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1. Scope

1.1. This procedure describes Open Arms governance arrangements, including Open Arms management meetings and reporting in Open Arms and the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA).

2. Context

2.1. Governance is an overarching term for Open Arms accountability structures and processes and covers management teams, committees and reporting. 

2.2. Management meetings are held to develop strategy, plan implementation, review, and prioritise. Meeting documentation is maintained by the area/position responsible.

2.3. From time to time, less formal meetings are held which nonetheless discuss important issues. Outcomes from those meetings are usually recorded in project documentation or may be noted and held by individual participants.

2.4. Open Arms governance is also based on hierarchical reporting in Open Arms, and from Open Arms to the Secretary and the Chief Health Officer (and ultimately the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs). Open Arms also reports to a number of committees on a regular basis.

3. Expected Outcomes

3.1. The Open Arms Governance Procedure is intended to:

  • provide specific direction to enable application of governance policy.
  • articulate the vehicles and mechanisms for governance within Open Arms.

4. Structure

Minister’s Independent National Advisory Committee

4.1. The role of the Minister’s Independent National Advisory Committee (NAC) is to:

  • deliver independent and distinctive advice to the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs (the Minister) on the needs of the veteran community and ways in which these can be addressed through Open Arms. 
  • support Open Arms to develop programs and service delivery arrangements that:
  • are responsive to the mental healthcare needs of Australian veterans and their families
  • are based on a health and wellness approach
  • assist in liaising with other mental health agencies to facilitate a coordinated approach to mental health care
  • are consistent with the Australian Government’s mental health policy, enabling Open Arms to fulfil its role as a key component of DVA’s delivery of community-based mental health care. 
  • provide guidance to Open Arms on:
  • issues and needs in the veteran and defence communities that impact the delivery of Open Arms programs
  • strategic service delivery partnerships that enable Open Arms to play its part with other providers in an integrated approach to mental health care. 
  • assess and report to the Minister on the operations and quality of outcomes delivered to the veteran community through Open Arms programs (see NAC Meetings Instruction (100 01/02)).

4.2. Meetings of the NAC are held three times per year.

4.3. Members of the NAC are encouraged to participate in Regional Advisory Forum meetings.

4.4. The Chair and appointed members of the NAC are appointed by the Minister for a term of three years and are intended to represent the broader veteran community and veteran health services.

4.5. The Secretariat is the executive officer to the National Manager.

4.6. Records are held on the Open Arms website and TRIM 1402152.

National Management Team

4.7. The National Management Team (NMT) ensures that 24/7 client assist and regional considerations are taken into account when developing policies and procedures, and provides leadership to support the implementation and oversight of planning, monitoring, evaluation and service delivery. The NMT also contributes to the development of the annual Open Arms Business Plan. NMT roles and responsibilities are defined in the NMT Terms of Reference (see 100 01/ 01 NMT Meetings Instruction).

4.8. NMT meeting outcomes are disseminated to staff through Regional Directors, the Director Client Assist and the National Manager’s staff updates.

4.9. Details relating to NMT meetings are as follows:

4.9.1. They are held by regular video and telephone conferences and supplemented by a number of face-to-face meetings each year.

4.9.2. They are chaired by the National Manager.

4.9.3. Members are the National Manager, Assistant National Manager, Open Arms Directors and the Director Client Assist.

4.9.4. The Secretariat is the Executive Officer to the National Manager.

4.9.5. Records are managed by the Executive Officer to the National Manager.

National teams (roles now within the Mental Health and Wellbeing Services Division)

4.10. Open Arms national office teams are each led by a National Director who has delegation for the functions of that section. National Directors are supported by Assistant Directors, who have direct oversight of staff in their teams.

4.11. National section team meetings are routinely convened. Details relating to these meetings are as follows:

4.11.1. They are held fortnightly to monthly.

4.11.2. They are chaired by the National Director.

4.11.3. The members are all staff in the section.

4.11.4. The Secretariat is the Section Support Officer.

4.11.5. Records are managed by the Section Support Officer.

Client Assist Contact Centre team

4.12. The Client Assist Contact Centre (Client Assist) is led by a Director who has delegation for 24/7 operations and service delivery. The Director Client Assist has a leadership team, comprising Assistant Directors and a Clinical Practice Manager, who assist with the direction and oversight of service delivery, clinical and clinical support staff and business support.

4.13. Client Assist team meetings are routinely convened. Details relating to meetings are as follows:

4.13.1. They are held fortnightly to monthly.

4.13.2. They are chaired by the Director Client Assist.

4.13.3. The Members are all staff in the Client Assist Contact Centre.

4.13.4. The Secretariat is the Clinical Practice Manager.

4.13.5. Records are held by the Clinical Practice Manager.

Regional teams

4.14. Open Arms regions are each led by a Regional Director who has delegation for local operations and service delivery. Regional Directors lead a Regional Leadership team, comprising Assistant Directors and Regional Clinical Practice Managers, who assist with the direction and oversight of clinical support staff and business support and are responsible for clinical support (see Regional Meetings Instruction (100 01/03)).

4.15. Regional team meetings are routinely convened. Details relating to these meetings are as follows:

4.15.1. They are held fortnightly to monthly.

4.15.2. They are chaired by the Regional Director.

4.15.3. The Members are all staff in the region.

4.15.4. The Secretariat is the Regional Clinical Practice Manager.

4.15.5. Records are held by the Regional Clinical Practice Manager.



Related pages

100_01 Governance Procedure.pdf

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