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We’re Failing 5 million Aussies with Mental Health Conditions

More Australians are putting off mental health appointments due to rising costs of living. In 2022-23, 19.3% of people delayed seeing a mental health professional due to cost, compared to 12% in 2020-21. At the same time, in 2022-2023, there was a 4% decline in Medicare funded therapy sessions compared to 2021-22. When Health Minister, Mark Butler, halved the number of Medicare rebated sessions for psychology in January 2023, he promised to replace this system with more effective alternatives, but over a year later, has produced nothing. This continued inaction is severely impacting those who don’t have the funds to pay for psychological therapy once rebates run out, and those with chronic or severe mental health conditions who do not qualify for care in the public system. When will Mark Butler do more to help the five million Australians who experience chronic mental health conditions every year?