ACMHN welcomes support for Nurse Practitioners in the Federal Budget
Wednesday 10 May 2023
The Australian College of Mental Health Nurses (ACMHN) is pleased to see 1850 Postgraduate scholarships being funded for Registered Nurses to become Nurse Practitioners (NP) at a cost of $50.2 million. This program applies to those Credentialed Mental Health Nurses (CMHNs) who are interested in becoming NP.
CMHNs are a main partner in the NP solution of securing more highly trained nurses for clinical and community care across regional Australia, with the scholarships on offer to increase NP numbers nationally.
In recent months, the ACMHN has welcomed the passing of federal legislation to recognise the College and specifically the Credentialed Mental Health Nurse (CMHN) category.
“The College challenges the government to translate the recent CMHN recognition into allocated support and funding,” said ACMHN Chief Executive Officer Adrian Armitage.
“Whilst this budget extends critical services, addresses some gaps and workforce shortages, the ACMHN is looking to the government to support the mental health nurse network and is seeking the government and Minister Butler to lay the groundwork for future reform.”
“ACMHN is pleased to see $586.9 million for improved mental health. We look forward to actively working with government specifically on the CMHN cohort. This budget starts a process in which the government will respond to the areas of need identified in the Better Access Review, in subsequent budgets,” added Mr Armitage.
The College has set the standards for mental health nursing that recognise critical training and skills of mental health nurses (MHNs). There is a critical need for federal support and funding to train up MHNs in both the Public Health Network (PHN) and in community care.
“As the peak body representing over 24,000 mental health nurses, we challenge the governments and health departments to recognise the valuable contribution of our members. Funding is required for training, but more importantly a career path that sees MHNs rewarded for their specialist skills,” said Mr Armitage.
“Boosting mental health support for First Nations people in the lead up to, during and following the Voice referendum is a sensible step in an important discussion.”
For further comment, please contact ACMHN Media Officer, Sophie Howard on: (02) 6285 1078.