Relationship with Defence

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The Department of Veterans' Affairs (DVA) and the Department of Defence (Defence) are committed to delivering the best possible outcomes to all our members and their eligible families.

DVA has a strong relationship with Defence and this has been formalised through a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) (PDF 1.3MB). The purpose of the MoU is to set out the governing principles and provisions, by which DVA and Defence will work cooperatively to deliver care and support.

In establishing the MoU, DVA and Defence acknowledge that:

  • Defence has the lead in caring for, and supporting, serving members
  • DVA has the lead in caring for, and supporting, war widow(er)s, dependants and wounded, injured or ill ex-service members
  • DVA is responsible for providing compensation and other support to eligible members while they are still serving.

There has been a significant improvement in information sharing and cooperation between the two departments. This has enabled DVA to connect better with members who might benefit from services and support. Transitioning members now receive a letter and information brochure from DVA.

Defence and DVA are working together to improve service delivery and claims processing through an Early Engagement Model that will allow DVA to establish a relationship with members from the time they join the ADF. The departments are also working to establish a flow of basic information to DVA to support this model.

Early engagement will allow DVA to make contact at appropriate times during an ADF member's career. This will promote early intervention and ensure that they are fully aware of the care, support and services available to them.

It will also greatly assist ADF members if they need to lodge a claim with DVA in the future.

While DVA already receives details of members who are involved in a serious incident or are medically separating from the ADF, the first phase of the Early Engagement Model will use technology to expand and streamline the flow of information. A second phase will allow DVA to be more client-focused and adept in engaging ADF members through the use of new technology.

Defence/DVA Executive Committee

Defence/ DVA Executive Committee (DDEC) is the principal governing body that sets the joint strategic direction for the delivery of care and support.

The DDEC is responsible for:

  • ensuring that the delivery of the care and support to eligible persons remains effective and coordinated, is delivered in the most appropriate and respectful manner, and takes into account emerging issues resulting from contemporary operations
  • ensuring a collaborative approach to the engagement with the ex-service community on issues jointly impacting Defence and DVA
  • benchmarking the care and Support Continuum against best practice.

Membership of the DDEC comprises the:

  • Secretary of the Department of Defence (Co-chair)
  • Chief of the Defence Force
  • Secretary of the Department of Veterans' Affairs (Co-Chair)
  • Chief Operating Officer, Department of Veterans' Affairs
  • Deputy Secretary, Defence People Group

The DDEC meets once per calendar year.

Meeting summaries for DDEC

Defence/DVA Links Steering Committee

The Defence/DVA Links Steering Committee (DLSC) is responsible for implementing the strategic direction set by the DDEC and for monitoring both the progress of the MoU and the performance of the Support Continuum.

Membership of the DLSC comprises the following:

  • Deputy Secretary, Veterans and Families Services, Department of Veterans’ Affairs (Co-chair)
  • Deputy Secretary, Defence People Group, Department of Defence (Co-chair)
  • Deputy President, Repatriation Commission, Department of Veterans’ Affairs
  • Repatriation Commissioner, Department of Veterans’ Affairs
  • Head, People Capability, Department of Defence
  • Commander, Joint Health Command, Department of Defence
  • Defence Engagement Commissioner, Department of Veterans’ Affairs
  • Chief Health Officer, Department of Veterans’ Affairs.

Meeting summaries for DLSC












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