Award masks hidden fears

Mr Parry said the MHPN was a broad-based program which did not cater specifically to the needs of rural psychologists.

Mr Parry said should RRAPP fail to attract the crucial funding it would be a struggle to maintain the network of rural psychologists it had created.

“One of the hopes was we would have sustainable contacts and networks that would survive beyond the life of the project and to a degree we have done that,” he said.

“We’ve formed connections and there are people in the Sydney branch of the Australian Psychology Society that are doing free supervision of country colleagues as part of this.

“If there is no co-ordinator to run it I can’t see how those things would continue... the mechanical structures would fold.”

In a statement yesterday morning, a spokesperson for the NSW Ministry of Health said “The Ministry has had informal communication with project staff and we are willing to consider a formal request from Hunter New England Health for continuation of this program”.

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