Our objective is to contribute to better and equitable mental health and wellbeing outcomes for people in Aotearoa New Zealand. We are kaitiaki of mental health and wellbeing in Aotearoa.
We will perform an enduring role in transforming Aotearoa New Zealand's approach to mental health and wellbeing.
The Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission officially unveiled its new name Te Hiringa Mahara at a ceremony in Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington on 5 July 2022.
Te Hiringa Mahara signifies positive energy, thoughtfulness, encouragement, confidence and strength. It inspires and ignites our inquiring and inquisitive minds, illuminating and liberating the potential within.
Our new name embraces our role as kaitiaki of mental health and wellbeing and is an expression of the commitment to being an organisation grounded in Te Tiriti o Waitangi.
Te Hiringa Mahara is inclusive of all people, Tangata Whenua and Tangata Tiriti. It is enduring and presents a challenge for us to live up to.
Te Hiringa Mahara: Te hinengaro tūmata tōrunga pai o te whakaaro nui - Igniting minds through positive energy and thoughtfulness.
Te Hiringa Mahara is producing a series of short reports during the course of 2022 and 2023 to add our collective understanding of the wellbeing impacts of the pandemic and to provide key insights on wellbeing areas or populations of focus.
Our first report Media reporting of COVID-19 and mental health and wellbeing was released on 6 October 2022 and provides a scene-setter for the rest of the series.
We released Te Huringa: Change and Transformation. Mental Health Service and Addiction Service Monitoring Report 2022 [PDF, 958 KB] on 22 March 2022.
Our report found that despite significant investment in mental health and addiction services through the 2019 Wellbeing Budget, improvements in services have not materialised as we had hoped for over this time. We commend the investment in additional, and much needed, primary and community services, but more is needed to address pressures on specialist services, particularly for young people.
We released Te Rau Tira Wellbeing Outcomes Report 2021 [PDF, 9 MB] on 8 December 2021. Our report found that most communities in Aotearoa New Zealand tend to experience good wellbeing, most of the time. The report also found that a concerningly large minority of people and communities experience persistently poor wellbeing.
We released our first report [PDF, 1.7 MB] on 28 October 2021 – a look at the first two years of the Access and Choice Programme(external link). It found the programme as a whole is on schedule, with the roll out of integrated primary mental health and addiction services proceeding as planned. However, the rollout of Kaupapa Māori, Pacific, and Youth services is behind what was intended by now, and it is critically important these areas are progressed.
As part of our broader wellbeing role, we have taken on the monitoring and advocacy function for mental health and addiction services from the former Mental Health Commissioner at the Office of the Health and Disability Commissioner(external link) (HDC).
HDC acts as an independent watchdog for people’s rights when using health and disability services and continues to consider and assess people’s complaints relating to mental health and addiction services.
Te Hiringa Mahara does not handle complaints about individual or whānau experiences of using mental health and / or addiction services. These complaints are managed by the Office of the Health and Disability Commissioner (HDC).
People who have concerns about the care they or others have experienced at a mental health or addiction service should contact the Advocacy Service(external link) or make a complaint to the HDC(external link).