PM details Vic mental health funding boost

Victorian senior students and young adults will be the target of a mental health funding boost.
Victorian senior students and young adults will be the target of a mental health funding boost.

An extra $5 million in federal government funding will go to mental health support in Victoria as people struggle with the coronavirus outbreak.

The focus for the new support will be on year 11 and 12 students and young adults, Prime Minister Scott Morrison says, with the money to be divided among three charities - Kids Helpline, Lifeline and Beyond Blue.

"This will particularly focus on year 11 and year 12 students, young people who have lost their jobs and tertiary students," the prime minister said on Thursday.

"Mental health and suicide prevention is one of my government's highest priorities.

"For Victorians these last few weeks have been devastating and the loss of freedom that comes from the first lockdown, now combined with the second one with the Victorian wave, not being able to connect with friends and loved ones, concerns about employment, all of this takes a toll.

"Young mums who won't be able to have access to child care or have just gone through a long haul of home schooling now having to face another long haul of it. This will put incredible pressure on families."

The prime minister said he would receive a report on Friday from national mental health commission chief executive Christine Morgan and deputy chief medical officer Ruth Vine on what extra mental health measures might be needed for Victoria.

The extra 10 psychological therapy sessions available for Victorians under Medicare will also start on Friday.

Meanwhile, if a family has a child who attends a disability program and the facility is not open, the prime minister said its NDIS plan can be used to have disability support workers visit at home.

Lifeline 13 11 14

beyondblue 1300 22 4636

Australian Associated Press