The 2018-19 State Budget is investing significantly in better services in health, mental health, child protection, police and emergency services.
“The State Government is investing $1.2 billion over the next four years in the key frontline service delivery portfolios of health and wellbeing, human services including the domestic violence assistance, child protection, police and emergency services, in line with the commitments that South Australians endorsed at the state election,” said Treasurer Rob Lucas.
“The former government left a mess in key areas, but the State Government is working responsibly to clean up the financial mess and invest in the services that South Australians need and deserve.
“The Government has had to commit an extra $730 million to health because of the unrealistically high level of savings the former government had factored into health’s budget estimates.
“We are committing $45 million over two years to reduce elective surgery and colonoscopy waiting lists in our public hospitals, $12 million over four years to expand chemotherapy services in regional areas and we are reopening the Repat as a genuine health precinct.
“In the wake of the Oakden scandal presided over by the former government, we are establishing an Adult Safeguarding Unit, which will have statutory responsibility for responding to reports of abuse, neglect or mistreatment of vulnerable adults.
“Children in state care are further supported with an extra $30.9 million for child protection over two years (17-18 and 18-19), while palliative care and mental health programs, including suicide prevention services, will all receive a welcome funding boost.
“Importantly, we are also delivering on our key election commitments to address the scourge of domestic violence, by investing $11.9 million on a suite of measures to support women and children at risk – including 40 new crisis accommodation beds and extending a crisis hotline 24-hours a day.”
KEY HEALTH SERVICES COMMITMENTS
– $12 million over four years to expand country cancer services
– $45 million over four years to reduce elective surgery and colonoscopy waiting lists in South Australia’s public hospitals
– $20 million over four years for a Rural Health Workforce Strategy to recruit more doctors and health professionals in rural and remote SA
– $9.9 million over four years to maintain cardiac services at The Queen Elizabeth Hospital
– $23 million over four years to re-instate the High Dependency Unit at the Modbury Hospital
– Reopening the Repat as a genuine health precinct
– $16 million over four years to increase palliative care support
– $2.6 million over four years to establish an Adult Safeguarding Unit to protect our most vulnerable citizens
KEY MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES COMMITMENTS
– $2.5 million over four years for additional suicide prevention services
– $10 million over four years for a new specialist borderline personality disorder service
– $3.3 million over four years to establish a dedicated Paediatric Eating Disorder Service
KEY CHILD PROTECTION MEASURES
– An additional $30.9 million over two years to meet additional costs for children in care
– $8.8 million over four years to extend foster and kinship care support to carers of young people up to 21 years of age
KEY COMMUNITY SAFETY INITIATIVES
– $12.9 million over four years to extend operating hours for police stations in Norwood, Glenelg and Henley Beach with a new staffing model freeing up sworn police for the creation of a Rapid Response/Counter Terrorism group
– $5 million over two years for CFS station upgrades to support emergency services
– $9.5 million over four years to continue the state’s access to dedicated aerial firefighting resources and establish a new base in the Mid-North
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND HUMAN SERVICES COMMITMENTS
– $4 million over two years for an additional 40 domestic violence crisis accommodation beds
– $1.7 million over four years to enable the Women’s Safety Services’ domestic violence crisis hotline to operate 24-hours-a-day
– $5 million in interest-free loans to non-government domestic violence organisations to fund housing related capital projects
– $510,000 to support a state-wide trial of a Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme to enable women to request information on their partner’s criminal history
– The abolition of volunteer screening check fees from 1 January2019 in recognition of the importance of community service volunteers
– $2.6 million to continue to support the transition of state disability services to the non-government sector as a result of reforms under the NDIS