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The Hon Dan Tehan MP
Minister for Veterans' Affairs
Minister for Defence Personnel
Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Cyber Security
Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Centenary of ANZAC

The Hon Greg Hunt MP
Minister for Health
Minister for Sport

28 March 2017

Government welcomes NMHC review into veterans’ mental health

The Government today received the National Mental Health Commission’s (NMHC) review of suicide and self-harm services for veterans and members of the Australian Defence Force (ADF).

Minister for Veterans’ Affairs and Defence Personnel Dan Tehan and Minister for Health Greg Hunt acknowledged receipt of the review.

“The Government has a responsibility to the men and women who defend our nation and we are committed to addressing veteran and ADF suicide,” Mr Tehan said.

“The Government will look closely at the recommendations in this review and respond in due course. We will also release the full review to the public on Thursday.

“This review will complement other Government initiatives to tackle suicide.

“We have made mental health treatment free for depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder and drug and alcohol misuse conditions for anyone who has served one day in the full-time ADF.

“And last year the Government released the first-ever robust data on the incidence of suicide among past and present ADF personnel and more specific findings will be released this year.”

Minister Hunt said the findings and recommendations from the Review would be an important consideration in the rollout of mental health services.

“We’ve already announced the establishment of 12 suicide prevention trial sites across Australia – including one in the Townsville region that will have a focus on veterans’ mental health,” Mr Hunt said.

“The Commission’s report will be used as a guide to inform ongoing trial design and suicide prevention strategies developed and implemented.”

Media enquiries:

Minister Tehan’s Office: Byron Vale, 0428 262 894
Department of Veterans’ Affairs Media: 02 6289 6203

Veterans and Veterans Families Counselling Service (VVCS) can be reached 24 hours a day across Australia for crisis support and free confidential counselling. Phone 1800 011 046 (international: +61 8 8241 4546). VVCS is a service founded by Vietnam veterans.