Ministry responds to mental health concerns
Last week Nine to Noon highlighted the issue of community mental health care after four serious attacks in Wellington in the last year by mental health outpatients - three of the victims died. Since those interviews, a report into the Waikato DHB mental health services has found staff there are struggling to cope with a big increase in demand. New Zealand had the highest number of suicides between July 2014 and June 2015 since provisional statistics were first recorded and Health Ministry figures show that demand for mental health services has gone up 21 per cent in the last five years. This morning we speak with the Director of Mental Health Dr John Crawshaw, the man charged with ensuring that mentally unwell patients are cared for both in hospital and in the community.