The Palaszczuk Labor Government’s clinical review a number of into serious mental health events has been left in limbo after it was revealed the committee had not met once since the review was announced in May.
Shadow Health Minister Mark McArdle said Labor’s failure to act raised questions over the government’s commitment to improve the treatment of Queenslanders suffering from a mental illness.
“The review was meant to investigate alleged homicides or alleged attempted homicides involving the mentally ill to examine whether improvements in our health system are required,” Mr McArdle said.
“Lately there have been a number of tragic cases which sparked the need for such a review.
“The need for this review particularly hit home for me as I travel to Cairns given the tragic circumstances surrounding the death of the eight children in December last year.
“Critically, it is important to examine the systems in place and the services provided to ensure anyone suffering from a mental illness receives the very best care we can offer.
“The fact the Minister for Health has failed to progress this review in the last five months is appalling.”
Mr McArdle said the committee was due to deliver its report to the Government by October but that would now be delayed.
“The Minister’s incompetence has meant another four month delay until the final report will be delivered,” he said.
“In a further show of disrespect for the importance of this review, the Minister had not even appointed the remainder of the committee until a media outlet started to probe into the progress this month.
“Mental health is not something that should be pushed into the too hard basket.
“The Minister for Health hasn’t put enough emphasis on the priority of this review and needs to start doing what he promised in May and get on with the job.
“Queenslanders deserve better than a Government putting an issue as serious as mental health on the back-burner.”