National News

Turnbull shakes up mental health reform

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has stepped up the government's response to mental health by demanding regular updates from its peak mental health body.

Mr Turnbull says the National Mental Health Commission will provide him with six-monthly updates and will now report directly to Health Minister Greg Hunt in a bid to strengthen accountability.

Lucy Brogden, wife of former NSW Liberal leader John Brogden who had a public battle with depression, has been appointed chair of the new-look commission, replacing renowned economist Allan Fels.

The commission will undergo a shake-up with a new board and a $2 million funding injection.

It will oversee implementation of the federal government's new national mental health and suicide prevention plan following agreement by states and territories at Friday's Council of Australian Government's health council meeting.

Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Lifeline on 13 11 14.

© AAP 2017

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