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eAlert: Promoting powerful partnerships in health

In this issue:

Health Consumers Queensland responds to COVID-19

e-Alert focuses on powerful partnerships which inform and shape the COVID-19 response

As the number of positive cases increases throughout Queensland and Australia this week, Health Consumers Queensland has been focusing on ensuring that consumers' voices are heard by staff in the health system. Your views and perspectives are actively shaping the way that the COVID-19 healthcare response is communicated and delivered now and during the coming weeks and months.

This week:

Health Consumers Queensland is working hard to make sure health consumers continue to be part of important decision-making – even during a global pandemic

We are doing this by attending daily or weekly meetings on:

  • Clinical matters
  • Mental health
  • Disability health
  • Community health
  • Stakeholder networks
  • Communications
  • Maternity
  • and with other NGOs.

We also connected with health consumer organisations across the country to share strategies and resources.

Do you feel you have the right information to make decisions on COVID-19 for you and your family?

31 members of our new COVID-19 Community of Interest Group and the Department of Health joined a 'Consumer Conversations' feedback session via Zoom yesterday. We asked them:

- Do you feel you have the right information to make decisions on COVID-19 for you and your family?
- What is causing concern or confusion right now?
- Where are you getting good information, and where are you getting support?

Their feedback communicated an urgent need for clear, truthful, inclusive and consistent messaging from governments at state and federal level.

Supporting HHS engagement leads

We are hosting a weekly 30 minute Zoom session for HHS engagement staff to share and receive updates on consumer involvement and partnerships around COVID-19. The first session was held yesterday and engagement leads exchanged information around involving consumers who have recovered from COVID-19 and shared resources on effective online engagement. 

Advising the Department of Health's Strategic Communications Branch

Tomorrow, a group of consumers and carers  will be providing feedback to the Department of Health's Strategic Communications Branch on a range of messages aimed at keeping all Queenslanders up to date on the latest COVID-19 information. 

It’s heartening to see staff responsive to consumer perspectives. We would like to thank consumers for responding so ably to time-urgent requests.  Your perspectives are valued and acknowledged. Thank you.

HCQ Website - keeping consumers at the centre of the response

Keep an eye on our dedicated COVID-19 page for our latest COVID-related news, activities and opportunities.

Vist the page
COVID-19 opportunities and resources for consumers, carers and engagement staff 

Join a state-wide network of consumers and carers who can be involved in rapid COVID-19 responses 

We need a community of interested consumers/carers who are able to be on stand-by for COVID-19 response opportunities at short notice including joining a weekly COVID-19 ''Consumer Conversations'' Zoom with the Department of Health to help them keep consumers at the centre of their COVID-19 response.

Please register your details via the link below. 


Join COVID-19 Community of Interest

Accurate, user-friendly and easy-read facts and information about COVID-19 for people with disabilities from QDN

Queensland Disability Network (QDN) has produced user-friendly, easy-read resources to give accurate information to people about COVID-19 including:

  • What is Coronavirus?
  • What does self isolation mean?
  • An essential items checklist (aimed at giving people ideas on what to spend the $750 stimulus payment on).

QDN is also developing an individual response planning tool for people with disability, to assist you and your supporters to think through the key things you need in place to keep yourselves mentally and physically well. The tool aims to give practical tips around things you can do to plan now so you have some control over what happens over the next few months.

Download QDN resources

Consumers and carers: how to use Zoom and ensure your voice is heard during COVID-19

We are working to ensure that the consumer voice remains at the heart of the COVID-19 health response. One of the most effective ways to share your views right now is via online video conferencing platforms like Zoom. We would like to help you build your skills to use Zoom with confidence so that you can host and join meetings online, self-organise and have an impact on planning and decision-making in your regions and local communities.

Zoom is free and easy to download if you have a computer which has a microphone, camera and reliable internet.

If you are new to Zoom, take a look at these resources to get up and running. 

Written instructions  

Getting Started with Zoom 

Using the Zoom controls within a meeting 


How to join a Zoom meeting 

Using meeting controls. This video also discusses controlling a meeting from the host’s point of view, but does have useful information for participants about using Zoom. 

How consumers and carers, together with staff in the Department, HHSs and the broader health sector, can work in partnership during COVID-19 

Consumers who are currently involved on a committee

 We suggest you ask how and when you may be involved in the decisions being made about COVID-19 and provide feedback about what you are hearing/seeing among your network they may need to respond to.   

Staff in the Department, HHS and the broader health sector

We suggest you keep the consumer representatives you have been working with, informed and updated about what’s going on by sharing key information with them. We also recommend you involve these consumers (and maybe more) to be at the decision-making table as you make collaborative decisions about your response to COVID-19.   

Tip sheet for HHS staff on how to involve consumers in COVID-19 planning, decision-making and communications

Health Consumers Queensland's tip sheet for HHS staff gives clear and useful guidance on how to involve consumers in COVID-19 planning, decision-making and communications. 

We have sent it to HHS Chief Executives and Engagement Advisors.  Please circulate it to any staff and consumers you know who should be partnering together on the local development of COVID-19 strategy and communications.
Download COVID-19 tip sheet
Health Consumers Queensland Opportunities

Health Consumers Queensland encourages consumers and carers to continue applying for non-COVID-19 related opportunities promoted in this eAlert.

Consumer keynote speaker at the Australasian Delirium Association Conference, 3-4 September 2020

The Australasian Delirium Association (ADA) is seeking up to two (2) consumers and/or carers to present on their experience and perspectives of delirium as an opening keynote speaker for the ADA conference on Thursday 3rd and Friday 4th September 2020.

Closing date: 5pm, Thursday 9 April 2020

Australasian Delirium Association (ADA)

The ADA is a health professional organization which aims to advance research and knowledge about delirium to improve clinical practice related to delirium prevention, recognition and management across a range of disciplines and specialties. They aim to provide better understanding of delirium through leadership, education, resources, research and partnerships

The DECLARED conference is the major educational event convened by the ADA, and will be held for the first time in Brisbane in 2020.


Delirium (acute confusion) is a common and distressing hospital-associated complication which increases with age, and remains under-recognised. The committee hopes that opening the conference with consumer and carer perspectives will help to raise awareness of the individual and family impact of this serious condition, as well as the disease features and system impact which are more traditionally emphasised in health professional conferences.

Other major conference speakers include visiting clinician and academic experts from USA, UK, Europe and Australia from nursing, medical and science backgrounds. The organizing committee for the DECLARED2020 conference are based in Brisbane and include medical, nursing and allied health clinicians interested in delirium and delirium research.
Read more

Have a voice in the way that people are cared for in a medical emergency

Closing date: close of business on Tuesday, 31 March 2020

The Emergency Medicine Foundation is inviting an experienced health consumer representative to influence and promote positive patient, family, consumer and community experience and outcomes for emergency care.

The Emergency Medicine Foundation is:

  • funding innovative Australian research to improve patient care in a medical emergency
  • dedicated to translating research outcomes into real and practical benefits, which help save lives in medical emergencies
  • supporting emergency health professionals – doctors, nurses, paramedics, retrieval staff and allied health professionals and work with hospitals, patients, government, NFP organisations and the wider community
  • delivering better and more effective health services through research to improve healthcare, health outcomes, save lives and money.


  • To partner with a unique, non-profit organisation to promote positive patient, family, consumer and community experience and outcomes from emergency care, through robust research and making change happen.
  • Lead and engage with their Board and Executive to help shape the future of EMF.
  • Be a guiding voice for an organisation that has limited consumer involvement and take it to a place where the consumer voice is pivotal, underpinning the work they do.
  • As the first consumer representative with EMF, this role will shape the future of consumer partnering and EMF’s future. In many ways the role will be shaped by you, and may include attending meetings, providing advice on documents – such as strategies and research initiatives, and also representing EMF.


Read more
Opportunities from other Organisations 

Consultation open: draft National Safety and Quality Digital Mental Health Standards

The Australian Government Department of Health (the Department) has contracted the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care (the Commission) to develop National Safety and Quality Digital Mental Health (NSQDMH) Standards.

The development of the NSQDMH Standards is a significant first step in providing safety and quality assurance for digital mental health service users, and best practice guidance for service providers and developers.

The Commission defines a digital mental health service as a mental health, suicide prevention, or alcohol and other drugs service that uses technology to facilitate engagement and the delivery of care.

The draft NSQDMH Standards are now available on the Commission’s website for public consultation.

To support the consultation process, the Commission is holding a series of webinars and public forums in March-April 2020 in all capital cities and three regional locations. These forums will be facilitated by Dr Peggy Brown AO, Senior Clinical Advisor, and will give stakeholders a chance to discuss the draft NSQDMH Standards, provide feedback and ask questions of the project team.

The Commission invites consumers and carers, clinicians, service providers, and all stakeholders wishing to attend a forum or webinar to register their interest.

Download the draft NSQDMH Standards and register for a forum or webinar

Your input during the consultation process will inform the final draft of the NSQDMH Standards the Commission provides to the Department for approval in June 2020.

For further information please contact:
       Ben Prest
       Senior Project Officer
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