WA Budget

Posted on 14 September 2021
By Tegan Carrison, Executive Director, AAPi

The Western Australia Government has handed down the 2021-2022 Budget. In response to unprecedented demand on health and mental health services in Western Australia, the W.A. government has allocated $1.9 billion extra to support and expand these services.

Some of the key budget highlights and initiatives as they relate to our sector are:

Health

  • $3.1b total for health system expansion, including $1.3b for health infrastructure improvements, 332 new hospital beds, 100 new doctors and 500 new nursing positions.
  • Additional 50 FTE staff, including allied health, mental health, nursing, medical and support staff.
  • $487m allocated for Covid-19 response
  • $100m ED support package
  • $8m towards supporting hospital outpatient program
  • $1.8b for a new Women and Babies hospital

Mental Health

  • $495m to the Mental Health Commission for investments in mental health
  • $61.6m to ED mental health supports, including:
    • $37m to expand existing Community Treatment Teams and implement the pilot of Active Recovery Teams for people who frequently present to ED with complex mental health needs.
    • $24.6m to set-up new Mental Health Emergency Centres in Armadale and Rockhampton.
  • $2.3m to expand the virtual emergency medicine system to improve ED and ambulance flow
  • 109 of the 332 new hospital beds will be for mental health
  • $12.5m for a 20-bed AOD withdrawal unit in Perth metro area
  • $25.5m for Step Up/Step Down community mental health support in residential, short-term facilities
  • $49.1m to establish Mental Health Emergency Centres and the Bentley Secure Extended Care Unit.
  • $785,000 to fund a 12-month pilot program for a Women and Newborn Health Service by Karratha’s Women’s Place Inc. The program aims to provide women experiencing mental health concerns, domestic or sexual violence or childhood abuse with health, support and information. 

Children & Youth

$129.9m for Youth mental health services and initiatives

  • Establish a 10-bed Step Up/Step Down community health service within the Perth metro area with 24/7 psychosocial and clinical supports.
  • Expand ‘Alcohol. Think Again’ program for parents and young people and expand the ‘Strong Spirit Strong Mind’ early alcohol prevention program for aboriginal youth.
  • Additional 99 positions for staff in Child & Adolescent Mental Health Service and expand the CAMHS outreach services to wider metro area.
  • New long-term housing support program for Perth metro area
  • Drug education at selected metro and regional Youth Accommodation Support Services
  • 30 psychosocial support packages for young people with AOD and mental health issues living in Perth metro area.

Regional

  • Extend Mental Health Police co-response program into regional areas
  • $17.6m for wellbeing services for Aboriginal people in the Kimberley, Pilbara, Goldfields, Mid-West and South-West regions.
  • $1.7m for Active Recovery Teams post hospital admission supports for people in the Mid-West and Wheatbelt regions.
  • $8.6m for methamphetamine and alcohol initiatives and services
  • $14.8m for a Step Up/Step Down community mental health facility in South Hedland
  • $5.6m for upgrades to the Acute Psychiatric Units in Broome, Albany, Bunbury, Kalgoorlie and at Bentley Hospital.
  • $31.7m State-wide expansion of eating disorder treatment programs