5. Integrated community delivery

We need to develop community-based services and supports for everyone on the continuum from severe distress and addiction to wellbeing promotion:

  • Organise service agencies and workforces from different sectors and disciplines to integrate and collaborate.
  • Co-design open-door, one-stop-shop community wellbeing hubs that deliver a range of comprehensive responses – in primary health settings, marae, community centres, churches, workplaces, schools, higher education and online.
  • Reduce and eventually phase out inpatient units and replace them with home and community-based services for people in crisis or with high needs.
  • Build the capacity of the population to take care of their own and each other’s wellbeing, to respond to people in distress, and to utilise Big Community.

New language to replace ‘mental illness’ and ‘mental health’

From time to time we need to change our terminology. In the early 1900s people stopped using the term ‘lunatic’ and after World War Two they stopped referring to ‘mental hygiene’. We think ‘mental health’ and ‘mental illness’ have now reached their use-by date. Both terms confine the issues to health; they don’t convey the wider social, psychological and spiritual determinants and consequences or the need for comprehensive responses. We propose that ‘wellbeing’ replaces ‘mental health’ and ‘distress’ or ‘mental distress’ replaces ‘mental illness’.