Mental health advocates are again demanding a national review into services they say are at "crisis point" following a grisly rampage that cost four lives last week.

Mental Health outpatient Ross Bremner stabbed his mother, Clare, to death and left his father, Kevin, fighting for his life at their Otorohanga home last Tuesday.

On Friday, Bremner's body was found alongside those of elderly couple Mona Tuwhangai and Maurice O'Donnell at their Te Kuiti farmhouse.

The tragedy has sparked an independent inquiry by the Waikato DHB into its Henry Bennett Centre, following a Ministry of Health report released in April that found a raft of problem with the DHB's mental health services.


Bremner is the third of the centre's patients to have died high-profile deaths while under its care in recent months.

The Green Party labelled the Ministry's report "damning" and today Health Spokeswoman Julie Anne Genter again called for a national inquiry into New Zealand's mental health services.

"We keep having these recurring events which are undoubtedly the result of a systematic problem but the Government wants to look at them all individually as individual problems, as failures of particular care centres rather than the whole system and how that's failing."

Psychotherapist Kyle MacDonald is behind the People's Review of the Mental Health System, which launched today to coincide with World Mental Health Day and New Zealand's Mental Health Awareness Week.

MacDonald said 300 submissions received for the project showed the country's mental health services "are in crisis".

"One of the themes coming through is that families have frequently found that they have been calling for help or support for their family members at a high-risk time and for some reason those calls aren't being heeded."

There have been reports that Bremner's family had been seeking help for him in the days before the deaths.

"The Ministry needs to step in and do something, we would love to see the Minister in the media and explaining to the public what his Government will do for these services."


New Zealand's Director of Mental Health, Dr John Crawshaw, said a review would not be considered until the DHB, police and Coroner had all completed separate investigations.

"Mental health services in New Zealand do a valuable and challenging job. "

He said he was satisfied all the recommendations of the April report were being implemented and that annual reports showed the sector's "steady improvements".

Health Minister Jonathon Coleman said there was no need for a national inquiry.

"Mental health cases are often complex and unique. The Ministry of Health is currently engaging with sector experts to identify where further support is needed."

Memorial held for stabbing victims


Bonded by grief and dressed in black, more than 100 mourners gathered at the property of Clare and Keith Bremner today to pay their respects to the double stabbing victims.

A white marquee was set up for today's service and those who attended were welcomed onto the Cruden Ave property with a waiata. Bunches of flowers were left at the letterbox and mourners clutched posies of flowers.

A relative of Claire's who attended, but did not want to be named, said it was a lovely service.

Among the speakers were ministers, Otorohanga Mayor Max Baxter, local police officer Andy Collins, head detective Ross Patterson and two of Claire's work colleagues at the early education centre where she had worked until last year.

Her workmates told the 200 attendees they had met Claire for lunch in Whatawhata the day she was killed.

The relative said the family of Mona Tuwhangi who was killed by Ross Bremner also attended and said they held no grudges and sent the Bremner family all their aroha.


The family was then heading to the marae in Taumarunui for the tangi.

"It wasn't a sad thing. It was just so nice. The whole community there."

A kowhai tree which had been donated by Mitre 10 was planted in the Bremner's garden as everyone watched.