Health Minister Jonathan Coleman says over a million contacts have now been made to the country's telehealth provider for advice on health issues as well as mental health and addiction support.
“The National Telehealth Service operates a number of significant health information services and this week hit a million contacts in just under 20 months, with 1,002,952 contacts this morning,” says Dr Coleman. "This includes over 600,000 contacts to Healthline, 141,000 to mental health and addiction services, 150,000 to Quitline and 43,000 for poisons advice.
"All these services are staffed by a trained, professional workforce. Telehealth services provide convenient, accurate, immediate and free health and mental health advice round the clock 7 days a week via the phone or online.
“Late last month I launched 1737, need to talk? a free four digit number people can text or call to talk with a counsellor anytime, day or night.
“The service has drawn more than a thousand contacts since its launch, and the 1 millionth contact to telehealth was a text message to 1737.
"We're seeing a lot of young people contacting the 1737 number - mostly by text. It shows the benefit of engaging with young people in the ways which work best for them."
The National Telehealth Service, launched on 1 November 2015, consolidates a range of Health-funded helplines through one clinically-supported platform including Healthline, Quitline, immunisation and poisons advice, the Depression helpline and other mental health and addiction lines.