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Health Consumers' Council

News and events to help you stay on top of what's happening in health
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Strategy for 2021-23

The Health Consumers' Council's purpose is to increase the capacity of all people to influence the future direction of health care and to make informed choices. In these complex and rapidly changing times, we have developed a Strategy for just two years, from 2021-2023. This was endorsed at our June 2021 Management Committee meeting. You can click on the image below to read it.

Pip Brennan, Executive Director

Building a movement

For the last three years, we’ve been working with the WA Department of Health and the WA Primary Health Alliance to create opportunities for consumers and community members to be involved in developing and implementing plans to improve health services and outcomes in the area of overweight and obesity.

Last week we had an opportunity to share some of the insights people have shared with us, with an audience of clinicians, researchers and policy makers at the ANZ Obesity Society conference.

At that event there were strong calls for a more prominent role for people with lived experience as being critical to driving real change in this area.

We know that some people can be reluctant to come forward and speak up because of concerns about stigma and judgement - and we provide a range of ways for people to be involved.

One way is to sign up to our email list and join over 300 other people who want to make change happen. You can sign up here

We also have a private moderated Facebook group - Partners in Change: Healthy Life for Longer

We need to build a movement and we know that consumer and community voices have a key role to play - so come join us!

Clare Mullen, Deputy Director

In this email:

Want to get involved?

Your voice and your experiences are important and can help shape what health service in WA looks like. Want to get involved?


The Australian Government is rolling out the COVID-19 vaccine free for everyone in Australia, including all Australian citizens, permanent residents, and temporary visa holders.

It is recommended that all adults get the COVID-19 vaccine when they are eligible. The latest news and information on COVID-19 vaccines in Australia is available here.

Vaccine information in multiple language is available here.

Fireside Chat – Covid-19 vaccines

Join us for a Q&A event with the co-chair of Australia’s peak immunisation advisory group to Government.

Dr Chris Blyth, from the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation, will be answering your questions about Covid vaccines in Australia.

This is your opportunity to hear from a trusted source as he answers questions on vaccination and Australia’s vaccination strategy, including side effects, age cut offs, and boosters.

As a clinical academic, Dr Blyth will be able to address common community misconceptions and tackle the hard questions, such as “Pfizer vs Astra Zeneca, how do they compare?” and “why do I need a vaccination now if we have little/no community transmission?”.

You can submit a question along with your registration.

When: Thursday 5 August, 12:30-1:15pm
Where: Online, via Zoom
Register at:

Diversity Dialogues – 29 July

In 2021 the Diversity Dialogues panel discussions will focus on the topic of sexual health in culturally and linguistically diverse (CaLD) communities.

The theme for the next session is Sexually Transmitted Diseases and Migrant Communities – focusing on help seeking barriers and enablers around diagnosis and treatment of sexually transmitted diseases, including blood borne viruses, in culturally and linguistically diverse (particularly migrant) populations.

We are excited to hear from the highly regarded panellists:

  • Dr Dr Belinda Wozencroft, GP with special interests in Refugee Health and Sexual Health
  • Tyler Morgan , Health Education, WA AIDS Council
  • Kanwal Saleem, Community Engagement and Projects Officer at the Multicultural Health and Support Service (MHSS), a program of the Centre for Culture, Ethnicity and Health (in Victoria) which runs peer education program for diverse communities
  • Corie Gray, Coordinator for the CoPAHM and PhD candidate, designing an intervention to increase HIV testing uptake with women from Indonesia at-risk of HIV
  • Popy Yuniar, PhD student and a Community Researcher on the Srikandi project, a participatory action research project with women from Indonesia to increase HIV testing

When: Thursday 29 July, 10am
Where: Online, via Zoom
Who can attend: Health and community service providers (clinical and non-clinical) as well as consumer representatives who would like knowledge of those close to the issue to enhance the patient experience and assist in the work they undertake

We're joining The Great Registration Race for DonateLife Week

We’re excited to announce we have received a 2021 Community Awareness Grant from the Organ and Tissue Authority to undertake a project aimed at empowering Western Australians to increase their knowledge of the benefits of organ and tissue donation and transplantation, to encourage family discussion and know each other’s donation decisions, and to register online on the Australian Organ Donor Register.

We’re getting stuck into planning, with a particular focus on increasing awareness and encouraging conversation among Aboriginal people and people from Culturally and Linguistically Diverse backgrounds.

Right now in Australia, there are about 13 million people eligible to register as organ and tissue donors, but they haven’t signed up. Are you one of them?

The HCC team is proudly taking part in The Great Registration Race for DonateLife Week from 25 July – 1 August, to help turn this around. We’re encouraging everyone to check if you’re registered at

Did you know,  around
❌1357 Australians are currently on the waitlist for a kidney
❌183 Australians are currently on the waitlist for a liver
❌100 are waiting for lungs
❌72 Aussies are currently on the waitlist for a heart transplant, including 11 kids and teens aged 18 and under
❌55 need a pancreas
❌13 million Australians are eligible to be an organ and tissue donor but aren’t!

If you want to find out more or register to be a donor, visit

If you sign up to be an organ donor this month, let us know! Pop onto our Facebook page and leave a comment, or send an email to

Consumer representative training – August and October dates


Build your skills as a consumer representative

We will be holding our popular training workshops for people who would like to build their skills in being a consumer representative:

📣 Introduction to consumer representation - Thursday 14 October, 10.15am - 2.15pm

📣 Advanced consumer representation
  • Wednesday 4 August, 10.15am - 2.15pm OR
  • Wednesday 27 October, 10.15am - 2.15pm

Here are a few comments from people who attended last year:
  • "Very satisfied and have a broader view and understanding at Committees." (intro)
  • "I feel I benefited most from the info served on what is expected from a [consumer rep]. I've been in meetings not knowing my purpose but I know where to look for it now." (intro)
  • "thanks... for your enthusiasm and knowledge - very useful" (advanced)
  • "Very informative with extensive links and support" (advanced)

Currently these sessions run twice a year. We recommend that you leave a few months between doing the intro and advanced sessions.

These sessions are held in person in East Perth. (We are in the process of trialling how we can extend access to people who can't attend in person. Watch this space!)

Find out more including how to register at

Connect with others - consumer, carer, community rep networking event

Come along and connect with other consumer, carer, community, family and lived experience representatives at the second of this year's free networking sessions.

Event details

Focus on how consumers and community members can be involved in using safety and quality information to drive improvements

At the last meeting, there was interest in discussing more about how consumers can be involved in using safety and quality information as they partner with health service providers to improve services. In this session we'll have a short presentation from Dr Tina Bertilone from the WA Department of Health and then discuss in small groups how you might be able to apply this information in your roles.

Share success, and ask for help

These sessions are also an opportunity for participants to share what is working well, and also to seek ideas for how to address challenges you might face in your role. There will also be time for informal networking using a range of online tools.

If you are unsure about joining a Zoom meeting, please give us a call on 08 9221 3422 and one of our team will talk you through it. If you've any questions, call that number or email

Choosing Wisely – It’s OK to ask questions

The Choosing Wisely Australia initiative, run by NPS MedicineWise, supports consumers to make informed decisions in partnership with their healthcare professionals in ways that suit their own preferences and personal circumstances.

It's OK to ask questions of your doctors and other healthcare providers about any tests, treatments and procedures being recommended to you.

Consumer participation opportunities

  • Every week we send out an email with information about consumer consultations, representative opportunities and relevant workshops - if you'd like to sign up for this you can do so at


COPD and CHF focus group

Do you have Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) or Chronic Heart Failure (CHF) or do you care for someone with COPD or CHF? WA Health needs your feedback.

We are inviting people with COPD or CHF or those who care for someone with COPD or CHF to participate in a group discussion regarding your healthcare experiences.

The focus group will take place on 9 August 2021 from 10am to 1pm (morning tea and light lunch provided) at The Carer Centre at 182 Lord Street, Perth. Please indicate below if you are located outside of the Perth area and we will follow-up with options for you to participate.

Please register at 

The discussion will be about your overall experiences receiving and accessing care across the health system, rather than specific details of previous medical treatments. To thank you for your contribution, participants will be compensated for their time.

Please provide us with your details below and someone will contact you to provide you with further information and to confirm your participation. Your contact details will not be shared with anyone else and you can opt out at anytime.

Your participation and feedback will help us develop services to support high-quality care closer to home. This initiative is a part of the WA Government’s Sustainable Health Review. If you would like to know more about the Sustainable Health Review, please click here or visit


Linear clinical trial centre consumer feedback survey

The Consumer and Community Involvement Program have partnered with Linear Clinical Research (Linear), a purpose built state-of-the-art, clinical trials facility to ensure voices are heard in the planning and development of a new purpose-built clinical trial centre which will allow more cancer patients of Western Australia to potentially benefit from new treatments through clinical trials.
Linear are currently looking for feedback on a survey that will assist in providing this voice from WA cancer patients, including those people who attend their clinic and their carer’s and those that have not utilised their services. Please follow the link if this is applicable to you.
Survey link:

Person-Centred Value-Based Health Care

You are invited to the launch of a global report focused on how to bring together Value-Based Health Care, Person-Centred Health Care and Population Equity.

You can choose from two virtual launches of the report, both of which will take place via Zoom. Program and speakers can be viewed here:

How do we link the goals of people receiving care to the outcomes we capture as healthcare systems?
How do we use this data to support decision making at all levels of the system and how does the data support the equitable allocation of resources at the population level?

Join us to hear practical perspectives and recommendations from global thought leaders in this area. SIGN UP NOW:

LAUNCH 1: Tuesday 28th September 2021, 9am-10:30am BST
LAUNCH 2: Thursday 30th September 2021, 4pm-5:30pm BST

National survey about virtual modes of health care delivery

You're invited to participate in a survey as part of a national research project called “Reimagining healthcare in Australia: the journey from telehealth to 21st century design" (conducted by the Consumers Health Forum of Australia, Digital Health CRC, Deloitte Australia and Curtin University), which aims to better understand consumer expectations of virtual healthcare. 
Virtual health is not just limited to using telehealth services but extends to such things as wearing health supporting gadgets and sensors, from mobile health applications to artificial intelligence, from robotic carers to electronic records. 

Find out more and take part here.

National Breast Density Research – Community Advisory Group

Applications close: 30 July 2021

Are you interested in how breast density may affect breast cancer screening outcomes?
Researchers at the University of Western Australia are looking for 4-5 women from across Australia to join an established community advisory group helping with their breast density research – NSW, ACT, NT, TAS and regional WA.
What skills or experience do I need?
  • You need to be a female between the ages of 40 and 74. You may have had personal experience with having a mammogram to screen for breast cancer (in either the public or private setting) but this is optional.
  • Knowledge of the health system, in particular screening programs or breast cancer diagnosis/treatment, would be beneficial.
  • Committee experience is preferred but not essential, however it is vital that you are able to consider differing opinions in regards to health policy.
  • Strong community links.
Find out more and apply via

YEP’s Youth Sector Summit 2021

Healthy relationships for young people and sexual health needs of subpopulations: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people, LGBTIQA+ young people, culturally and linguistically diverse young people (CaLD) and young people living with disabilities.

22 September, Maylands, WA.

Tickets on sale now!

Do you suffer from pelvic pain?

Researchers at Curtin University invite you to participate in a survey about your experiences.

Your feedback is critical in highlighting where further support is required to improve health care services for the management of pelvic pain. 

We are interested in understanding what people know about pelvic pain and their experiences with management. There are guidelines for health care professionals to assist management of pelvic pain. We want to know if these guidelines align to patient expectations.

WA Recovery College

The WA Recovery College Alliance (WARCA) is a unique partnership of 16 organisations to bring Recovery College courses to the entire state of Western Australia.  

On behalf of the WA Government the Mental Health Commission, WARCA brings this innovative approach in mental health recovery to meet the needs of metropolitan and rural, regional and remote communities.

Term 3 is starting up soon and we are excited to share with you that we will be running courses in Joondalup, Rivervale, and Northbridge. Some of these courses you may already be familiar with, such as Scents and Sounds, Date With a Donkey and Making Mandalas. However, we also have some new courses debuting this term: Dealing With Stress, and Indigenous Healing: Nikkeeta Healing Journey.

For more information, or to enrol, please visit

YEP Project sexual health workshops

The Youth Educating Peers (YEP) Project, operating under the Youth Affairs Council of Western Australia (YACWA) is travelling to Busselton to provide a series of free sexual health workshops for the youth sector.

These workshops will provide participants with skills and knowledge and increase their capacity to engage young people on these important topics. Participants will be provided with a range of intervention strategies, activities and resources that they can use directly with their clients.

These sessions are suitable for all people working professionally with young people aged 12-25, particularly youth workers.
Sex Positivity, Safe Sex, the Syphilis Outbreak, Healthy Relationships, and Consent.
9.30am-2pm , Wed 4 Aug. Busselton Community Resource Centre
For more information and to book:
3.30-5.30pm, Tues 3 Aug, Busselton Senior High School
For more information and to book:
Healthy Relationships and Consent
3.30-5.30pm, Wed 4 Aug, Busselton Senior High School
For more information and to book:


Royal Perth Bentley Group Consumer Advisory Committee - call for members

Royal Perth Bentley Group is starting a brand new Consumer Advisory Committee (CAC) in place of the Bentley and Royal Perth Hospital ones.

The RPBG CAC has been set up give the Consumer and Carer a voice to partner with the planning of the delivery of services, designing areas, developing policies and making service improvements where possible to enhance the delivery of care to the community.

If you would like to be a part of this and have the time to give your voice once a month for 2 hours, and feel you would like to embrace this opportunity, please call/email us: 08 9224 1637 or

Mental Health Needs and Community Supports - Regional Communities Survey

Have your say for your chance to win one of five $30 gift vouchers on offer
  • What supports are available in regional WA to help people with their mental health?
  • Do people have options for different needs - to assist with social connection, recovery and to live their best life?
  • Where are the difficulties and what is missing?
The Mental Health Needs and Community Supports – Regional Communities Survey aims to understand the needs for community mental health support options in regional areas. Often it is the experiences of people living in metropolitan Perth that informs services and policy settings, with the needs of people outside of Perth being less understood.
This work is being conducted by a partnership between the Western Australian Association for Mental Health and the Centre for Social Impact, University of Western Australia.
Together, they are seeking the views of mental health and alcohol and other drugs consumers, carers and family members, service providers and any community members with an interest in mental health or their community.
The team want to better understand what it is like to seek and receive support for mental health challenges while living in rural and regional WA.
This survey offers you the chance to be heard! Participants can also put their name down to go into a prize draw to win one of five Coles group gift vouchers valued at $30.

Survey Details
This survey is open to anyone living in WA with an interest in improving community mental health supports. You must be over 12 years old to complete the survey (if you are aged between 12 and 18 you need the consent of a parent or guardian to complete the survey).
The survey forms part of a larger project, where views will be gathered through forums, focus groups and interviews, across the state.

Greater access and choice is a fundamental component of a balanced mental health system that improves people’s outcomes and their lives.

The survey takes about 20 minutes to complete and is open now - you can skip questions or withdraw at any time. Participation is completely voluntary and all responses will remain confidential (identifying information will never be shared).
You can complete the survey with assistance if you like, or contact Lisette (details below) to complete the survey with an interview from a UWA researcher.

If you would like to discuss this survey, or the project, or to obtain a document copy of the Participant Information Form and/or Consent Details to keep, please contact:
Lisette Kaleveld, Research Officer, Centre for Social Impact
M. 0418 605 629


Complete the National LGBTIQ+ Palliative Care Survey

All LGBTIQ+ people should feel confident that they can access inclusive palliative care that is safe and respectful. The current research indicates that there are many barriers that prevent this.

LGBTIQ+ Australia is currently engaged in a three-year National Palliative Care Project that will build the capacity of the palliative care sector to provide culturally appropriate services to LGBTIQ+ people through:
  • Research - needs analysis report to inform content for education
  • Development of educational e-modules targeted at GPs and Practice Nurses
  • A dynamic network of Community of Practice groups focused on LGBTIQ+ inclusive palliative care.
LGBTIQ+ Health Australia and the Australian College of Applied Psychology (ACAP) are inviting LGBTIQ+ people and/or health professionals to share their views on palliative care.

Palliative care includes experiencing a life-limiting illness, facing end-of-life and bereavement. It is particularly important that palliative care is inclusive and appropriate for all LGBTIQ+ people.

You don’t have to be accessing palliative care services to participate in this survey. All views are welcome.

You can complete this survey if you are:
  • An LGBTIQ+ person
  • A health professional who is not LGBTIQ+
  • An LGBTIQ+ health professional
  • An Australia resident
  • 18 years and older
  • Proficient enough in English to complete an online survey in English
If you need assistance accessing this survey, please contact Hannah:

Research Advisory Committee - women with PCOS

Researchers from Western Sydney and Monash Universities are looking for consumer representatives to join a national Advisory Committee to provide advice and guidance on a research project on managing Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) in general practice. They are keen to involve a representative from WA.

You will be asked to attend two online (Zoom) meetings over a 12 month period starting in August and may be asked for advice on the project via email in between meetings. An honorarium of $100 by gift voucher will be provided.

Click here to view a copy of the Terms of Reference.

Please contact Dr Carolyn Ee by the end of July 2021 to express interest or for more information.

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