Locals who have been asking for better representation would be pleased to see our local MP Ian Blayney is making his voice heard on issues of importance in Geraldton.
Yesterday in state parliament Mr Blayney said his "grievance today is to the Minister for Mental Health".
He went on to express the need for a mental health unit in Geraldton and quoted some startling statistics:
"There has been a clear increase in the number of hospital admissions for mental health reasons in Geraldton. Between 2006 and 2010, there were 1701. The highest number of admissions was for serious psychiatric admissions, which was 880 admissions; for anxiety disorders there were 349 admissions; and for alcohol and drug disorders there were 380 admissions. Aboriginal people were admitted at a much higher rate than nonAboriginal people—3.4 times in the case of men and 2.4 times in the case of women. I note that the Geraldton Regional Aboriginal Medical Service is generally regarded as one of the best Aboriginal medical services in Australia. Emergency department admissions for mental health reasons rose from 550 in 2010 to 606 in 2012, which is a 10.1 per cent increase. Likewise, mental health inpatient admissions rose from 205 in 2010 to 263 in 2012, which is a 28 per cent increase. The increase in admissions add to activity pressure at the hospital and add to concerns regarding patient safety. These figures all point to the need for a dedicated mental health facility in Geraldton to service the city and midwest. I would welcome the minister visiting Geraldton to see the situation firsthand."
He believed that by building the mental health facility, a lot of burden would be removed from the overwhelmed Geraldton hospital.