The Royal Flying Doctor Service is set to start providing life-saving mental health care to remote parts of Australia from next year after the federal government provided an $84 million funding boost.
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull will make the pre-budget announcement in Broken Hill, NSW, on Thursday along with Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack.
The money will help the 90-year-old organisation to put more psychologists and mental health nurses on the ground in areas where there are few or no services.
"Ninety years of changing lives. Ninety years of saving lives," Mr Turnbull said, in a statement.
While people in metropolitan areas have ready access to ambulance, dental and mental health services, those in rural and remote communities rely on the unique access to the RFDS, he said.
The funding is part of a four-year, $327 million commitment.
The service, which receives one-third of its budget from the federal government, will also extend its dental outreach program beyond 2019.
Six operational areas are set to benefit from the funding package including southeast NSW, the South Australian outback and Central Australia, Western Australia, Queensland, Victoria and Tasmania.
Australian Associated Press