New research has revealed that the GPs are treating mental health issues more than any other condition in Australia.
The latest Health of a Nation report, courtesy of the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners, has shown that two in three GPs are reporting psychological problems as the most common issue being treated.
It is estimated that in a lifetime, one in five Australians will experience a mental health problem.
Other issues frequently addressed to GPs include obesity (45 per cent), diabetes (18 per cent) and aged care (12 per cent).
One hurdle identified by the research is that issues such as mental health consultations require longer appointments, which is an issue in some cases as six to 10 minutes are typically allocated for patients.
Given that the process for seeking professional help depends heavily on the GP as a gatekeeper to medicare rebates and referrals, there are calls to reinvigorate the system to ensure that patients are able to access the help they need.