MHN Incentive Program

Guidelines  l  Evaluation  l  Forms


 

The Mental Health Nurse Incentive Program

Funding for MHNIP is transferring to PHNs from 1 July 2016. For 2016-17 it will be quarantined and PHNs are required to commission mental health nursing services from the current network of MHNIP providers. From 2017-18 the funding will transition fully to the PHN flexible funding pool and MHNIP as it now exists will change as there will not be defined mental health programs.

There is updated information on the changes to MHNIP on the Department of Health website available at http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/work-pr-mhnip. Information is also available on the Department of Human Services website at https://www.humanservices.gov.au/health-professionals/enablers/mental-health-nurse-incentive-programme-guidelines.

The ACMHN has undertaken many activities that have highlighted the success of the MHNIP. It has also highlighted the problems, including feedback gathered from at least two consultations with nurses practising under the MHNIP, and which have been represented to the Government.

 

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MHNIP evaluation

The MHNIP evaluation was conducted during 2012 and the final report released on the Department of Health website on 24 December 2012.

The evaluation notes support for the program from GPs, psychiatrists and mental health nurses with evidence that patients experience improved health outcomes. However, the report highlighted a number of areas for improvement including the need to address the uneven geographic spread of MHNIP services, the lack of control over program expenditure, and the need to strengthen operational guidelines and improve data collection.

These are complex issues which require careful consideration and engagement with stakeholders.

Following the release of the MHNIP evaluation report in 2012 and initial consultations with stakeholders earlier this year, the department will continue stakeholder consultations through 2013 to re-design the program to address the findings of the evaluation. Key issues for consideration are:

  • program arrangements to deliver more equitable service distribution and manage demand in line with program resource allocation
  • appropriate program funding arrangements and
  • strengthened operational arrangements and timely and relevant data collection.

The department has established an expanded Expert Reference Group (ERG) which will play a key role in the re-design of the program. The first meeting of the ERG took place in Canberra in June 2013.

The ERG is chaired by the Department of Health and consists of peak bodies and organisations representing people living with severe and persistent mental illness, consumer and carer representatives, as well as peak bodies and health professionals delivering services to this client group.

Read more about the MHNIP on the Department of Health's website

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Program Guidelines

From 1 July 2016 the Department of Human Services will not administer MHNIP. Funding for MHNIP is transferring to PHNs from 1 July 2016. For 2016-17 it will be quarantined and PHNs are required to commission mental health nursing services from the current network of MHNIP providers. From 2017-18 the funding will transition fully to the PHN flexible funding pool and MHNIP as it now exists will change as there will not be defined mental health programs.

There is updated information on the changes to MHNIP on the Department of Health website at http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/work-pr-mhnip and the Department of Human Services website at https://www.humanservices.gov.au/health-professionals/enablers/mental-health-nurse-incentive-programme-guidelines.

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Forms

Due to the transitioning of MHNIP funding to PHNs, the following arrangements will apply for the remainder of 2015-16:

  1. Organisations must submit claims for all outstanding sessions to the Department of Human Services by close of business, 30 April 2016. Normal payment eligibility rules will apply. To ensure claims are received by 30 April 2016, claims should be faxed to 1300 581 573.
  2. From 1 May 2016, organisations must submit all claims for sessions to the Department of Health at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or via post to MHNIP Claims, MDP 11, GPO Box 9848, Canberra, ACT, 2601. Claims must be submitted using a new claim form, which will be available on the Department of Health website. New claims and previously rejected claims submitted on the Department of Human Services claim form will not be able to be paid.
  3. All claims for 2015-16 sessions must be received by the Department of Health by close of business Friday 15 July 2016.

To access the required forms please go to the Department of Health website at http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/work-pr-mhnip Go to the Department of Human Services for any information regarding forms up until 30 April 2016 at https://www.humanservices.gov.au/health-professionals/enablers/mental-health-nurse-incentive-programme-guidelines.

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