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Rehab@DVA - Volume 3, Number 5 - October 2017

Rehabilitation and Compensation Legislation for ADF Members

SRCA is now DRCAFrom 12 October 2017, the Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation (Defence-related Claims) Act 1988 (DRCA) will replace the Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988 (SRCA) for current and former members who have injuries or illnesses arising from their service prior to 1 July 2004.

The DRCA replicates the SRCA, but has been modified to cover only current and former ADF members and their dependants.  Eligibility and benefits under the DRCA will be the same as those currently available under the SRCA.  Those members and dependants with existing claims and entitlements under the SRCA will now be automatically covered by the DRCA. 

The commencement of the new Act will not alter the eligibility and benefits currently available under the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004 or the Veterans’ Entitlements Act 1986.The new Act will give the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs responsibility for all rehabilitation and compensation schemes that cover current and former ADF members and will recognise the unique nature of military service. 

Further information on the DRCA, and on making a claim for rehabilitation and/or compensation due to a service related injury or illness, can be found at the DVA website.

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National Rehabilitation Provider Session

The DVA National Rehabilitation Provider Information Session held on Friday, 15 September was well attended with over 160 consultants and DVA staff registering for the session. By holding regular Information Sessions, we aim to ensure that providers across Australia are updated on current and upcoming DVA policies and initiatives and create a collaborative forum where we can hear from and help you.

Providers attended several DVA locations throughout Australia in Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Darwin, Hobart, Melbourne, Perth, Sydney and Townsville. The session focused on the new Rehabilitation Budget Initiatives recently announced by the Department and DVA Rehabilitation staff completed a successful Pigeonhole Live trial.

Pigeonhole logoYour Questions Matter!

Questions unlock a wealth of knowledge, trigger ideas and get the conversations going.

Pigeonhole Live is an electronic tool being trialled by DVA Rehabilitation staff in order to improve engagement and connectivity between DVA staff and providers.  Questions were posted via the online Q&A page and audience members were also able to vote on these questions.  This enabled DVA Rehabilitation staff to identify the most popular questions and or topics to discuss into the future. 

Your questions and comments have already assisted us to refine our policies and the rehabilitation program.

Outcomes of Pigeonhole Live trial

1  hour gace to face contact, 23 questions, 62 votes on questions

Community Webinar – Exercise and Wellbeing

Veterans and Veterans Families Counselling Services (VVCS) will be hosting its third community webinar on Wednesday 1 November, covering the topic of Exercise and Wellbeing. The webinar will take the form of a panel discussion hosted by Dr Mark Creamer, featuring Dr Sam Hay, a general practitioner specialising in sports medicine and an ex-Army trained combat officer, as well as Mr Adrian Talbot, an Australian veteran who won two gold medals at the 2014 Invictus Games in London and will be representing Australia again at the 2018 Invictus Games in Sydney. 

The webinar will explore the ways that physical activity and exercise (or lack of it) affect our mental wellbeing, as well as provide tips and ideas for how to start getting some of these benefits into everyday life.

This will be a great resource for any of your clients struggling with transition from the ADF and rehabilitation.

The webinar is open to members of the DVA community including serving/ex-serving personnel and their families, as well as mental health providers nationally. A video of the webinar will be produced and uploaded to VVCS’ social media sites.

Webinar 1 November 12pm - 1pm

Webinar details
Date: Wednesday 1 November 2017
Time: 12:00pm - NSW,Vic,Tas & ACT
  11:30am - SA
  11:00am - Qld
  10:30am - NT
  9:00am - WA
Duration: 60 minutes

If you register for the webinar and are unable to view it on the day, a link will be sent to you once the webinar is available to view.

Register here.

To watch the previous community webinars, login or register at the following locations:

DVA Clients over the Christmas periodA man pushing a young girl on a swing. Trees are in the background

  • We need to ensure that clients’ rehabilitation plans don’t cease over Christmas, as this may have an effect on their incapacity payments. If a client’s ongoing rehabilitation plan needs to be extended past November 2017, please ensure that the end date for the plan amendment is either before 1 December 2017 or in late January 2018. DVA has a shutdown period between Christmas and New Year and during this period staff numbers may be lower than usual.  Ensuring that the plan amendment end date is well after the Christmas break will avoid the risk that the client’s incapacity payments cease if their plan ends during the shutdown period. This will help to ensure that clients continue to receive their incapacity payments over this period.
  • Avoid giving out difficult news.
    Christmas can be a stressful and hard time for some people so we do not want to add to it. Where possible avoid giving out difficult news to clients during the month of December and through to late January. Therefore if you currently have a client who is not participating in their rehabilitation plan, it is recommended that you consider discussing this with the DVA Rehabilitation Co‑ordinator as early as possible to avoid a potentially difficult conversation during the Christmas period.
  • Discuss work arrangements over Christmas.  If you have a client on a Work Trial or is likely to start employment over the Christmas period, their incapacity payments may be affected. Please consider this early by having a discussion with the client or employer in order to make any necessary arrangements with the DVA Rehabilitation Co-ordinator. Should the client’s employer shut down over Christmas their hours will be reduced and this could affect their incapacity payments. Please also consider that due to limited resourcing during the DVA shutdown period delays with processing Work Trial Diaries for incapacity payments may occur.  

Please note that the DVA shutdown period is expected to be from 23 December 2017 to 2 January 2018.  

Administrative Reminders

  • Make sure you are using the correct Transaction Reference Number (TRN) for your client’s paperwork. This avoids confusion and helps us to make the correct payment faster to you.
  • Upload your reports into the Provider Upload Page rather than email them to Rehab Coordinators. This ensures that the reports are filed immediately with the client’s information in the system.
  • Upload reports as a whole PDF document, not page by page.
  • Upload documents individually and name them accordingly. For example, if you have a work trial diary, invoice and study results for the same client, name and upload the documents individually. Otherwise, if a particular document is needed, it is very difficult to find in the system.
  • If context is needed to a report you are submitting, you can upload a cover note with the report, rather than emailing through separately.
  • Keep a note of when your client rehabilitation plans and progress notes are due. This will avoid you receiving an email from us chasing up the reports.

A man sitting at a desk golding a telephone and a piece of paper. A computer screen and bookshelves are in the background

If you have a topic that you would like to hear more about, contact us at rehab@dva.gov.au

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