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Motion: TMS to a vote

Adjourned debate on motion of Hon. T.A. Franks:

That this council—

1. Notes that—

(a) transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is an effective treatment option for some people with major depression;

(b) in 2018, the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists recommended that 'TMS should be accessible in private and public mental health services and made available in addition to the current spectrum of treatment options';

(c) in 2022, the Prescribed Psychiatric Treatment Panel, a part of the Office of the Chief Psychiatrist of SA Health, recommended that TMS be introduced into public mental health services as a first-line treatment ahead of the significantly more disruptive electroconvulsive therapy;

(d) the inclusion of TMS in the range of options available under the public health system would ensure that people have access to suitable treatments that allow them to continue living their lives; and

2. Calls on the health minister to ensure that TMS is made available to South Australians by including it in our public health system.


The Hon. T.A. FRANKS: I wish to thank all those who have made a contribution today, namely, the Hon. Reggie Martin and the Hon. Nicola Centofanti. I express my gratitude for their indication of both the Labor government's and the Liberal opposition's support of this motion. I note also the previous support in a contribution by the Hon. Sarah Game, and the attendance of SA-Best MPs, which seemed very supportive, at the briefing that we held on this issue. I think we have an outbreak of consensus to finish our day.

Since I last spoke on this matter, there has been some correspondence from the Flinders Student Psychiatry Society as well, which I would like to add to the public debate. That letter, dated 25 May and co-signed by Sam Diprose (the President), Lauren Hammond (the Vice President), and Sara Ataie Ashtiani (the Director of Education), says:

…(TMS) is used to treat Major Depressive Disorder when medications have failed. This fact alone is enough to articulate that by supporting access to TMS for public patients, you will be voting to directly improve, and save, life.

The Flinders Student Psychiatry Society aims to promote psychiatry and mental health as a career among Flinders University's Medical School. We are a student body who represent the next generation of doctors who will dedicate their careers to the preservation of life.

We ask that you provide these doctors with the tools they need to achieve this.

I note that the future generation, soon to be practising in South Australia, certainly looks forward to this parliament supporting public access to TMS in the near future. I hope that we can hear updates from the government in coming months on their progress towards that.

TMS will save lives and it will change lives. TMS is a proven option here that I am so glad all members on all sides of politics have shown an interest in supporting. I also want to thank the Premier's Advocate for Suicide Prevention—Nadia Clancy, the member for Elder in the other place—for her support of a forum that she and I co-hosted.

It is a lovely way to end the day to have support for this motion, but I certainly hope that the words today are turned into deeds tomorrow—or, if not then, in the coming weeks and months but certainly by the end of the year. With that, I commend the motion.

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