ACT proposes new agency to oversee mental health, addiction services

 The ACT Party released its election policy for mental health this morning.

It wants to upgrade the government's pre-existing Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission, by giving it $2 billion of funding currently spent by district health boards and the Ministry of Health.

The party's deputy leader and health spokesperson, Brooke van Velden, said the current system is a disorderly mix of funding arrangements with providers struggling to deliver a coordinated response.

"Drug and alcohol abuse can destroy families and lives, and yet treatment is difficult to access and the choice of treatments don't work for everyone.

"We need a new approach to addiction and mental health in this country; it's clear the status quo just isn't working," she said.

Read article from radio New Zealand here