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    We have heard so often that change and reform is just around the corner.
    That corner has become so big – it’s become a circle.

    Accountability & Transformation is a necessity. Accountability is at the heart of both community participation and customer focus. It entails an explicit or public responsibility to someone or some agency for an action untaken or supported for an omission of action. We need legislation that ensures accountability and we need to measure what is happening to people and if it isn’t – people need to be held accountable. Health professionals also, are to be held accountable for quality (efficiency, timeliness, appropriateness) of their practices and procedures. Transformation is about new values new attitudes, and new beliefs; it is about how these changes are expressed in the behaviours of people and institutions.

    The rhetoric has been right for a long time but the reality is not there.

    Will someone just do it….

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    Jenny Haines

    John, you are forgetting that unions have tried over the years to address many of the mental health service provision issues as well as the demands of their members for job security and wages and conditions improvements, and been pilloried for it. in 1985 as General Secretary of the NSW Nurses Association, I, and the mental health nurses of the system fought off the worst rationalising aspects of the Richmond Report. We didn’t win all our demands, but we tried, and I remember well, the families of mental health consumers being extremely grateful for our efforts. Now unfortunately, the unions are not as active on policy and service provision issues. Even if they were, governments would not listen to them. So old fashioned to have to listen to a union official talking about the provision of services to meet people’s needs, when it is all about budgetary stringency and efficiency.


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