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Better support for families

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A father in uniform embraces his young daughter at the dinner table in their home.

Families of veterans can access increased support through DVA. This acknowledges their vital role in the health and rehabilitation of veterans.

The new support, which became available on 1 May 2018, includes increased access to childcare, household services and counselling for veterans and their families. It also includes additional assistance for the partners of those veterans who have died while serving during recent overseas conflicts or following their return home.

The families package began on the same day as DVA’s new interim income support measure, the Veteran Payment, which provides assistance to veterans who cannot work and are experiencing financial pressures while awaiting liability decisions on mental health (see Interim payment now available).

A new pilot program, the Coordinated Veteran Care mental health pilot, also started on 1 May. It aims to support veterans in rural and regional areas with mental health conditions that are combined with other health problems.

Veterans who have suffered a catastrophic injury will also be supported with access to household and attendant care services based on their individual needs.

The qualifying service determination has also been simplified by automating the process. This will remove the requirement for veterans to make an application for the determination.

These initiatives reflect DVA’s ongoing commitment to improving services for veterans and their families, and deliver a significant part of the Government’s response to the concerns raised in the Senate Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade References Committee report, The Constant Battle: Suicide by Veterans.

DVA is reviewing and assessing the effectiveness of current services available to veterans’ families, and conducting further research into international developments that might be adopted here.

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