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Political pledges, ministerial announcements, AMR apocalypse & unlocking digital health: VHA Annual

Posted 23 August 2018

The 2018 VHA Annual Conference: Rethink, reset, reimagine explored ideas, innovatons and insights for the healthcare sector to work towards a stronger Victorian health system last week at the MCG.

‘We delivered a program to encourage the sector to explore the challenges and opportunities we’re facing and equip them with innovative ideas and strategies,’ said Tom Symondson, VHA Chief Executive.

Over 150 attendees participated in the two-day conference, including healthcare CEOs, sector representatives, exhibitors and partners. 

A highlight of the conference was special presentation on responding to the challenges of antimicrobial resistance that featured a video interview with global antimicrobial resistance advocate and Chief Medical Officer for England, Prof. Dame Sally Davies. 

‘Fleming predicted it would happen and essentially drug resistant infections are rising steadily and they’re rising because we don’t prevent infections well enough and bugs, whether they’re bacteria viruses, fungi, or malarial parasites, keep building resistance and good diagnostics have not been there,’ said Dame Sally. ‘The world is getting steadily worse and the drug resistant infections death rate is going up year on year.’

Speaking on the importance of resilience when responding to challenges, was Clare Keenan, survivor advocate and former advisor to former New Zealand Prime Minister, Helen Clark.  ‘Sadly, being a victim becomes a defining moment for many people,’ said Ms Keenan. ‘With institutional settings and reactions that not only support but sometimes force the self-perception of those that have gone through trauma – no freedom, no integrity of individual experience and will, and quite simply, I don’t think we can afford to have a society that doesn’t foster and value resilience.’

Unlocking the world of opportunities in digital health was digital health expert, Dr Richard Ashby, Chief Executive of eHealth Queensland and, award-winning foreign correspondent Sara James talked about the current climate of global politics.

Minister for Health, the Hon. Jill Hennessey outlined Labor's  health positions, Shadow Minister for Health, the Hon. Mary Wooldridge, announced the Liberal Party’s election commitment to inject $175 million into home and community care, Nina Springle MP of The Greens formally pledged to stand with community health, as did leader of the REASON Party, Fiona Pattern MP.

The VHA thanks the following partners and exhibitors for their support and participation in the conference:

  • First State Super
  • VHAPlus+
  • PwC
  • Clear Web Solutions
  • Clear to Work
  • Governance Evaluator
  • Health Metrics
  • iPro
  • Rosemary Hardham and Associates
  • RSM
  • Russell Kennedy Lawyers
  • State Trustees
  • The HDR Group
  • Weploy
  • Cloud Payroll
  • Importal
  • Bank First
  • Switch
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