DVA e-News Issue - 2 - 2013
In this issue:
Share your Anzac Spirit
As dawn breaks on 25 April, Australians will join together at Anzac Day commemorations across the country and overseas.
Anzac Day has become more than a tradition for Australians – it’s a part of our national identity, one that unites Australians every year.
We want to know what you do to share in the spirit of Anzac Day.
Whether it be at your local school, cenotaph, RSL club or at a service overseas… share your Anzac Day pictures and accompanying stories and experiences with us and our friends on the DVA Facebook page.
Your contribution might inspire others to take part in this important once-a-year commemoration.
At Ease – military mental health portal
The new At Ease website is a one-stop online portal for serving and ex-serving ADF personnel experiencing mental health issues, and for the family members and health providers supporting them.
The portal offers easy to understand pathways to achieving mental fitness and resilience, new self-help tools, access to professional support, details of treatment options for a range of mental health issues, advice on healthy drinking and clinical information for GPs and mental health professionals.
Veteran support goes mobile
Two smart phone apps are now available for the veteran and Defence communities.
PTSD Coach Australia helps current and former Defence members identify the signs of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and encourages them to seek help.
It provides information about self assessment and professional care, and tools to manage the stresses of daily life with PTSD.
ON TRACK with The Right Mix helps users to track their drinking habits, and to consider the impact of drinking on their lifestyle, health and budget.
It was designed for veteran and Defence communities, but it can be used by anyone.
Both apps are free and available from the Apple App Store, Google Play, www.at-ease.dva.gov.au and www.therightmix.gov.au
Journey along the Western Front
In partnership with French and Belgian authorities, DVA is developing a commemorative trail highlighting 12 sites along the Western Front.
Each site helps visitors to understand and appreciate the Australian experience of war.
Visit www.ww1westernfront.gov.au to find out more.
Clean Energy Supplement
Ongoing payments under the Household Assistance Package have commenced for DVA pension and income support supplement recipients.
The first full payment of fortnightly Clean Energy Supplement will be paid to these recipients on 18 April 2013.
The Clean Energy Supplement payments will commence for MRCA permanent impairment payment recipients from July 2013, and January 2014 for fortnightly education allowance recipients.
Visit the Household Assistance Package page on the DVA website for information on eligible payments, payment amounts and other assistance available under the Package.
vetAWARE – you ask, we deliver!
Following the release of the vetAWARE online professional development course for community nurses, DVA was inundated with requests from other service providers wanting to also access the course.
In response, vetAWARE is available for all health professionals as well as for representatives of ex-service organisations who want to learn more about the common mental health challenges faced by veterans and what help is available.
To access the vetAWARE online training program, visit the Service Providers page of the DVA website.
Review of Military Compensation Arrangements
The Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Warren Snowdon, recently introduced a Bill to Parliament to implement recommendations of the Review of Military Compensation Arrangements.
The changes proposed include:
- former Defence members with conditions accepted under the Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988, and who need ongoing treatment, to have access to that treatment with a Repatriation Health Card (White Card),
- increased rate of compensation payable for dependent children under the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004, and
- partners of deceased members to have more choice about how they receive their compensation.
A parliamentary inquiry into the Bill is being conducted. More information is on the Parliament of Australia website, as are details of the progress of the Bill.
For more information about the Report and its implementation visit the DVA website.
Australia’s eHealth record system is here
You can now register for a personally controlled electronic health (eHealth) record.
The eHealth record is a quick and easy way for you, your doctor and your other healthcare professionals to manage and share information about your health and medical treatment.
Veterans, war widows and widowers with chronic health conditions will particularly benefit from having an eHealth record.
Talk to your doctor about what an eHealth record would mean for you. They may be able to register you for an eHealth record, or call 1800 723 471, go to a Medicare Service Centre, or visit www.ehealth.gov.au for an application form and for more information.
Reaching out on Anzac Day
Anzac Day can be a time of mixed emotions for some veterans and their families.
It’s an important time of remembrance and respect, and an opportunity to spend time with mates and loved ones. But it can also be a time of anxiety and painful feelings.
If you’re feeling distressed around Anzac Day, reach out for a helping hand from a family member, mate or from the Veterans and Veterans Counselling Service (VVCS).
VVCS is a free, confidential, counselling service. VVCS is available for all Australian veterans, peacekeepers, eligible members of the Defence Force community and their families, along with F-111 fuel tank maintenance workers, their partners and immediate family members.
Visit the VVCS website www.dva.gov.au/vvcs or call 1800 011 046* 24 hours a day across Australia.
* Free local call. Calls from pay phones and some mobiles may incur charges.
Men’s Health Peer Education
Men’s Health Peer Education (MHPE) raises awareness of men’s health issues by encouraging members of the veteran and ex-service communities to share the responsibility for managing their own health and wellbeing.
Visit the MHPE website to read the March 2013 issue of the MHPE magazine. This edition is Making Change Happen. Articles include: Keeping your resolution, Understanding changes in veterans and The Bloke's Guide to Shaping Up.
Online Services Continue to Grow
More than 10,000 DVA clients are now using DVA’s ‘MyAccount’ online service.
In May 2013 new online services will be added. DVA clients will be able to:
- Notify of overseas travel
- View details of their income and assets
- Clients covered by the Safety Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988 can view their accepted medical conditions and payments
Also, members of the public will be able to search the Office of Australian War Graves database for an official commemoration, and they will be able to request permission to use a service badge on a headstone or other commemoration in a cemetery.
For more information visit the DVA website. or the MyAccount website
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Media releases are available on the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs website.
Veterans and Veterans Families Counselling Service
A free and confidential counselling service for Australian veterans, peacekeepers and their families. For more information on VVCS services and eligibility, please visit the VVCS website [c1] or phone 1800 011 046.
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