Home' Air Force News : October 27th 2011 Contents 9
October 27, 2011
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CLOSER integration of health care
provision to ADF members received
a shot in the arm with the recent in-
troduction of Department of Veterans'
Affairs (DVA) representatives at major
bases around Australia.
The DVA On Base Advisory
Service (OBAS) was launched on
October 1 and will result in the collo-
cation of DVA personnel on more than
35 bases on a full or part-time basis as
The DVA General Manager
Executive Division, MAJGEN Liz
Cosson, said the OBAS initiative was
established as part of the joint ADF/
DVA Support for Wounded, Injured or
Ill Program (SWIIP).
MAJGEN Cosson said OBAS rec-
ognised under the SWIIP initiative
that medical care for a service person
and family required a whole-of-life
approach and Defence and DVA were
connected in this.
"It recognises that military service
is unique and Australian society wants
to make sure we look after those
who make sacrifices to the nation,"
MAJGEN Cosson said.
Graham McBean reports on the closer ties between the ADF
and the Department of Veterans' Affairs to provide 'whole-of-
life' medical care to former and serving military personnel.
The internet is a gold mine of official and
credible information. Along with transition
programs such as Stepping Out, informa-
tion packages can give ADF personnel a
head start on figuring out the 'good oil'
from the 'snake oil' on good health and
where to go for further help.
Wellbeing Toolbox. A pilot website at www.
wellbeingtoolbox.net.au was developed as
an online mental-health resource allowing
users to self-assess their needs and work
through a self-management plan. It aims
to facilitate early intervention for those ex-
periencing difficulties in their post-military
life and may prevent more serious issues
New booklet. The new Mental Health and
Wellbeing after Military Service booklet
provides information and advice for veter-
ans and former serving personnel and their
families about mental health and wellbeing
following military service. The booklet is
available at www.at-ease.dva.gov.au
Stepping Out. The Veterans and Veterans
Families Counselling Service (VVCS) runs
the Stepping Out program. The free two-day
program was developed for ADF members
and their partners who have recently, or are
about to be, separated from the military.
VVCS can be contacted on 1800 011 046.
At Ease. The At Ease mental health support
internet portal is at www.at-ease.dva.gov.
au. The web portal encourages people to
recognise signs, take appropriate action
and assume more responsibility for their
own health and wellbeing.
The Right Mix. Information and materials
at www.therightmix.gov.au encourages peo-
ple to look at their social habits and make
sure they have The Right Mix with alcohol,
diet and exercise to achieve a healthier and
more enjoyable lifestyle.
It is part of the broader SWIIP
strategy to connect with people
early and avoid them having to work
through what are complex processes
to get the help they need after they
have separated from the ADF.
MAJGEN Cosson said many cur-
rent ADF members didn't see them-
selves as veterans while they were
Under the OBAS model, per-
sonnel will be referred by medical
staff or be able to make their own
appointment with the DVA repre-
sentatives collocated at Regional
MAJGEN Cosson said the aim
was to educate ADF members that
they could still be clients of DVA and
serving members of the ADF.
"We are encouraging them to make
the connection early and when they
need us in the longer term they have
already established that an injury or
illness is service related."
The OBAS is one of a range of
new initiatives to support ADF mem-
bers and their families through the
Photo: LACW Nicci Freeman
SUPPORT IS OUT THERE
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