From the Executive Officer’s Desk: November 2021

IEPCP update

Now that the PCP transition direction has been announced, the Department of Health has established a Transition Project Reference Group to support the PCP program transition. Membership is made up of representatives from VicPCP Leadership Executive, Department of Health, and Department of Families (DH), Fairness and Housing (DFFH).

The group will codesign the high-level transition plan to support the implementation of the transition into Local Public Health Units (PHUs). They provide advice and direction to the Department of Health Transition Project Team on planning for the implementation, reviewing progress, and providing feedback on the approach through ongoing consultation with PCPs. We look forward to working closely with the East division over the coming months and will keep partners up to date as more information comes to hand.

We bade farewell to Sharon Porteous last month who left to pursue an exciting health promotion career opportunity. I would like to especially thank partners who expressed their gratitude and appreciation for Sharon’s leadership and support to them over past years.

We have been extremely fortunate to have recruited Sarah Lausberg into the role of Healthy Ageing and Engagement Coordinator, who comes to us from healthAbility, and has worked with many of our partners. Sarah brings local knowledge and specialist skills that will be valuable in supporting our partners over the coming months. Welcome to the team, Sarah.

Partner activity

October commenced with numerous partner activities to commemorate Mental Health Week. This year there has been a strong focus on the impacts of the pandemic on people’s health and wellbeing, including health of staff. It was exciting to be part of a planning session on mental health prevention, initiated by EMHSCA and facilitated by Bronwyn Williams from Eastern Health who does an amazing job coordinating this large and very active regional cross sectoral partnership. I also enjoyed attending sessions organised by Boroondara Mental Health Alliance, listening to front-line staff from across agencies; carers, and people with lived experience sharing stories of resilience and wellbeing strategies.

Our team also had an opportunity to participate in Wellbeing sessions, funded by the Department of Health, to support PCPs during this time of significant organisational change. The sessions were facilitated by Jolie Wills who is a Cognitive Psychologist and an expert in disaster and disruption at Hummingly. They also offer a free Pandemic Pack which might be useful for you or your teams.

I would also like to acknowledge the extensive work being undertaken by Integrated Health Promotion funded agencies and the Inner East IHP Partnership. It has been a very big year of reporting on the achievements of the last 4-year plan and preparing a new strategic plan for the next 4-year cycle. This was an incredible effort of leadership, teamwork and report development, by Access Health & Community, healthAbility, Link/Latrobe Health & Community, Women’s Health East, and IEPCP staff.

In other health and wellbeing activity, Enliven PCP, together with Frankston Mornington Peninsula PCP and Southern Melbourne PCP, led an informative and interactive cross-sectoral workshop ‘How to talk about Climate Change and Health’. Helpful resources can be found on The Well.

Southern Melbourne PCP also led a webinar launching their innovative and excellent Age-Friendly resource: Framing Age Message Guide….I encourage partners interested in social inclusion and healthy ageing to check this out.

We acknowledge the Wurundjeri people and other peoples of the Kulin nation as the traditional owners of the land on which our work in the community takes place. We pay our respects to their Elders past and present.

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