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4 years ago

MSWA Bulletin Magazine Winter 18

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From the desk of the CEO

From the desk of the CEO MARCUS STAFFORD A message from the General Manager – Member Services SUE SHAPLAND RN, BN In an ever-changing world, we are often faced with change and the challenges that accompany it. That’s when our minds toy with the concepts of time, complexity or even ‘gee … I really don’t need this!’ You can feel like you’re swimming against the tide. But let me reassure you that we are swimming with you and we will all arrive safely back on shore! Our 750+ staff at MSWA are here to help you ask the right questions and in turn, get the best answers that suit your own needs. I’m talking about the NDIS, which has been causing more than a few ripples in our community of late. The overarching concept of the NDIS, which is a customercentric model, allowing choice and control for people with a disability, remains critically important. However, the transition from a centralised model to a customer-centric process, is not without its challenges. Unfortunately, our brave new world has caught some organisations off guard. This has led to both financial and service stress. Indeed, some organisations are considering their ongoing viability. But, not us. I am delighted to advise that at MSWA we are really enjoying the overdue concept of customer choice, and we are delivering a range of engagement opportunities. So, how are we making sure that no one slips through the cracks? Our efficient and supportive NDIS team are here to help you navigate the process, through information sessions in your areas, and face to face meetings to outline what you will need for your NDIS plan. We are here to help and support you, every step of your journey. I’m proud that our core values (that the customer is at the heart of everything we do), are being reflected by the Sector, and more broadly across the State. We take our leadership responsibility very seriously. In my view, our customers are the most valuable and deserving of all. Do you want to receive the Bulletin online? Want monthly information updates? Register your email address today to start receiving our monthly Vitality e-newsletter and the Bulletin magazine online. Just email or call 9365 4814 and let us know your current email address. How are we going as an organisation within this new environment? Really well. As we head closer to the end of the financial year, I’m pleased to say that we’ve had a record year in delivering Member and Client services, a record contribution to research, and are building the largest footprint in our history. All this bodes very well for our future and although I feel for those organisations who may be ‘doing it tough,’ the market is designed to allow the strongest organisations to deliver the best service to people with disabilities. Strength comes from both the number of things that we do, and the quality of the service provided by our staff. I would like to thank them and acknowledge their tremendous efforts, validated by the Member and Client service surveys that we have received. On recent events, our Members’ Forum was successful, providing updates on local research and other important matters. Sue Shapland will go into further detail in her Bulletin article. World MS Day was also a notable day, with the global theme of ‘Bringing Us Together,’ holding significant importance for MSWA, as it recognised our nationwide leadership status in funding research. That research commitment now covering Western Australia, Australia and international research, is dedicated to finding both a cause and cure for MS, and is also exploring important options around quality of life. For me, the day represents acknowledging our Members, their lives and everyone touched by MS. Feedback from both the media and the general population confirmed the achievement of our objectives. So, please be reassured. We understand the nature of our changing world and we appreciate the challenges that you are facing to navigate the complexities of the NDIS. We’re there for you. Together we will glide gracefully through the tide of change, determined to come out the other end better and stronger! Until next time. “Never tell me the sky’s limit when there are footprints on the moon” Unknown. It never ceases to amaze me how many quotes come up on Google you have never seen before, but I liked this one! True to form, the year is rolling by quite quickly and there is so much going on not only here at MSWA, but in WA and all around the world. The Royal Wedding was a welcome reprieve from much of the bad news that seems to be going on around the world, whilst my invitation didn’t arrive, I was able to watch it for days on all stations! We are so lucky to live in WA and indeed Australia – great weather, beautiful scenery, pretty good standard of living and quality health care; despite some challenges overall, it’s pretty good. Of course, the NDIS is another bonus. Whilst not fully rolled out yet, we know the difference it will make for so many people living with MS, who previously couldn’t access funding for necessary supports and/or equipment in a timely fashion. The NDIS will be expanding its cover in WA from July 1, covering the south metro area, Bunbury, Joondalup, and Wanneroo local government areas in October. Our experienced MSWA NDIS team is dedicated to supporting our Members through the process, from educating about the Scheme to one-on-one support for pre-planning, all designed to help you navigate the system and get your best plan. See Nigel’s article in this edition. Our information sessions have already begun in the south metro area but please contact our staff for information and support. As you will know, we are currently building our new services hub and high support accommodation facility in Butler. This is coming along beautifully and will be a fantastic addition to our footprint. More importantly, it will provide high quality homes for the 10 residents who will live there, as well as fabulous resources including a large physio gym and consulting rooms. Under the guidance of Andrea Taylor and our interior designer, the décor will be amazing and innovative if the colour boards are an indication! World MS Day and MS Awareness Week were once again celebrated with special events and promotional activities in the City, which get better each year under the guidance of our Communications and Events Managers. We also held the Members’ Forum with guest speakers including local researchers Professor Prue Hart and Dr Lucinda Black. Raising awareness about MS is so important, and with this year’s focus on research, it’s only fitting to remind ourselves what a huge financial contribution MSWA has made to MS research over the years, and what a difference that money has made to so many researchers. There is so much ongoing research around the world as they still search for more answers on the cause, how and why progression occurs, better treatments and ultimately a cure. There are now over 200 genes implicated in MS! MSWA also allocates part of our research funds to the very important work being done through the International Progressive MS Alliance; understanding why progression occurs and are there treatments to prevent this. As you may know we are also undergoing a refurbishment at Wilson; there has been much upheaval, but the results are looking amazing. With stage two of three now complete, the end is in sight and we can get Outreach back on site and resume normal services once more. We are undergoing a lot of change in many ways but what doesn’t change is our commitment to supporting our Members throughout their MS journey. If you would like to speak with an MS nurse or other health team members please call us on 9365 4840 or use We are here to provide you with information and updates and advice, just give us a call. 4 | MSWA BULLETIN WINTER 2018 MSWA BULLETIN WINTER 2018 | 5