Department of Health

Working towards a new Mental Health and Wellbeing Act for Victoria

Five people stand with their arms around each other

The Royal Commission into Victoria’s Mental Health and Wellbeing System called for the government to repeal the current Mental Health Act 2014 and replace it with a new Mental Health and Wellbeing Act.

The Mental Health and Wellbeing Bill introduced to parliament today provides the legislative foundations needed to transform Victoria’s mental health system.

The Bill contains new rights-based objectives and principles that will drive the highest possible standard of mental health and wellbeing for Victorians.

The Bill also establishes new roles and entities recommended by the Royal Commission. This includes Regional Mental Health and Wellbeing Boards, a new Chief Officer for Mental Health and Wellbeing, and a new Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission.

The new Commission will provide statewide oversight of the mental health and wellbeing system. It will hold government to account for the performance, quality and safety of the system and the implementation of recommendations made by the Royal Commission.

The Bill also establishes Youth Mental Health and Wellbeing Victoria. This new entity has been created to provide critical system leadership in response to the serious mental health concerns of young Victorians and the ongoing impacts of the pandemic.

An Independent Review of key elements of the Bill will start in October 2022. The review will examine compulsory treatment criteria and alignment of decision-making laws.

The work of the Independent Review will be guided by Terms of Reference developed by consumers, families, carers, supporters, workers and service providers.

The new Mental Health and Wellbeing Act will commence in mid-2023. This ensures time to communicate the changes in the new Act to the sector.

There will be education and support for consumers, families, carers and supporters to understand their rights under the new legislation. Training will also be provided for the mental health and wellbeing sector on the requirements of the new legislation.

Read more about this historic milestone in Victoria’s 10-year reform journey on our activity update page.

Reviewed 21 June 2022


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