Allied health treatment cycle - Overview

Last updated: 
17 January 2020

From 1 October 2019, referrals for DVA clients to allied health services will be valid for up to 12 sessions or a year, whichever ends first.


Visit one of the following pages for further information about the treatment cycle and how it affects you:

This new ‘treatment cycle’ has been introduced to promote quality clinical care for veterans so they have the best possible prospects for living a healthy life. The treatment cycle places the client at the centre of care and the general practitioner (GP) as the care coordinator. It provides a framework for better coordination and communication between GPs, allied health providers and clients. These arrangements ensure health care and allied health treatment is the most appropriate for the client’s needs.

Do these changes affect me?

These changes will affect you if you are an allied health provider or receive any of the following services:

  • chiropractic
  • clinical psychology
  • diabetes education
  • dietetics
  • exercise physiology
  • neuropsychology
  • occupational therapy
  • mental health occupational therapy
  • orthotic services
  • osteopathy
  • physiotherapy
  • podiatry
  • psychology
  • social work
  • mental health social work
  • speech pathology

Dental and optical services are not affected as they do not require a referral. Referrals to specialist doctors (including surgeons and psychiatrists) remain unchanged.

At Risk Client Framework

DVA recognises that some clients may benefit from a more tailored referral and care arrangement specific to their needs outside of the Treatment Cycle arrangements. DVA has developed The At Risk Client Framework (the Framework) for GPs to use to decide whether a client needs a tailored allied health referral arrangement for up to 12 months to achieve better quality of care.

The At Risk Client Assessment Form must be completed by a GP and include a clinical justification that explains how the treatment cycle would detrimentally impact upon the client’s health, wellbeing, or treatment; and/or place upon them an unreasonable burden or imposition.

The form must be submitted to treatment.cycle [at] by the GP as a record of the referral arrangement. This is for record keeping and monitoring purposes only, DVA does not need to approve the arrangement. Forms should not be submitted to DVA by allied health providers or clients.

More information about the At Risk Client Framework can be found at: