CEO Primary Matters – 1 December 2021

International Day of People with Disability

This Friday 3 December is International Day of People with Disability. IDPwD is a United Nations observed day aimed at increasing public awareness, understanding and acceptance of people with disability. The theme of IDPwD 2021 is ‘Leadership and participation of persons with disabilities toward an inclusive, accessible and sustainable post-COVID-19 world’.

Western Victoria PHN (WVPHN) is working towards becoming a leader of inclusive practice aligned with the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disability. Our team will be acknowledging IDPwD with an all-staff educational event, hosted by our Supporting People with Intellectual Disability to Access Health (SPIDAH) team.

I look forward to celebrating this important day with WVPHN staff as we strive to build awareness and knowledge of disability and develop a greater understanding of the societal barriers that impact people with a disability. It is also an opportunity to reflect on the work WVPHN is doing in this space, including the work of our SPIDAH Project, and to spark conversations about practical actions we can implement to ensure inclusive practice.

Spotlight on immunisation

Thank you to all the healthcare practitioners who joined us for the inaugural Statewide PHN Immunisation Forum over two nights in November. It was a privilege to work with the other Victorian Primary Health Networks to bring this event to life and this collaborative approach delivered an impressive agenda of presentations, covering a diverse range of immunisation-related topics.

An audience of nurse immunisers, practice nurses, GPs, practice managers and pharmacists from across the state heard updates on the National and Victorian Immunisation program, vaccine catch-up doses, and the COVID-19 vaccination program. Over 260 participants attended the first forum session, while the second event welcomed 206 attendees. The vast majority of attendees reported that their learning needs were entirely met and 100% of post-event survey respondents reported that they would attend a PHN collaborative event in the future.

I would also like to acknowledge our guest speakers for their insightful presentations:

  • Dr Simon Madin
  • Dr Jessica Kaufman
  • Sonja Elia
  • Megan Beasley
  • Sonya Black
  • Angela Mason

Thank You Campaign

You may have seen our latest Thank You campaign in the local papers last month. WVPHN community advertisements featured in the Ballarat Courier, Geelong Advertiser, Warrnambool Standard and Wimmera Mail Times recognised the achievement of reaching a >95% first dose rate across all 21 of WVPHN’s local government areas (LGAs). Most importantly, this campaign is a token of gratitude to all of the people across western Victoria who have rolled up their sleeves to get vaccinated. Thank you for keeping our communities safe and helping us say goodbye to COVID-19.

16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence

Lastly, today is Day 7 of the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, a global initiative calling for the prevention and elimination of gender inequalities and violence against women and girls. The 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence runs from 25 November, International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women to 10 December, Human Rights Day.

Respect Victoria has put together a 16 Days of Activism toolkit, which includes fantastic resources and ways to get involved in this important campaign. Access the toolkit here.

Rowena Clift

Chief Executive Officer

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