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Brave recovery for a girl who fell to earth

SCIA member and client Emma Carey has been featured in the Canberra Times. Emma's story is amazing and she continues to improve every week that she attends our Walk On gym in Sydney. Well done Emma for telling your story and your achievements so far! You can read the article here: http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/brave-recovery-for-the-girl-who-fell-to-earth-20140414-36nzi.html.

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

 

Pressure Ulcer Prevention study


Did you know that the risk of developing a pressure ulcer increases significantly from 10 years after a SCI?1

Why do some people develop pressure ulcers and others don’t?

You can help find the answer!

This landmark AusCAN Risk study2, will follow 500 people across Canada and Australia for 3 years looking at the broadest range of risk factors ever investigated in SCI pressure ulcer prevention research. Its aim is to reduce the impact that pressure ulcers have on people’s lives through early identification of people at risk of skin breakdown. We are looking for people who have had a SCI for 10 years or more to participate.

Come along and:

  • Pressure map your seat3
  • Have an ultrasound of your bottom cheeks
  • Hear about the latest way to check for some early signs of skin damage

Plus, have your weight and height measured each visit.

Taxi expenses covered & receive a $25 Coles/Myer voucher each visit for participating.

What’s involved?

A few hours once a year (for 3 years) at your choice of RNSH or Assistive Technology & Seating clinic (Gladesville)4

What next?

If you have had a SCI for 10 years or more, (and have not had surgery for a pressure ulcer) call/sms or email Liz Dallaway 0498 599 097/ elizabeth.dallaway@sydney.edu.au to find out more.


1. Chen Y, DeVivo MJ, Jackson AB. Pressure ulcer prevalence in people with spinal cord injury: age-period-duration effects. Arch Phys Med Rehabil 2005;86:1208-13. http://www.archives-pmr.org/article/S0003-9993(05)00090-0/fulltext; Charlifue S, Lammertse DP, Adkins RH. Aging with spinal cord injury: changes in selected health indices and life satisfaction. Arch Phys Med Rehabil 2004;85:1848-53. http://www.archives-pmr.org/article/S0003-9993(04)00389-2/fulltext.
2 . Funded by the National Health & Medical Research Council of the Commonwealth Government of Australia.
3. This does not replace a Seating Assessment provided by a qualified health professional.
4. Assistive Technology & Seating clinic (Northern Sydney Local Health District) previously located at Royal Rehabilitation Centre Sydney.

Monday, 14 April 2014

 

Shower chair Commode study

IS YOUR MOBILE SHOWER COMMODE USABLE?! 

Emma Friesen of University of Queensland School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences is conducting a study to assess the usability of mobile shower commodes. The study involves completing two surveys on SurveyMonkey. The first survey is available @ www.surveymonkey.com/s/eMASTstudy.

The study seeks the participation of people over 18 years old who have a spinal cord injury and use a mobile shower commode for showering and/or toileting.

 

For more information about the study contact Emma emma.friesen@uqconnect.edu.au.

Wednesday, 09 April 2014

 

Private vehicle and trip planning research

A study is being conducted by the UTS and OT Solutions private vehicle access, modification, and trip planning by people with disability.

Participation is invited sought from

  • drivers with disability;
  • those who have a modified vehicle for themselves or a family member with disability for private transport purposes; and
  • those who would like a modified private vehicle but have been unable to obtain one.


Read More »

Monday, 07 April 2014

 

Independence is the key - St George and Sutherland Shire Leader

One of our Walk On clients, Kerrie Munsie, talks about her life since her injury. You can read the article here

Monday, 07 April 2014

 

Spinal cord injury in the media

With the recent injury of Alex McKinnon, spinal cord injury has been talked about and discussed in the media and SCIA staff and clients have contributed to the conversation. Watch Dan Holt from the SCIA Peer Support Team on Nine News Sydney, Walk On client Alex Walker on the ABC's 7.30 Report and SCIA CEO Peter Perry on 2ser FM - Real Radio The Wire program. Also read a subsequent article that appeared on ABC online following the 7.30 Report.

Thursday, 03 April 2014

 

Chronic Pain Australia Research Participant Database

Are you interested in participating in research?

If so, you might be interested in registering your details in a new Research Participant Database.

Chronic Pain Australia is often asked by universities and other organisations to advertise research of interest to people with chronic pain, those who care about them, and/or healthcare professionals with an interest in pain. All such requests are considered by the Chronic Pain Australia research sub-committee to decide if a study is appropriate for the organisation to advertise.

The aim of the database is to create a list of people interested in being contacted about research that might be of interest to them. This would include only research that has university or other appropriate ethical approval. Only members of the research sub-committee of the Chronic Pain Australia Board of Management will have access to the database and will contact you. At no time will access to the database or personal details to anyone outside the Chronic Pain Australia research sub-committee be provided.

Please visit the Chronic Pain Australia website for more information and to register for the database.

Monday, 24 March 2014

 

Jess Hansson wins Exercise and Sports Science Association Practicum Supervisor of the Year

One of our superstar Exercise Physiologists in Melbourne, Jess Hansson, has won the 2013 Exercise and Sports Science Association (ESSA) Practicum Supervisor of the Year! Jess has been recognised for her significant contribution to student clinical placement and the learning and development needs of exercise physiology students. Winning this national award is an incredible achievement and one that is certainly well deserved. Congratulations Jess! Read more about Jess's win and her work at Walk On Melbourne here: http://bit.ly/ESSAaward.

Thursday, 13 March 2014

 

NDIS will help, says lobby group - local access issues in the Eurobodalla Shire

Peter Perry, our CEO, talks about local access issues and the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) in the Eurobodalla Shire in this article from the Batemans Bay Post. Please read the article here

Thursday, 06 March 2014

 

Impact of Ageing survey

You are invited to participate in a survey that asks questions about ageing with physical disability.

Physical Disability Council of New South Wales objective is to better understand the impact of ageing on the everyday lives of people with a physical disability over 50 years of age

A consultative process will be used to better understand the everyday lives of these people.

The results will be used to make specific recommendations for systematic change to support the needs of older people living with a physical disability, as they grow older. These recommendations will be submitted to government and other stakeholders.

To complete the survey online go to www.surveys.questionpro.com/a/t/AJgVSZQhOJ or request a hard copy by calling 1800 688 831.

Thursday, 27 February 2014

 

Imagine Me photo workshop

Where: Abraham Mott Hall, 15a Argyle St, Millers Point (The Rocks)
When: Thursdays for 6 weeks (April 17, April 24, May 1, May 8, May 15, May 22), 10am to 4pm

At the Imagine Me Workshops you will create an artwork as you learn to creatively express yourself with photography and digital image manipulation software.

No previous photography experience necessary

For more information contact Sue Murray (0412 810 745, suemurrayphotographer@gmail.com).

Thursday, 27 February 2014

 

Aged care and the NDIS are not interchangeable

Tony Jones, a Policy and Advocacy Officer for Spinal Cord Injuries Australia and an Advisor to Jan Barham MLC, Greens NSW MP, has written an opinion piece for ABC’s Ramp Up about aged care and the NDIS.

Tony explores the implications of supports for people over 65 who acquire a disability being provided by the aged care sector instead of the NDIS.

He concludes that, “If people who acquire a disability after age 65 are to have an engaged and fulfilling life, three main issues will need to be addressed: suitable support to remain in the home and engage in the community, workforce support for those able to remain in employment, including working with employers to find ways to recruit and retain older workers with a disability, and adequate mainstream support to reduce the pressures through housing, healthcare and welfare.

"These concerns require a broad public policy approach from all levels of government and agencies. The demands will be beyond the scope of the aged care sector alone to address.”

You can read the full article here.

Thursday, 20 February 2014

 

People with spinal cord injuries maximising life choices

Minister for Disability Services John Ajaka today visited Spinal Cord Injuries Australia’s (SCIA) Walk On program in Lidcombe to see first-hand the support it provides to people with a spinal cord injury.

“SCIA received more than $3 million in funding from the NSW Government this financial year to cover services including accommodation, medical crisis support, nursing care and the Walk On program,” Minister Ajaka said.  

“Today I am experiencing the Walk On program first hand, including its intensive activity based rehabilitation program. This offers paraplegics and quadriplegics the chance to regain function through personalised exercise programs aligned to people’s goals. 

“With help from the program, each client is able to experience improvements in their physical, emotional and psychological wellbeing with some, amazingly even taking their first steps.”

The Chief Executive of SCIA Peter Perry said Spinal Cord Injuries Australia is committed to finding effective ways for people with spinal cord injuries to be able to live lives no different from anyone else.

“We help more than 90 clients per week get back on track after a spinal cord injury so they can become the masters of their own destiny, rather than recipients of care.

“The Minister’s visit affords us an opportunity to demonstrate the amazing outcomes and progress made by our clients as well as to meet the team who make it all possible.”

Minister Ajaka said it is wonderful to see the results which can be achieved by non-government organisations with the support of government funding.

“SCIA not only make a difference to people’s lives in NSW, but their expertise is also recognised and accepted internationally,” he said.

Thursday, 20 February 2014

 

Safe Day Initiative

A commitment to safety by Arrium Mining and Leighton Contractors has resulted in more than $50,000 being donated to charity.

The companies joined forces to create an added focus on safety as part of the Magnetite Optimisation Project at Arrium Mining's South Middleback Ranges Concentrator site by adopting a 'Safe Day Initiative'. For every one of the project days completed safely, Arrium Mining and Leighton Contractors each contributed $100 to a fund to be distributed to nominated charities.

Spinal Cord Injuries Australia was the major recipient, receiving 30 per cent of the proceeds. 

SCIA client Charles Brice represented SCIA to accept the generous donation generated by this fantastic initiative.

Click here to read the the Wyalla News article about the project.

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

 

Inequality in law report

In 2013, the Australian Human Rights Commission conducted a wide ranging consultation process to identify how people with disabilities deal with the barriers they experience to equality before the law. The report Equal Before the Law provides a snapshot of where equality does not exist, highlights services and programs that improve equality before the law for people with disabilities, and sets some directions by which change may occur. For further information and to access the report visit www.humanrights.gov.au/publications/equal-law.

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

 

PDCN survey of EnableNSW's PADP program

4 February 2014

The Physical Disability Council of NSW (PDCN) ran a survey between August-October 2013 which was completed by over 140 people who were clients of EnableNSW's Program of Appliances for Disabled People (PADP) which provides equipment, aids and appliances (commonly known as assistive technology). PADP services were centralised a few years ago with the aim of ensuring there were uniform policies and procedures for all eligible people throughout NSW, and to create some efficiencies in the system of which any financial savings would be used for PADP, and although the waiting times were initially reduced dramatically it is unfortunate that there are reports of waiting times exceeding 18 months. Please read the survey here. 

Tuesday, 04 February 2014

 

The sickening cost of hospital parking

Chris Nicholls, General Manager of Transitional Services at SCIA, has been quoted in an article in the Daily Telegraph and The Australian about parking costs at public hospitals in NSW.

The article says that public hospital patients, visitors and staff are being gouged $24 million a year for parking. Mr Nicholls spoke about the challenges families face when visiting relatives in hospital after a spinal cord injury.

"It is absolutely horrendous for these people when it comes to visiting their family members. If they live in Sydney they want to visit their relatives every day, but the parking costs so much a lot of these people couldn't possibly afford to drive."

You can read the article here.

Friday, 24 January 2014

 

Daredevils warned about jumping off Manly Wharf

SCIA CEO Peter Perry, speaking on behalf of the Australian Spinal Injury Alliance has been quoted in an article in The Manly Daily.

In a photo supplied to the newspaper, a man was captured jumping off the Manly wharf building into the waters about eight metres below. It is common for people to dive off the deck, but wharf property manager Chris Coore said it was the first time he had heard of someone jumping off the roof. Mr Perry said in the article that young people often did not realise how much a spinal injury could change their lives and encouraged young people to watch out for their mates.

You can read the article here.

Friday, 24 January 2014

 

Transport accessibility in Australia today

Greg Killeen, disability advocate and part of the SCIA Policy and Advocacy team, looks into the accessibility of transport services in major Australian cities in a three piece series for the ABC's Ramp Up Website.

Part 1 - In the first article of this 3-part series, he focuses on the most common modes of public transport - buses, trains and trams.

Part 2 - In the second article of this 3-part series, he focuses on coaches, charter buses and dedicated school buses.

Part 3 - The final article of this 3-part series looks into taxis and related services.

Friday, 24 January 2014

 

Sydney's rail network and accessibility

Pauline David is a graduate of our Discovering the Power in Me (DPM) program, a DPM team member and budding advocate for people with disabilities. Here is her article on accessible transport in Sydney, featured in the Daily Telegraph and the Herald Sun, please click here to read the article.

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

 

Jerome Wong to drive modified vehicle from London to Cape Town

Jerome Wong and Jessica

One of our adventurous fundraisers Jerome Wong is featured on the front page of the Hornsby Advocate. Jerome and his partner Jessica will drive a modified 4WD from London to Cape Town and are fundraising for SCIA to help other people with a spinal cord injury.

To support Jerome with his fundraising please visit: http://bit.ly/DonatetoLostAboundYou can read the article here.

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

 

Safety raises money for charity

Arrium Mining and Leighton Contractors recently joined forces to introduce a safety initiative at the Magnetite Expansion Project at the South Middleback Ranges concentrator site. For every day completed safely without injury, $100 was contributed by each company to a fund which at the end of the project was to be distributed to a number of nominated charities including Spinal Cord Injuries Australia. Read here about the initiative and the charities that will benefit. 

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

 

Line of Sight Photography Exhibition

To celebrate International Day of People with Disability, a photography exhibition called Line of Sight was launched in Wollongong. The exhibition was displayed in Wollongong Central shopping centre and depicted the challenges that people in wheelchairs face when accessing their community. This project is the result of an exciting partnership between Wollongong City Council and Spinal Cord Injuries Australia Illawarra.

The participants hope the information will provide insight into some of the barriers that prevent wheelchair users from moving about the built environment freely and safely.

Thank you to Leicia Green, Jack Seddon, Richard Kramer, Steve Petrolati, Alex Trail and Bruce Veevers for their involvement in the project, here are some of the photos they helped produce.

logo

Bruce Veevers

Steve Petrolati

Richard Kramer

Alex Traill

Jack Seddon

Leica Green


Tuesday, 14 January 2014

 

Walk On

Our Walk On program has featured in a new publication of the University of Sydney Faculty of Health Sciences - Thought Leaders Shaping Healthfile icon pdf

Friday, 10 January 2014

 

Spinal Cord Injury and Chronic Pain Project

The Spinal Cord Injury and Chronic Pain Project funded by the Lifetime Care and Support Authority and conducted through the Agency for Clinical Innovation NSW (ACI NSW), aims to improve services and support for people with traumatic SCI and chronic pain. The consultation phase has now been completed and you can read Report 1: Consumer Needs Analysis and Report 2: Clinician Needs Analysis here: Report 1: Consumer Needs Analysis and Report 2: Clinician Needs Analysis.    

In international studies, chronic pain is reported in almost 70 percent of people with traumatic SCI, with 30 percent describing pain as severe. Pain can occur immediately after sustaining the injury, directly due to trauma and nerve damage, or years later with overuse or ageing of the musculoskeletal system.

The first and second phases of the project, the Consumer Needs Analysis and Clinician Needs Analysis, generated from stakeholder consultations and input from hundreds of health professionals and consumers, has identified that long wait lists for access to pain services and lack of targeted consumer and clinician resources specific for SCI pain are key issues.  Now in its third phase, the SCI and Chronic Pain Project is focusing on developing primary health and internet-based consumer resources, which will address identified gaps and focus on self-management techniques. 

If you would like more information about the project or if you would like to be involved in testing the resources, contact the project officer on Ph. 0428 634 874 or via email Lyndall.Katte@aci.health.nsw.gov.au 

Monday, 23 December 2013

 

Report: International Perspectives on Spinal Cord Injury

Spinal Cord Injuries Australia has been recognised as a leading provider of valuable services in a recent report published by the World Health Organisation (WHO). The report entitled ‘International Perspectives on Spinal Cord Injury’ summarises information about spinal cord injury and the practices of various organisations from around the world. We are proud to be acknowledged in this report as it shows our programs are recognised on a global level for making a difference to the lives of people with spinal cord injury. The report is available from the WHO website and can also be borrowed in hard copy from the SCIA SCI Resources Library.

Thursday, 12 December 2013

 

Minister launches report to help maximise life choices

MEDIA RELEASE – 14th NOVEMBER 2013 

Minister for Ageing and Disability Services, John Ajaka, launched the Research into Maximising Life Choices of People with a Spinal Cord Injury report at Parliament House to an audience of disability sector leaders. 

Minister Ajaka said the report, launched during Spinal Awareness Week (10-16 November), took a unique and refreshing approach to research by asking people with spinal cord injuries about their real life experiences. 

“The approach adopted by the report is consistent with the values of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) which values individual opinions and experiences,” Mr Ajaka said. 

“Under the NDIS people with disability will make decisions about their life, and they will be able to choose and take control of services they use. 

“By releasing the report during Spinal Awareness Week, Spinal Cord Injuries Australia (SCIA) is helping to bring more attention and awareness around people with spinal injuries face on a daily basis.” 

With funding assistance from the NSW Government, Spinal Cord Injuries Australia (SCIA) commissioned the Social Policy Research Centre at the University of New South Wales to carry out research into maximising life choices of people with spinal cord injury, highlighting the needs of people with disability.

 The Research into Maximising Life Choices of People with a Spinal Cord Injury report revealed that physical and emotional wellbeing was fundamental to being able to participate in society and take full advantage of opportunities. The role of the family in terms of emotional, physical and financial support was shown to be crucial in enabling people to achieve these goals.

The vision of SCIA is "a society without barriers for people with a spinal cord injury” and SCIA wanted to understand why some people face obstacles in society and what is stopping them from participating in their community. This research reveals some of the challenges that people face so that the organisation can provide services, information and support to overcome these barriers. 

The report highlighted eight areas of importance for people with spinal cord injuries; having support to maintain and improve health, supporting participation in family and social life, providing support to family and friends, promoting participation in the workforce, improving access to information resources, increasing financial security, improving government policy and increasing accessible housing, facilities and transport. 

Peter Perry, CEO of SCIA said, “We believe that it is important for everyone to experience social inclusion and to be able to access every opportunity in their community. This research sets a benchmark for the disability sector as it shows how crucial it is to put the needs of people with disability at the centre of service delivery.” 

SCIA client Kerry Munsie has paraplegia resulting from a car accident, speaking at the event today she said, “Spinal Cord Injuries Australia has helped me identify my goals and have supported me and my family throughout my journey. I am grateful that they have worked with me to help me grow as an individual and get my confidence back.” 

To read a copy of the report, visit Maximising Life Choices Report

Friday, 15 November 2013

 

Study of sexuality and sexual functioning in people with spinal cord damage

Dr Peter New (Caulfield Hospital) and colleagues (Dr Narelle Warren, Ms Merilyn Seddon from Monash University and Dr Kim Currie from Caulfield Hospital) are looking for people with spinal cord damage from any cause – traumatic or non-traumatic – to participate in a study about sexuality and sexual functioning.  Non-disabled people are also wanted to participate, for a comparison group. 

The project is designed to help people working in spinal cord rehabilitation better understand the sexuality issues that occur for people who have spinal cord damage or injury from any cause. The project will study how spinal cord damage affects people’s sexual identity, sexual functioning, and how changes in sexuality affect relationships. The study also investigates the sexual rehabilitation education needs of people with spinal cord damage or injury. 

Participation involves completing a web-based questionnaire that takes approximately 15 minutes. No identifying details are collected. Only adults in Australia aged 18 years or older are required. Two groups of people are needed to complete the questionnaire:

1)    People with injury or damage to their spinal cord from any cause. This includes conditions such as cancer, infection, circulation problems, disc prolapse or arthritis that squashes the spinal cord or spinal cord injury due to trauma from motor vehicles, falls or other injuries.  However, we do not want to include people still in their initial rehabilitation hospital admission, those with multiple sclerosis, or congenital conditions. 

2)    We also want to compare the response of people with spinal cord damage or injury to people without these conditions, or any other medical problem that can affect sexual functioning.  This comparison will be helpful in guiding the development of programs to help people with spinal cord damage or injury.  Therefore, please pass the information about this survey to non-spinal cord damaged family and friends so they can complete the survey too. 

For more information and to complete the online questionnaire

This study has been approved by the Alfred Health Human Research and Ethics Committee: Project: 148/13.

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

 

Nick Dale at Walk On

12 November 2013

Article in Swimstyle magazine about One Funky World Foundation's sponsorship of Nick Dale which has enabled him to take part in Walk On. Please read here about how Nick has benefited from the program. 

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

 

ABC Radio discussion on spinal cord injuries and Spinal Injuries Awareness Week

11 November 2013

On ABC 666 Afternoons last week, Alex Sloan was joined by dietitian Caroline Salisbury, Peter Perry, and Chris Nicholls from Spinal Cord Injuries Australia to discuss the lives of those who have spinal cord injuries. Please listen to the interview here.

Monday, 11 November 2013

 

Easy Rider - South Coast Cruise

4 November 2013

The 3rd annual Easy Rider - South Coast Cruise took place on Sunday the 3rd of November. Over one hundred and twenty motorcyclists and muscle car enthusiasts met at the Towradgi Beach Hotel and cruised to the Sussex Inlet Tavern for a BBQ lunch, all to raise much needed funds for Spinal Cord Injuries Australia. The Illawarra Mercury covered the event with two articles, one appearing in the Saturday edition of the Illawarra Mercury ,"Take Two"  and a photo gallery of fantastic images from the event here: http://bit.ly/EasyRiderSouthCoastCrusie2013.

Monday, 04 November 2013

 

How neuroplasticity helped Evander Conroy make his first baby steps

28 October 2013

Evander Conroy, one of our youngest clients featured in The Weekend Australian. The article tells the story of his family’s fight to access therapy and how SCIA and Walk On have been instrumental in Evander’s progress. You can read the article here.

For more information about our Walk On program please click here or call us on 1800 819 775.

To support families like Evander's you can donate here.

To keep in contact with Walk On via Facebook please click here.

You can learn more about Evander at the Evander Conroy Foundation.

Monday, 28 October 2013

 

Students get dose of reality

19 September 2013

Spinal Cord Injuries Australia supporter Nate Greenfield shared his story with students of St Paul's College to highlight the dangers of drink driving and reduce the number of young lives affected by spinal cord injury. Great work Nate!!

http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/nsw/students-get-dose-of-reality-from-wheelchairbound-nathan-greenfield/story-fni0cx12-1226723423097

Monday, 23 September 2013

 

Free Workshops on person centred approaches

My Choice Matters is offering free workshops on person centred approaches, the National Disability Insurance Scheme, self-managed funding and individualised supports for people with disability. The workshops provide a valuable opportunity for people with disability, to think about how they can exercise choice and control over the supports and services they receive.  Participants will have the opportunity to hear from other people with disability, who are already operating within a person centred framework. For further information visit the website, email info@mychoicematters.org.au or call 1800 144 653.


Monday, 26 August 2013

 

System flaws bar path back to work

Caroline Cox is a qualified midwife and contracted a spinal cord infection in 2008 which paralysed her from the neck down and put her in hospital for 12 months. Since that time Caroline has undertaken intensive rehabilitation to get her to where she is today. One of Caroline's goals has been to get back to work. In this article in The Australianfile icon pdf, we learn about what is involved and the obstacles in getting Caroline back working as a midwife.  Caroline also featured in our Accord magazine. You can read all about Caroline and her story in the latest issue of Accord.

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

 

'Rank' decision on taxi subsidies isolates people with disability


SCIA MEDIA RELEASE – WEDNESDAY 26 JUNE 2013

In the 2013-2014 NSW Budget, Transport Minister Gladys Berejiklian has failed to respond to ongoing requests to increase the NSW Taxi Transport Subsidy Scheme (TTSS) which offsets part of taxi transport costs for people with severe disability.

The NSW TTSS provides a 50% subsidy of a maximum $60 taxi fare (maximum $30 subsidy); however, the subsidy has not increased since 1999 although NSW taxi fares have increased by 60%.  For many people with severe disability, wheelchair accessible taxis are the only means of transport. The increasing cost of taxi fares has an ongoing detrimental impact on their ability to seek and maintain employment. Australia is currently ranked 21 out of 29 of OECD countries in relation to people with disability in employment so helping people get to and from work should be a priority. The cost of taxi transport means it is also difficult for people with disability to attend medical appointments, visit family and participate in social and recreational activities.

Greg Killeen, Senior Policy and Advocacy Officer, Spinal Cord Injuries Australia, has a physical disability and is also a TTSS participant. Killeen has been campaigning to increase the subsidy for many years and anticipated that the Minister would announce the increase in the recent 2013-2014 NSW Budget.

"The NSW TTSS is now ineffective, resulting in many people with severe disability becoming increasingly isolated. Furthermore, people with disability face other unavoidable costs and expensive taxi fares often prevent them from seeking and maintaining employment," says Killeen.

Peter Perry, Chief Executive of Spinal Cord Injuries Australia says that the news is hard to believe, given the relatively small amount of money involved. He says, “The decision not to increase the subsidy goes against the very principle of helping people with disability to get back to work and to participate in society.”

The NSW Transport Minister is completely aware of the ongoing negative impact due to the cost of taxi fares as the 2010 NSW Parliamentary review of the NSW Taxi Industry recommended the TTSS subsidy be increased to 50% of a maximum $100 taxi fare. Looking at other states, the Victorian Government has been providing a 50% subsidy of a $120 taxi fare (maximum $60 subsidy) since 2008 and the South Australian Government provides a 75% subsidy of taxi fares.

Spinal Cord Injuries Australia is seeking the NSW TTSS subsidy be increased to 75% of a maximum $120 taxi fare (maximum $90 subsidy) to address these barriers which will also assist people travelling long distances in rural and regional areas and people travelling in Sydney due to the increased traffic congestion. A recent survey of NSW TTSS participants, titled "The Shrinking Circle" www.scia.org.au/policy-and-advocacy/campaigns/ttss-campaign revealed many people with disability are spending up to 30% of their welfare benefits or wages on taxis.

END MEDIA RELEASE

CONTACT:  Peter Perry, Chief Executive Officer, Spinal Cord Injuries Australia 02 8347 3015

 

Wednesday, 26 June 2013

 

National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) website goes live

Information about the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is now available on a dedicated website. As well as the website having general information about the NDIS, people with a disability can complete a questionnaire - My Access Checker - which will help determine whether they are likely to be eligible for support. If the Access Checker indicates they are likely to be eligible, and if they live in a launch site and meet any age requirements it might have, they will be given a phone number to call. 

Friday, 07 June 2013

 

Research project - Functional priorities after SCI

Invitation to participate in a research project: Functional Priorities Of People With Spinal Cord Injury

You are invited to take part in a novel research study investigating priorities for recovery of functions after spinal cord injury. Media reports about "finding the cure" often focus entirely on recovery of ability to walk, however, as you know spinal cord injury affects many body systems and functions. These may range from muscle weakness or paralysis and loss of sensation causing problems with walking or lifting and holding objects to lack of control of internal organs with difficulty emptying the bladder or bowel or maintaining an erection, as well as secondary effects on quality of life from pain or spasms. To date limited research has been conducted to determine the functions that are thought to be most important to the person with the spinal cord injury.

Your feedback will be very important in helping us to understand better the functional priorities of people with spinal cord injury. The findings can help target future research to focus upon the areas that are found to be of most importance to the spinal cord injured population and hence to improve the quality of life for people with spinal cord injury.

The study wants to get 200 participants, male or female, aged 18 and over to complete an online survey. The survey can be found at: http://edu.surveygizmo.com/s3/1154496/SCI-Health-Choices

Participants can go in a draw to win an Ipad.

For any questions relating to the project please contact Charles Lo on 0410 638803, or chlo2014@uni.sydney.edu.au.

This project has been approved by the Human Research Ethics Committee at the University of Sydney, The Approval Number is 13202. If you have any concerns or complaints about the conduct of the research study you can contact The Manager, Human Ethics Administration, University of Sydney on +61 2 8627 8176 (Telephone); +61 2 8627 8177 (Facsimile) or ro.humanethics@sydney.edu.au

 

Thursday, 23 May 2013

 

NSW urged to lift taxi subsidies for disabled

Spinal Cord Injuries Australia campaign to increase the NSW taxi transport subsidy scheme is continuing with the publication of an article in the Sydney Morning Herald on Saturday. Please read the article here.....

Monday, 22 April 2013

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