Order Paper and questions

Questions for oral answer

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House of Representatives
5 April 2012
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4. Mental Health Services, Youth—Prime Minister’s Project

[Sitting date: 05 April 2012. Volume:679;Page:1730. Text is incorporated into the Bound Volume.]

4. Dr JACKIE BLUE (National) to the Associate Minister of Health: What reports has he received about the Prime Minister’s Youth Mental Health Project, announced yesterday?

Hon PETER DUNNE (Associate Minister of Health) : The addition of more nurses in schools has been welcomed by the Nurses Organisation as an ambulance at the top of the cliff initiative. The Chief Families Commissioner, Carl Davidson, applauded the initiative, saying that $62 million spent wisely should go a long way to providing the support that vulnerable youth need to improve their overall well-being and make a difference in preventing youth suicide. The Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor, Sir Peter Gluckman, amongst other things said that the origin of these initiatives is an exemplar of how policy formation in complex areas can be based on informed scientific advice. Save the Children New Zealand has also enthusiastically welcomed yesterday’s announcement.

Dr Jackie Blue: What was the genesis of the Prime Minister’s Youth Mental Health Project, and how has it evolved?

Hon PETER DUNNE: In 2009 the Prime Minister asked Sir Peter Gluckman, as his Chief Science Advisor, to advise on issues that young people have progressing through adolescence. The Improving the Transition report highlighted a number of concerns. The Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet was then asked to lead a cross-Government project to improve existing services and introduce better and more effective initiatives. Officials from the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Social Development, Te Puni Kōkiri, and Treasury consulted with the front-line service providers, practitioners, youth mental health workers, principals, Whānau Ora providers, and others, and as a result the comprehensive package that was announced yesterday was developed.