Fourth national mental health plan: measurement strategy

NMHP PI 7 Rates of contact with primary mental health care by children and young people

Page last updated: May 2011

  • Strategic issue - Prevention and Early Intervention.
  • Rationale - Early identification and intervention of mental illnesses results in better outcomes, however young people have low rates of help seeking for mental health problems.
  • Endorsement status - Endorsed by AHMAC Mental Health Standing Committee, February 2011.
  • Date last updated - January 2011.
Indicator details
National Mental Health Performance Framework
Data collection details

Indicator details

  • Description - Proportion of the population <25 years who have contact with primary mental health care services subsidised through the Medicare Benefits Schedule.
  • Numerator - Number of individual consumers aged <25 years seen by in-scope primary mental health care services subsidised through the Medicare Benefits Schedule.
  • Denominator - Estimated residential population aged <25 years.
  • Computation - (Numerator Denominator) x 100.
  • Calculation conditions
    • Coverage/Scope - Initially this indicator will be reported for the following MBS-subsidised primary mental health care services.GP and other services include MBS items 170, 171, 172, 2574, 2575, 2577, 2578, 2704, 2705, 2707, 2708, 2710, 2712, 2713, 2721, 2723, 2725, 2727. Also includes Item 2702, with effect from 1 January 2010.Clinical psychologist services include MBS items 80000, 80005, 80010, 80015, 80020.Other allied health services include MBS items 10956, 10968, 80100, 80105, 80110, 80115, 80120, 80125, 80130, 80135, 80140, 80145, 80150, 80155, 80160, 80165, 80170, 81325, 81355, 82000, 82015.
  • Definitions
    • Children and young people defined as persons aged <25 years.
    • Primary mental health care defined as specified MBS-subsidised mental health services.
  • Presentation - Percentage.
  • Disaggregation - State/Territory, and age, subject to sample size.
  • Notes - It is acknowledged that primary mental health care for children and young people extends beyond MBS-subsidised services, and that other providers should be included in estimates for this indicator, including community health centres, school counsellors and school health nurses, university and TAFE counselling services. Lack of available data relating to the mental health activity of these service streams prevents their inclusion. Additionally, a component of the work carried out by state and territory specialised public mental health services can be construed as primary mental health care but this cannot be reliably differentiated from other service provision.
  • Is specification interim or long-term? - Interim. Top of page

National Mental Health Performance Framework

  • Tier - Tier III – Health System Performance.
  • Primary domain - Accessible.
  • Type of measure - Outcome.
  • Level at which indicator can be useful for benchmarking - State/Territory.

Data collection details

  • Data source(s)
    • Numerator - Medicare Benefits Schedule (Medicare).
    • Denominator -Estimated resident population.
  • Data source(s) type
    • Numerator - Administrative by-product.
    • Denominator - Census.
  • Frequency of data source(s) collection
    • Numerator - Annually.
    • Denominator - Annually.
  • Data development
    • Medium-term - Investigations into data sources and methodologies to populate the additional activity have commenced.