$4.5 million in Federal Funding for endED Butterfly House

Construction on Australia’s first residential treatment facility for eating disorders will now be able to begin, while treatment at the facility for those who cannot afford it will be supported for the next four years following $4.5 million in Federal funding to be announced in this evening’s Budget.

Federal Member for Fisher Andrew Wallace said that the funding for endED Butterfly House was part of the Liberal National Government’s $70 million Budget package for eating disorder treatment.

“There are around a million sufferers of eating disorders all over Australia, while Anorexia Nervosa has the highest mortality rate of any mental illness. Mark Forbes and his family have taken it upon themselves to help the sufferers of these insidious diseases and I am proud to be part of a Liberal National Government that is lending a hand.” Mr Wallace said.

“Last year I announced $1.5 million in funding toward the construction of endED Butterfly House, while Mark has been doing a great job gathering support from local business people, engineers, architects and builders. This additional $4.5 million today will ensure not only that construction can be completed, but that best practice in-patient treatment will be available for vulnerable people who could not otherwise afford it.”      

The bulk of the Federal Government funding will go toward Commonwealth support for specialist in-patient care for referred public patients at the facility over the next four years. 

Speaking on a visit to Parliament House in Canberra, endED co-founder Mark Forbes said that today’s announcement means that Australia will be leading the world in facilities for the treatment of eating disorders. 

“This announcement creates an amazing way forward for eating disorder sufferers and their families on the Sunshine Coast and throughout Australia.” Mr Forbes said.

“This announcement today really secures the construction of this facility. I’m busting to get in a plane back to the Sunshine Coast so I can grab a shovel and get this thing going. I can’t thank the Federal Government, Greg Hunt and Andrew Wallace enough. It’s absolutely astounding.”

This announcement builds on the historic $110 million investment to introduce new Medicare Benefits Schedule items for eating disorders, announced in December 2018.

This will allow people with anorexia nervosa and other severe psychological eating disorders to be able to access a Medicare rebate of up to 40 psychological and 20 dietetic services per year, depending on their needs. In addition to the provision of new Medicare services, the Liberal National Government has funded a national helpline, EDHope; provided $3.2 million for a trial of coordinated care on the Sunshine Coast; committed $1.5 million for the establishment of EndED Butterfly House in the Mooloolah Valley; provided $4 million for InsideOut Institute to translate evidence-based research into clinical practice for people with eating disorders; and prioritised eating disorder research in the $125 million “Million Minds Mission”.

“The projects that Minister Hunt and the Liberal National Government has funded will work together and support each other, making the Sunshine Coast a true national hub for the integrated and holistic treatment of eating disorders.” Mr Wallace said.

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Authorised by Andrew Wallace MP, Liberal National Party, 11/10 Lake Kawana Blvd, Bokarina, QLD, 4575