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Campaign to protect your services

Sep. 05, 2018

The provision of health information and education services so many of you rely on are at risk.

Living with an on-going and chronic condition such as Parkinson’s can be physically and emotionally debilitating. That is why we strive to ensure not just our members, but the wider Parkinson’s community, are not alone.

From education to specialist advice or just being there on the end of the phone when you need someone to talk to – Parkinson’s Victoria provides the specialist support and connectivity that can be lacking in the general medical community.

Over the past 16 months, Parkinson’s Victoria has been part of an alliance of four state-based neurological organisations lobbying the Victorian Government to reverse its decision to withdraw your Health Information funding, effective from 1 July 2019.

Our Parkinson’s community relies heavily on the State Government’s $270,000 recurrent funding to deliver essential services tailored to the Parkinson’s community including the health information phone line, peer support activities and development and delivery of Parkinson’s education.

This funding is provided under the umbrella of Disability Services. However, with the roll-out of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), this State Government money is being directed to the national scheme.

This scheme will support a small percentage of people living with Parkinson’s, however the majority will be ineligible and out of scope for services. This will leave agencies such as Parkinson’s Victoria without funding to provide the vital services so many of you have come to rely on during your Parkinson’s journey.

Unfortunately, this is an unintended consequence of the NDIS that will impact some 80,000 Victorians living with chronic neurological conditions, including many of the 27,000 living with Parkinson’s.

In endeavor to resolve the issue, The Neurological Alliance (Epilepsy, Motor Neurone Disease, Multiple Sclerosis and Parkinson’s) have sought for the State Government to recognise these conditions as health-related.

Parkinson’s is a neurological health condition. As such, we have been calling on the State Government to continue its funding to ensure Victorians with Parkinson’s will not lose access to condition-specific, tailored health information, education and peer support programs.

We remain committed to ensuring the needs of people living with Parkinson’s, and all those who care for them, are heard. We continue to meet with key government Ministers, MPs, candidates and community partners to lobby for ongoing funding for our organisation and the community we support.

We know that individuals can have a powerful influence on Government. That is why Parkinson’s Victoria is now asking you, our members, to help lobby the State Government and State Opposition to continue to support your vital services.

How you can help

The Victorian election will take place in November 2018. The lead up to an election is the time for people to share opinions with their local Members of Parliament (MP) about what matters most to them.

If you are concerned about withdrawal of State Government funding of your Parkinson’s-specific health services, we ask you to get in touch with your local MP to raise awareness of the impacts of Parkinson’s and why ongoing funding of these services are critical to you.

Please use the Election Advocacy Toolkit (under Download Resources) to help plan your approach. It includes information on how to contact your MP as well as statistics and information about the impact of the funding withdrawal to the Parkinson’s community.

We thank you for your support. If you have any questions about the funding campaign or information on communicating with your local MP, call us on (03) 8809 0400 or email info@parkinsons-vic.org.au

 

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