Mental Health Commission CEO steps aside as probe announced

The head of the National Mental Health Commission has stepped aside as the government launches an investigation into allegations of bullying and dysfuction within the agency.

Christine Morgan

Announcing the review on Tuesday, Health Minister Mark Butler said CEO Christine Morgan had voluntarily stepped aside while Professor Deb Picone investigated whether the allegations, raised in a recent media report, could be substantiated.

It will also conduct a review of culture and capability to ensure the commission is able to provide a safe working environment, and inquire into the commission’s financial sustainability.

“To ensure the government and the public continue to have confidence in the Commission, I have initiated an independent investigation into the allegations and issues that have been raised in the media,” Mr Butler said in a statement.

“Christine Morgan has voluntarily stepped aside as the Commission’s Chief Executive Officer while this investigation occurs.”

The NMHC is tasked with monitoring and reporting on mental health investment and providing the government with policy advice on improving mental health and suicide preventions.

Deputy Chief Medical Officer Dr Ruth Vine will act as CEO during Ms Morgan’s absence.

Professor Picone is a former CEO of the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care.

The NMHC is also reportedly the subject of an investigation into a whistleblower report relating to the awarding of a $535,000 graphic design contract.

Comment has been sought from the NMHC.

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One thought on “Mental Health Commission CEO steps aside as probe announced

  1. Instead of looking after yourselves why aren’t you looking after the many homeless mentally ill people? Families who do care for their afflicted family members are stretched to breaking point trying to look after those with serious mental illnesses instead of getting any assistance from governments that closed all the facilities – mostly because of problems with staff. And don’t even mention the NDIS – as useful as tits on a bull. They can’t differentiate between the daily level of care required for a mentally ill person and a paraplegic. Ask the families and carers. Time for a major shake-up, and NOT just about staffing. But then, if you can’t look after your own staff why would you be capable of looking after those who actually need it?

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