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The Challenge

  • The NSW health system is complex and difficult for consumers and carers to navigate.
  • Communities lack access to timely, affordable services, particularly in regional, rural and remote NSW.
  • Increasing numbers of people present at emergency departments with health conditions that could be managed within the community if services were available and affordable
  • The aftermath of the pandemic and recurring natural disasters continue to have a significant impact on people’s mental health, including those needing support for housing and domestic violence.

What’s In the 2024-20245 Budget?

  • $480.7M to ease pressure on emergency departments, including $171.4M to expand the NSW Single Front Door and establish VirtualADULTS, and $31.4M to scale up Hospital in the Home.
  • $130.9M Family Start package including:
    • $40M to support child health in the first 2,000 days.
    • $21.3M for the Waminda Birth Centre and Community Hub.
    • $17.9M for the paediatric allied health workforce, funding an additional 32 staff.
    • $15M to improve vaccination rates for target groups.
  • $111.8M over 4 years to support community mental health and wellbeing, including:
    • $30.4M to expand Community Mental Health Teams in targeted areas including regional NSW.
    • $40M for the Pathways to Community Living Initiative.
    • $39M to establish a new Mental Health Single Front Door through Healthdirect.

NCOSS Position

  • NCOSS welcomes investment in mental health services, keeping people out of emergency departments, access to child health services, and vaccinations for vulnerable groups.
  • The NSW mental health system is not funded to meet the needs of the community. NCOSS calls on further funding across the entire mental health system with priority investment for community-based mental health services.
  • Investment in greater access through VirtualADULTS is positive, but virtual care does not meet the ongoing unmet need for face-to-face services across NSW, particularly regional areas.
  • NCOSS again calls on the Government to invest in the public dental health system. Dental conditions are the leading cause for potentially preventable hospitalisations and almost 80,000 people are currently waiting for public dental assessment and treatment.

Read our other analyses

Housing and Homelessness — (Download as a PDF)

Cost of Living — (Download as a PDF)

Disasters and Building Resilience — (Download as a PDF)

Child Wellbeing and Development — (Download as a PDF)

Sector Sustainability — (Download as a PDF) 

Domestic and Family Violence — (Download as a PDF)

Health — (Download as a PDF)