Sat, 23 Oct 2021

WELLINGTON, Sept. 22 (Xinhua) -- The New Zealand government is taking a new 10-year approach to support people who experience mental distress, Health Minister Andrew Little said on Wednesday.

Long-term pathway to mental wellbeing is the first 10-year plan of its kind that targets the cause of mental distress and also sets out how to achieve healthy futures, Little said in a statement.

The mental wellbeing of New Zealanders will be better supported through this program as it requires government agencies to work together to promote and protect mental wellbeing, he said.

"We have heard loud and clear the need to place greater focus on promotion and prevention, as well as providing specialist support for those with complex needs," he said, adding mental wellbeing and equitable care should be attainable for everyone.

The pathway sets out short-, medium- and long-term actions to be taken across the government with a focus on key areas such as technology, workforce and investment to make transformative change, the minister said.

An external oversight group that encompasses clinical, lived experience and governance expertise has also been established, Little said.

Through the plan, people who experience mental illness and distress can be better supported to have the resilience, tools and support they need to regain their wellbeing, he added.

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