9 December 2015

Welcome to HealthWest’s fortnightly newsletter. Read on for the latest in health news, resources, events and more!

News at HealthWest
Health Literacy and Community Partnership
Service Integration
Aboriginal Health
For Your Diary

News at HealthWest

Staff changes at HealthWest

Lyn Dundon finished at HealthWest last week following the conclusion of Phase 1 of the Harm from Gambling Project. Lyn’s project saw HealthWest partner with six ethno-specific organisations seeking to reduce harm from gambling in their communities.

Denise Jones has been mapping service pathways into primary care for Aboriginal people leaving prison and on court orders as part of the Koolin Balit regional work. This project will continue with our member organisations in 2016.

Agnieska Kleparska will also be leaving us having completed a six month contract as the Acting Integration & Evaluation Coordinator. Tanya Sofra returns to HealthWest on the 4th January 2016.

A big thank you to Lyn, Denise and Agnieszka for their commitment to the work of HealthWest and best wishes to all three.


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Health Literacy and Community Partnership

Braybrook on Board Community Leadership Program

Are you passionate about health in Braybrook? Do you want to take a lead role in making change? Applications are now open for the 2016 community leadership program, Braybrook on Board.

The program will tap into community skills and interests, and work with participants by assisting them to emerge as community leaders and advocates. It is run by Maribyrnong Council and will be delivered by Victoria University.

Classes will run on Monday evenings from 15 Feb – 15 June 2016 and participation is free.

More info: visit the Maribyrnong City Council website or contact Julie Brock on 9688 0134 or julie.brock@maribyrnong.vic.gov.au.


Article: Doctors’ use of computers during appointments leaves patients less satisfied

Doctors who entered data into computerised health records during patients’ appointments did less positive communicating, and patients rated their care excellent less often, in a recent study.

Technology in the exam room is neither good nor bad inherently, but doctors can use specific techniques to help patients become comfortable with it.

Read the full Reuters Health article.


Guide to Producing Health Information for Children and Young People

Patient Information Forum (UK) has developed a resource to help people communicate with children and young people about their health. The guide focuses on the practical aspects of creating good health information, including involving children, choosing the right format, writing for children and tackling sensitive issues.

Read more about the guide here or can download the summary Guide-at-a-Glance for free.


Health Voices: Journal of the Consumers Health Forum of Australia

This issue focuses on prevention and the need for increased investment in prevention work.

Read the issues on the Consumers Health Forum website


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Service Integration

Rollout of the National Disability Insurance Scheme in Victoria

Information about transition arrangements, including fact sheets for people with disability, their families and carers, and community sector organisations, is available on DHHS website.


Victoria’s 10 year mental health plan

The Minister for Mental Health, Martin Foley launched Victoria’s 10 year mental health plan.

The plan will guide investment and drive better mental health outcomes for Victorians, bringing together the ideas and insights you shared with us through the online consultation and forums.

It delivers long-term vision for the next decade and outlines 15 outcomes to guide efforts, including:

  • better mental health and wellbeing
  • reducing the prevalence of mental illness
  • reducing the suicide rates
  • better access to high-quality mental health services
  • more choice about treatment, rehabilitation and support

The plan sets out how the Victorian Government will continue to consult and work collaboratively with stakeholders to achieve improvements over the next decade.

As a first step, the Minister for Mental Health will set up an expert taskforce with four standing reference groups: lived experience leadership, workforce, innovation and Aboriginal social and emotional wellbeing.

More info: Download the plan here.


Review of mental health services

The Australian Government has released its response to the Review of Mental Health Programmes and Services. The Government has announced that Primary Health Networks (PHNs) will take on a much larger role in the commissioning of mental health services, with these changes commencing from the new financial year.  PHNs will be provided with a flexible funding pool to commission services for their local areas.  The flexible pool will be specifically for mental health and suicide prevention, and quarantined from other PHN funding.

From 2018, PHNs will commission all regionally delivered Commonwealth funded primary mental health and suicide services. The flexible funding pool will support provision of services within a stepped care model where consumers will benefit from better targeted and integrated services.

More info: download the document here.


Super Pharmacies Initiative

The Victorian Government has committed $28.7 million to introduce 24/7 pharmacies where nurses will be available every day between the hours of 6pm and 10pm to provide assessment, support and treatment for minor ailments.

Many pharmacies operating at a local community level play a key role as a trusted source of health information and advice. They have significant experience and depth of knowledge in relation to the availability of resources and the specific healthcare needs of their community.
Under the Victorian Government Super Pharmacies Initiative the pharmacist will continue to provide high-quality lifestyle, medicines and minor illness advice in their local community. The addition of a nurse-led clinic (operated by an experienced nursing service) will offer convenient access to a range of additional treatments, including immunisations for influenza and whooping cough.

The formal tender process for the first five pharmacies and nursing services is now open and closes on 21 January 2016. Please visit the Tenders Vic website to access the tender documentation.

More info: If you have any questions please email pharmacy@dhhs.vic.gov.au or call 03 9096 1455. For more information, including frequently asked questions please click here.


Daisy – connecting women to family violence services

Daisy is an app that connects women around Australia to services. Daisy can link you up with a service phone number, be used to search the internet for more information and let you know what to expect when contacting a service. Family members and friends can also use Daisy to gather information and support a loved one’s decision making.

More info: visit the 1800 Respect website.


Lifeline Service Finder

The Lifeline Service Finder is a tool available for people to search for low or no cost support services Australia-wide. The search can be conducted using either a keyword or category, and users are provided with a description, contact details and other useful information.

Lifeline Australia is a national charity providing all Australians experiencing a personal crisis with access to 24 hour crisis support and suicide prevention services. Lifeline Australia’s chief executive officer Pete Shmigel said that both service providers and the broader community will benefit from the free Lifeline Service Finder app, which puts the nearest available help at the tips of our fingers.

More info: read the article here.


E-Learning – Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex (LGBTI) Aged Care Training

This free online learning resource provides an introduction into LGBTI ageing needs and inclusive practice for the Aged Care Sector.

More info: click here.


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What are the key ingredients of liveable cities?

Cities and environments are a strong contributor to public health.  Several attributes need to be included to produce a health promoting environment, which include:

  • Residents feeling safe, socially connected and included
  • Environmental sustainability
  • Access to affordable and diverse housing options linked via public transport, walking and cycling infrastructure to employment, education, local shops, public open space and parks, health and community services, leisure and culture.

Liveability indicators linked to urban, transport and infrastructure planning policy are currently being developed.

More info: Read the article here.


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Aboriginal Health

Aboriginal Governance and Leadership in the Western Metro Aboriginal Community

West Metropolitan Aboriginal Advisory Group have been working on a governance and leadership project this year and want you to come along to have your say. The workshops are facilitated by Karen Milward.

When: Dec 10 5.30 – 8pm (dinner provided)
Location: Melton Community Hall, 238 High Street, Melton

When: Dec 14 5.30 – 8pm (dinner provided)
Location: Wyndham City Council, 45 Princes Hwy, Werribee – Conference Room C & D

When: Dec 16 5.30 – 8pm (dinner provided)
Location: Albion Community Centre, 61A Selwyn St, Albion – Main Hall Room

When: Dec 17 (Young people) 5.30 – 8pm (dinner provided)
Location: Footscray Community Arts Centre, 45 Moreland St, Footscray – Jack Kennedy Meeting Room

Footscray workshop is a youth specific consultation to explore the ideas around leadership and governance in to the future.

Child care and transportation is available for individuals who would like to come but need some support to get there. If you or a group of people would like to attend, but need support in getting there please contact either Mark (9275 7041) or Jasmina (9229 4179).


Check Today, See Tomorrow: Indigenous Eye Health Resources

This resource kit has been developed by the Indigenous Eye Health Unit at the University of Melbourne to increase awareness about diabetes eye care and the need for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with diabetes to have a yearly eye check to help prevent vision loss and blindness

Click here for the resource kit.


Djerriwarrh Health Service Aboriginal Community Health Series – Centrelink

Indigenous Centrelink staff will assist with all Centrelink questions.

Where: Melton City Council Hall, 232 High St Melton
When: Friday 11th December 2015, 9.45 am to 1.30pm

Lunch provided.

For more information contact Damien or Prabha 8746 1100


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For Your Diary

Western Region

Wominjeka Festival

Presenting a rich and diverse program of art, music, performance and activities that deeply reflects Indigenous culture in Melbourne’s west, and Australia.

When: 15 – 17 January, 2016

Where: Footscray Community Arts Centre

More info: For the full program and to book tickets, click here.

Women’s Health West – Caught Between Two Cultures Project

The Caught Between Two Cultures project supports young African women aged between 16 – 15 to build their knowledge, skills and confidence in sexual and reproductive health, leadership and advocacy. Women’s Health West is seeking young African women to participate in the program with the following criteria:

  • Live, work or study in Melbourne’s west
  • Want to learn about women’s sexual and reproductive health and wellbeing
  • Develop their leadership and advocacy skills

When: 10am – 3pm on Mon 11th, Tuesday 12th, Wednesday 13th, Thursday 14th, Friday 15th, Monday 18th and Tuesday 19th January, 2016.

More info: Download the flyer here, or for more details contact Shukria Alewi on 9689 9588 or Shukria@whwest.org.au.


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