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Tuesday, 15 July 2014

SRCA On-Line Training

SRCA training is now available via the on-line training modules.
The normal nomination process is to be used for those wishing to do this training.
Once the nomination form has been received, login and password details will be advised.

Nomination forms can be downloaded using the link to the right under the Important Links heading

Monday, 7 July 2014

New VVCS Website

Media Release  VA047  (05 July)

NEW WEBSITE LINKS VETERANS TO SUPPORT WHEN THEY NEED IT
The Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Senator the Hon. Michael Ronaldson has officially launched a new dedicated website for the Veterans and Veterans Families Counselling Service (VVCS) at the South Australian RSL Congress in Adelaide today.
VVCS is a free and confidential service that offers eligible veterans counselling, group programs, and after-hours crisis support 24 hours a day.
"Tackling the mental health challenges facing veterans and their families is a key pillar of the Government’s plan for veterans’ affairs. The Government’s priority is to ensure that we have in place the mental health services and supports that are needed for veterans and their families."
"VVCS is at the frontline of mental health and wellbeing support for the Australian veteran and ex-service community. The services provided by VVCS are particularly important as they also support the families, who significantly support veterans."
The launch of a new dedicated website for VVCS builds on the Minister’s recent announcements to improve access to mental health treatment, including access to counselling and support.
From 1 July 2014, former serving members who have border protection service, served in a disaster zone either in Australia or overseas, served as a submariner, were involved in training accidents resulting in serious injury or were medically discharged can access VVCS services.
VVCS services are also available to partners and their dependent children, up to the age of 26, of these newly eligible service men and women.  Along with the partners, dependent children, aged up to 26, and parents of members killed in service-related incidents.
"The Government spends around $166 million a year on meeting the mental health needs of Veterans and their families.  The funding for treatment is demand driven, and it is not capped - if treatment is needed, it is funded."
 "This Government is determined not to repeat the mistakes of the past. This means we need to develop a strong understanding of the issues and challenges faced by veteran and defence communities including their families, and to have a robust evidence base to inform efforts to reduce stigma around mental illness and to keep improving our services." Senator Ronaldson said.
A mobile version of the new VVCS website has also been developed  to ensure that veterans and their families can access information and support details when they need to.
The new VVCS dedicated website can be accessed at: www.vvcs.gov.au

Mental Health Support for Former ADF Members and Families

Media Release VA041

STRENGTHENING ACCESS TO MENTAL HEALTH SUPPORT FOR FORMER ADF MEMBERS AND FAMILIES
Today the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Senator the Hon Michael Ronaldson, announced three major initiatives which expand existing mental health services for veterans and their families.
From today, eligible veterans will have access to treatment for alcohol and substance use disorders and be able to access treatment for certain conditions without the need to make a claim for compensation from the Australian Government.  Counselling services will also be expanded to more veterans and family members.
"Tackling the mental health challenges facing veterans and their families is a key pillar of the Government’s plan for Veterans’ Affairs.  The funding for treatment is demand driven, and it is not capped." Senator Ronaldson said.
Firstly, there will be greater access to DVA’s payment for mental health treatment, whether or not the mental health condition is related to service.
Currently, these arrangements cover diagnosed posttraumatic stress disorder, anxiety, and depression.  DVA will now also pay for treatment for diagnosed alcohol and substance use disorders, and an increased number of individuals with peacetime service only will also become eligible. 
Secondly, the Government has broadened the accessibility of counselling and support services provided by the Veterans and Veterans Families Counselling Service (VVCS) with an expansion to client eligibility.
In addition to those already eligible for support, current and former serving members who have border protection service, served in a disaster zone either in Australia or overseas, served as a submariner, were involved in training accidents resulting in serious injury or were medically discharged are now eligible for VVCS.
Access to VVCS services are also available to partners and their dependent children, up to the age of 26, of these newly eligible service men and women. Additionally, the partners, dependent children aged up to 26, and parents of members killed in service-related incidents are eligible for VVCS support.
Finally, in an effort to promote early intervention and prevention, all former serving personnel are now able to access a comprehensive health assessment from their GP. A Medicare rebate is available for this health assessment. 
"This comprehensive health assessment will help your GP to diagnose and identify early any mental or physical health conditions you may be experiencing. Your GP will then be able to treat you or refer you to other services," said Senator Ronaldson.
Over the next four years, the Department of Veterans’ Affairs will spend more than four times the amount on mental health than it will on commemorating the Anzac Centenary. That is $145 million on the Centenary programme for 2014-2018, compared with the more than an estimated $664 million to be spent on mental health services over this same period.
"With over 72,500 men and women having served this nation oversees since 1999, we must ensure that this nation does not repeat the mistakes it made post Vietnam."
If you identify a member of the veteran and ex-serving community who you think may benefit from VVCS services, please encourage them to call 1800 011 046 to discuss their eligibility and support options.

Thursday, 3 July 2014

Statements of Principles Update

At the meeting of 4 June 2014 the RMA:

Determined Statements of Principles (SoPs) for:
  • malignant neoplasm of the stomach…..…58/2014 & 59/2014
  • melioidosis……………………………..……60/2014 & 61/2014
  • lumbar spondylosis……………………..….62/2014 & 63/2014
  • thoracic spondylosis………………….……64/2014 & 65/2014
  • cervical spondylosis……….……………....66/2014 & 67/2014
  • hiatus hernia..………….…………………...68/2014 & 69/2014
These SoPs revoke the SoPs previously determined for these conditions.

Determined New SoPs for:
  • warts……………………………..………….70/2014 & 71/2014
The above determinations conclude the previously advertised investigations into:
  • malignant neoplasm of the stomach
  • melioidosis
  • lumbar spondylosis
  • thoracic spondylosis
  • cervical spondylosis
  • hiatus hernia
  • plantar warts [now known as – warts]
 The above SoPs take effect from 2 July 2014.

Determined Amendment SoPs for:
  • myeloma…..……..…………………………72/2014 & 73/2014
These Amendment SoPs concerning myeloma have effect from 13 May 2014 and are made in accordance with the direction of the Specialist Medical Review Council, Declaration No. 23. 

Download the 'Summary of Changes' regarding SoPs 58 – 73/2014       (pdf)    (Word)



Decided to advertise the following investigations:
  • trochanteric bursitis of the hip
  • migraine – restricted to (i) posttraumatic stress disorder, (ii) depressive disorder and (iii) anxiety disorder, as causal factors of migraine
The Investigation Notices for these investigations appeared in the Government Notices Gazette of 1 July 2014.