James [not his real name] has been in the Australian Defence Force for 23 years. In 2002, he submitted his first claim with DVA after breaking his back in an air accident. He explains: ‘There was a lot of backwards and forwards between myself, medical staff and DVA and it felt as if the onus and burden of proof was on me’.
It took almost four years for James to receive an outcome, in what he describes as ‘a long and drawn-out process, mostly because it was all done via paper’.
However, in July this year, James was pleasantly surprised when he used MyService for the first time. ‘When I logged into my myGov account, it prompted me to link my account with MyService,’ he says. ‘Then, while I was downloading my group certificate for a recent shoulder injury, I received another prompt asking if I wanted to make a claim. I had a specialist note from a few days prior, so I thought I’d give it a go. I wasn’t expecting to submit a claim, but I did it on my phone in ten minutes while leaning against the kitchen bench.’
DVA is on a significant program of transformation to better meet the needs of veterans and their families. One key element is the introduction of MyService, which allows easy online access with DVA. Through MyService, veterans and their families can easily lodge their claims online, access veteran recognition, obtain a digital copy of their Veteran Card, view accepted conditions and update their personal details.
MyService has simplified the claims process for a number of commonly claimed conditions, reducing paper-based forms containing 40+ questions to only three to seven questions online.
‘DVA has had an evolution, and has come up with a very mature and member-guided approach,’ says James. ‘The process used to override the individual; now the process is so easy the individual has control again.’
DVA continues to improve MyService, and will continue to enhance and expand the services available for veterans and their families. For more information, visit the ‘Transformation and MyService – backgrounder’ page.