We have a small, but energetic and committed team at HCA who work to support our members and Consumer Advocates, and ensure there is a strong consumer voice in the planning, delivery, review and monitoring of health services in South Australia.
Michael Cousins is Chief Executive of Health Consumers Alliance of SA Inc (HCA), the peak body for health consumers and health consumer organisations in South Australia. Michael has over 20 years' experience in health and community services, in government and non-government organisations. Michael leads HCA to position consumers and the community at the centre of health care, and advocates for the development of a consumer-centred health system.
Michael is a public health advocate and policy leader. He represents health consumers on a number of senior committees within South Australia and nationally. He is a member of the Ministerial Clinical Advisory Group for Transforming Health, the State Government’s health reform program; chair of the Consumer and Community Engagement Committee for Transforming Health; chair of the Partnering with Consumers and Community Advisory Group for SA Health; and chair of the Partnering with Consumers Committee for the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care. Michael is a member of the executive committees for the SA Academic Health Research Translation Centre; Consumer and Community Engagement Committee for the SA Health and Medical Research Institute; and SA NT DataLink.
Ellen Kerrins is the Manager for Advocacy and Policy at HCA. She is also a member of the Southern Adelaide Local Health Network Governing Council, and Board Director for Helping Hand Aged Care.
Ellen has proven ability to lead, consult with and advise health business units to effect organisational improvement. She has demonstrated capabilities in connecting with people, building and leading high performing teams. Having worked in government and not for profit sectors, Ellen is adaptive, resilient and outcomes focused. With over 20 years' experience as a leader, manager, executive and board director, Ellen remains committed to public health. Ellen has a broad range of competencies with particular expertise in nursing, cancer control, primary health care and workforce reform. She is passionate about working with consumer-focused health care providers and services.
Kathy Mickan is the Manager, Consumer and Community Engagement at HCA. With more than 25 years’ experience in the health and community services sector, Kathy has extensive experience engaging with stakeholders, with a particular focus on young people, health and mental health. Kathy has a passion for authentic engagement, building capacity and working collaboratively to achieve positive health outcomes for individuals and communities.
Karen Shepherd is the Project Officer at HCA, and has a background in education and health services spanning more than 25 years. She brings experience in health promotion, communications, community education and media liaison. Karen has worked in the government and not for profit sectors, and is passionate about primary health care. Karen has an enduring commitment to improving health outcomes through effective communication and building partnerships.
Vanessa Vowles is an Administration and Digital Communications Officer at HCA. In her role she is also responsible for the eNews and the HCA website. Vanessa has worked in the area of Administration for over 15 years, and has wide and varied experience in Administrations and Communications in both Adelaide and Sydney. She is passionate about online engagement, and would love to see health consumers actively engaged online, as well as through existing traditional methods.
Teresa Duncan is an Administrative Officer at HCA. She has a background in customer relations and office administration with research centres such as the Quality Use of Medicines Research Centre, Ian Wark Research Institute and SANT DataLink. Teresa is keen to utilise and extend her knowledge in an environment that promotes the consumer voice, health and wellbeing.
The Transforming Health Consumer and Community Engagement Committee (THCCEC) Activities Report is now available. HCA would like to thank all the consumers and community members who volunteered their time and provided their wisdom to the Committee, which had its final meeting in September 2017. The report summarises the activities of the committee and the experiences of the consumer and community members as well as those of SA Health representatives who attended the meetings. Recommendations regarding future engagement in health strategy and policy are also included. You can view the report below.
HCA hosted a forum on Power Dependency on Wednesday 15 November 2017. The forum had two key objectives, to review the proposed Power Dependency Strategy and associated messaging to inform the development of a Communications Plan, and support processes for potentially vulnerable people and their carers/families; and to identify what consumers should do to prepare for and manage an outage. The report summarising the key findings arising from the forum is available below.
HCA hosted a forum on consumer experience of SA Health funded services on Wednesday 29 November 2017. The forum objective was for participants to establish an approach across SA Health that ensures community-based services funded through SA Health have a consumer-centred care focus. The report outlining the main themes to emerge from the forum is now available for download below.
The Consumers Health Forum of Australia (CHF) have released a media statement in response to a new report showing that public patients wait twice as long for elective surgery as private patients do in public hospitals. You can read the full statement here.
HCA is pleased to publish this Directory of advocacy / complaints services. It provides a summary of advocacy / complaints services that can assist individuals and families who wish to provide feedback or make a complaint about health, aged care or disability services. The role of each service and the degree of individual advocacy it provides is summarised, and contact details are listed. You can access the directory here.
Friday 16 February 2018
Netfest is South Australia's largest professional development and networking event for non-government youth sector workers. The day-long event brings together over a hundred dedicated youth sector workers, stakeholders and supporters from across the state to discuss ideas, projects and inspire best practice. Netfest includes both formal and informal networking, a keynote presentation, professional development session and an open forum. You can find out more and register here.
Are you thinking about becoming a consumer advocate or would you like to refresh your knowledge?
Our Introduction to Consumer Advocacy Training session will give you information on the role, challenges and benefits of being a consumer advocate.
The sessions are interactive and based on adult-learning principles. Participants receive reference materials and a certificate of attendance.
For more information see attached flyer
The upcoming training date is: