland Primary Health Network
(WQPHN) and the Remote Area Planning and Development
Board (RAPAD), which encompasses seven shires in the Central West and co-ordinates fi nancial counselling in the region.

Held at the Birdcage Hotel on Wednesday, August 28, the WQPHN in collaboration with other organisations came together to discuss mental health services in the region, with the revelation that service providers have observed service rates more than doubling in the past year.

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