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Credit: Murray PHN

Murray PHN health report

Murray PHN health report

Credit: Murray PHN

Inaugural report focuses on mental health

Murray Primary Health Network have launched their inaugural Murray Health Report, focusing on mental health.

The report outlines some of the mental health data that the P-H-N uses to determine the level of need of services in the region.

Some of the data in the report includes;

- 19 out of 21 LGAs have a higher proportion of adults who have
been diagnosed with anxiety or depression by a doctor
compared to the Victorian average.

- 13 out of 21 LGAs have a higher proportion of adults ranking their
health as fair or poor compared to the Victorian average.

- 11 out of 21 LGAs have a higher percentage of people who spoke
with fewer than five people the previous day compared to the
Victorian average.

The PHN says there are many challenges faced in their 100,000 sq. km region with an ageing rural population, higher avoidable death rates, poorer cancer survival rates and lower life expectancy than metropolitan areas.

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CEO Matt Jones says he sees it as a report card to the community.

"We have mental health needs and there's significant investment and funding towards addressing mental health needs.

"In our organisation alone, we've funded services in our community of $115 million over six years.

"We think the community needs to know, not only about the needs, but where those services are."

According to Murray PHN, COVID-19 and bushfires have worsened mental health problems in the region, where there are higher rates of unemployment, lower socio-economic status and farming communities that experience drought, flood or fire on a regular basis.

Jones says services need to be tailored to the region.

"We have a collection of services that need to be organised so that we're able to receive care locally, whether that care changes.

"There [needs to be] a system response that moves away from 'one size fits all', 'one-stop shop' and having a system of mental health care that as your needs change, the care changes as well."

"Murray PHN firmly believes your postcode should not determine your health outcome.”

The full report can be accessed HERE.

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